I welcome the appointment of Professor Pookong Kee as the next BHP Chair of Australian Studies at Peking University. Today, the Foundation for Australian Studies in China (FASIC) announced Professor Kee’s appointment, which will commence in Beijing in early 2019.
The BHP Chair initiative, now in its sixth year, has raised the profile of Australian studies within Chinese academic circles. Through its activities, the BHP Chair has given more Chinese university students the opportunity to learn about Australia.
The Australia-China Council, led by the Hon Warwick Smith AM, was instrumental in creating the BHP Chair initiative, which is an example of Australian private sector contribution to our relationship with China. The Australia-China Council and FASIC work together to enhance and broaden the study of Australia in China.
Professor Kee is a recognised expert on multicultural Australia and is well-known in the Australian and Chinese university communities. Professor Kee will be based at the School of International Studies at Peking University. He will provide leadership and academic support to more than 39 Australian Studies Centres at universities and institutes across China.
Professor Kee is currently the Director of the Asia Institute of The University of Melbourne. Earlier in his career, he held academic roles in Singapore and Japan.
I thank the current BHP Chair of Australian Studies at Peking University, Professor Gregory McCarthy, for his contributions during his three-year tenure.
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