Introducing the new Directors of the Confucius Institute

21 June 2018

In October 2017, Dr Deljana Iossifova and Dr Shuangxia Sheng joined the Confucius Institute as Academic Director and Chinese Director respectively.

In October 2017, Dr Deljana Iossifova, Senior Lecturer in Urban Studies, University of Manchester and Dr Shuangxia Sheng, Associate Professor in Chinese Language and Culture, Beijing Normal University joined the Confucius Institute as the Academic Director and Chinese Director respectively. They are going to bring new ideas, energy and expertise to the team.

Q1: What will you bring to the Confucius Institute as the Director?

Dr Iossifova: I spent significant time living and working in China before turning to academia and have experienced the country's ongoing transformation first hand. My personal and academic interest in the country and my enthusiasm for all things Chinese will be helpful in integrating and developing the Institute further over the next years.

Dr Sheng: To do my best to dedicate to our CI and let myself grow together with the CI.

Q2: Name one project you wish to bring out in the next 12 months.

Dr Iossifova: Twelve months is not a very long period of time and so I like to focus on longer-term strategies. I would like to see wider sections of the public in Manchester and the north-west engage with China's language, history and traditions – but even more so, with the country's contemporary culture, successes and even challenges.

I hope that the range of projects we will be implementing over the coming months and years will make the excellent China-related research undertaken at The University of Manchester visible and accessible to the public, and that this may enhance and deepen people's understanding of and links with the country.

Dr Sheng: To carry out a series of Chinese teaching-related training and complete a set of Chinese textbooks for the CI.

Q3: What do you like most about Manchester?

Dr Iossifova: China Town! The smells, lights and sounds in the streets of Manchester's China Town often remind me of the years I spent in Shanghai as a young architect a long time ago. I am grateful, too, for the great quality of Chinese food that Manchester has on offer!

Dr Sheng: Various museums and galleries.

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