Teaching to fish’ rather than ‘giving a fish’: is China contributing to the global sustainable futures?

Yuan, T (2015) 'Teaching to fish’ rather than ‘giving a fish’: is China contributing to the global sustainable futures?' Academics in China, 12. pp. 257-266. ISSN 1002-1698

Official URL: http://caod.oriprobe.com/articles/47606979/_Teachi...


‘Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime’. This proverb now becomes the slogan of China’s international aid. This paper is based on my previous empirical studies on China's 'donor logic' of aid. Rather than looking at the motives of Chinese aid and how it is challenging the Western ideas, this paper focuses on policy discourse and tries to seek the recent trends and knowledge transformations of China’s international cooperation of education. Through examining China’s Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) pledges historically and recent policy documents, three key trends are firstly discussed- the trend of one-to-one top university cooperation, cooperation in research projects, academic publications and think tanks; and the enhancement in the cooperation on technical and vocational education and training at tertiary level. The paper then looks at 'what' are transferred through the above approaches. These include knowledge on developing university subjects that are key to economic growth; knowledge on developing applied research and tertiary vocational education; and knowledge of China’s understandings and experience of development. The paper argues that China has been continuously progressing on the modality and quality of the educational cooperation. Chinese approaches of teaching ‘how to develop’ based on its own experience may help strengthen the independence of developing countries and build win-win partnerships for long term development.

Item Type: Article

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Keywords: teaching to fish, giving a fish, donor logic of aid, China's international cooperation of education
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JZ International relations
L Education > L Education (General)
L Education > LG Individual institutions (Asia. Africa)
Divisions: School of Education
UoA: Education
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2017 13:29
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2021 09:47
URI / Page ID: https://researchspace.bathspa.ac.uk/id/eprint/9899
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