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I. To Cultivate Humanistic Characteristics of NCTU, a Polytechnic University

  The National Chiao Tung University (NCTU) , a top-notch university in Taiwan, is internationally renowned for its teaching and research of vocational, technical, and scientific subjects. Beginning in the 1960s, NCTU always places an emphasis on the research of applied sciences, electronic and information technology, as well as human capacity building and management. Indeed, it is dubbed " Taiwan's MIT" as it has also become the main catalyst in the development of Taiwan's high tech industry and transport infrastructure. However, by the late 1990s, NCTU started to also pay attention to the fields of humanities and social sciences. During the past few years, it began to establish graduate programs related to applied arts, architecture, education, literature, music, social and ethnic studies, among other general humanities and social sciences courses. All these programs are aimed to integrate technologies with humanities so as to make NCTU a bona fide "comprehensive university". In 2006, in conjunction with this vision and long term goal, NCTU established the Center for Humanities and Social Sciences Research (CHSSR) on its main campus, which is located right next the Science Park in Hsin-chu City (sort of Taiwan's Silicon Valley).

  The Center for Humanities and Social Sciences Research has a director and an executive secretary who report to the president of the university, and carry out policies made by an executive committee, which consists of the deans of NCTU's five colleges. By 2008, the CHSSR received a grant from Taiwan's Ministry of Education to upgrade its research facilities and personnel . With such a subvention and increased resources, NCTU's CHSSR took new measures to foster the research in humanism and social sciences, such as the development of graduate institutes, promoting collaborative research with other universities in Taiwan and abroad, holding more workshops, seminars and conferences, and above all, initiating the publication of a book series along the theme of "The Origins, Transformation and Development of Taiwan's Maritime Cultures".

II. International Academic Exchange ─ Scholars at Home and Abroad Getting Together

  In April 2009, the Center for Humanities and Social Sciences Research moved into a 150-square-meter office, which has a large room for administrative staff, a conference room, and eight studies for researchers, and a small library. Since its onset, the Center for Humanities Social Science Research has set out to invite scholars in humanities from around the world to come to the center as its "resident scholars" and to conduct research and hold seminars for either three months, or six months, or even one year. CHSSR resident scholars came from such prestigious universities as Harvard University, Cornell University, The City University of New York, Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Lyon, Universität Osnabrück, Université Paris IV, Institute of Political Studies, Beijing's Tsinghua University, China's Academy of Social Sciences, and Shanghai Normal University. In addition, Taiwanese resident scholars include those who are affiliated with Taiwan's Academia Sinica, National Applied Research Laboratories, National Taiwan Normal University, National Chengchi University, Tunghai University, among others. As of March, 2011, nine resident scholars came from overseas while five scholars from various Taiwanese universities and institutes. CHSSR provides these resident scholars with individual offices and an environment in which scholars from various backgrounds can interact with their peers, exchange ideas and collaborate their joint research projects.