The 5th "Engaging with Vietnam - An Interdisciplinary Dialogue" Conference
Integrating Knowledge: The Multiple Ways of Knowing Vietnam
To create a different experience for all those who have participated in the Engaging with Vietnam Conferences over the past years and for those who are new to the conference, we, for the first time, will move the conference venue out of Hanoi and to Thai Nguyen, a province in the Northeastern part of Vietnam, only two hours drive from Hanoi (and one hour from the Hanoi airport). Thai Nguyen is a truly multilingual, multicultural and multiethnic region with so much to offer and to stimulate our intellectual exchanges. Also, for the first time, the Engaging with Vietnam Conference will offer its participants the option on the day after the conference to participate in a field trip to a cultural museum, villages and farms in Thai Nguyen to give them opportunities and inspirations to enable multi/interdisciplinary research works and to engage with Vietnam more fully through field observations. The Conference will provide transport to Thai Nguyen from Noi Bai International Airport and from Hanoi, so you will have no trouble traveling to this hospitable land, where our partner institution Thai Nguyen University is located.
The first “Engaging with Vietnam: An Interdisciplinary Dialogue” conference was held in 2010 at Monash University and featured Vietnam-related work by Vietnamese and international researchers and research students in Australian universities and organizations. The second and third conferences moved to Vietnam, and saw the added participation of scholars and research students based in Vietnam, Southeast Asia and various other countries around the world. For the fourth “Engaging with Vietnam” conference we moved our centre of gravity once again in order to involve new participants, and also to gain the inspiration which comes from moving beyond familiar boundaries. The 4thEngaging Vietnam Conference continued the traditions developed in the three previous conferences in Hanoi and Melbourne emphasizing policy-relevant interdisciplinary and international academic research and dialogue between Vietnamese and foreign scholars interested in Vietnam. One of the key identities of the Engaging with VN Conference Series is its interdisciplinary research rigour that places knowledge, research and scholarship as well as policy-research dialogues at the core of its agendas.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Australia. Over the course of the past four decades, not only have Vietnam and Australia developed close ties on multiple levels, but Vietnam has also become much more integrated with the rest of the world as well.
For this 5th Engaging with Vietnam: An Interdisciplinary Dialogue Conference, we are encouraging participants to reflect on this issue of integration, particularly as it concerns the production of knowledge. What does it mean when we say that there is scholarly integration between Vietnam and the rest of the world? What is it that scholarship in Vietnam is integrating with? Is there only one form of “world scholarship” that can be integrated into? Or are there many? Are there some forms of knowledge that cannot be integrated into other ways of knowing? And finally, to what degree has the production of knowledge in Vietnam actually already become integrated with the production of knowledge in other parts of the world? Is the degree of integration the same across the disciplines?
These are some of the questions that the keynote speakers at the conference will be addressing. Participants are welcome to present on their own disciplinary research, but we encourage all participants to reflect on the issues that the conference seeks to address and to include their reflections in their papers and presentations.