Agricultural and Food Ethics in East Asia

While Humanities scholars in Asia are taking on a variety of environmental concerns, the East Asia Observatory is focusing on the impact of agriculture with respect to environmental and climate problems, and examining agricultural and food ethics from East Asian perspectives.

The East Asia Observatory at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences, at National Taiwan University (EAO, NTU), strives to enlist scholars in the Humanities and related disciplines from East Asia-- and around the globe-- to join the fray in confronting the environmental and climate problems of the new century.

To connect our land-based concerns with parallels issues of the sea and marine life, we are building bridges with the Humanities and related scholars at the University of Guam for whom the health of the seas and the resilience of the stocks is of vital concern.

Main page: http://hfe-observatories.org

East Asia Observatory: Prospectus and mission

東亞環境人文整合平台 願景與使命

The East Asia Obervatory (EAO) is hosted by the Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences (IHS) at NTU. EAO is a participant an internationally sponsored environmental humanities project to provide data and materials regarding human impacts on the local (and eventually regional) environments and ecosystems, and moreover to identify, monitor, and sometimes address specific environmental problems due to human activities and related issues. The data, materials, and monitoring are to be provided by local faculty and allied organizations.

東亞環境人文整合平台是台灣大學人文社會高等研究院所屬的整合平台之一,我們發起國際人文環境計畫,向本地學術機構蒐集關於在地或區域性生態環境人為影響的資料,進而發掘、監督、並對外發表人為的環境問題議

Periodically, when urgent ecological issues are identified that we think can be effectively addressed by concerted action, the East Asia Observatory will pool the knowledge, wisdom, knowhow, and synergy of local faculty and allied organizations to develop a response strategy. (Also, there might be cases where transforming a standing situation would be desirable, for example a clean-up of the waterways east of Wanhua, Taipei and the Tamsui River basin in order to create a beautiful green Taipei waterfront, not only to improve the river and coastal ecosystems but also to improve the quality of people’s lives there!) Once a problem or project has been identified and a working strategy set forth, the Observatory will appeal to interested faculty, government agencies, NGOs, as well as to business, social, and religious organizations for financial and other forms of assistance in solving the problem or transforming the situation.

面對急迫的生態議題,東亞環境人文整合平台定期與相關學術單位聯繫,討論應對措施。此外,我們致力於長期的改變計畫,例如台北萬華東部的排水道和淡水河流域的清理,都創造了綠色台北濱海區的美,不只改善了沿海地區生態,並改善當地居民的生活。一旦發現問題、提出應對措施,我們將尋求相關單位的財務合作,例如:學術單位、政府機構、民間團體、企業、宗教組織等等,我們聯合致力於生態環境的改善。

These activities of identifying, monitoring, and addressing of environmental and ecological problems are presently being carried out by several partner European, Australian, and American Observatories.

我們的整合平台在歐洲、澳洲、美國都有合作夥伴,合手發掘、監督、並對外發表生態環境問題。

The heart of the East Asia Observatory will be a multifunctional digital platform (under construction). The digital platform website will open with an introduction to its mission and contents, with links to the established partner Observatories in Europe, America, and Australia. The digital platform will provide images (photographic and video) of the environment and ecosystems of Taiwan (and later the East Asia region), including the seas and various climates. The digital platform will provide links to basic information and research on the environment and ecosystems of Taiwan and the region. Links to the other Observatories around the world will provide comparative data on the environmental and ecological situation, problems, and activities in those places for comparison and inspiration.

東亞環境人文整合平台的宗旨是建立一個多功能的數位平台,我們將刊登計畫簡介、使命和內容;我們在歐洲、美國、澳洲各地合作觀察團隊的相關連結;台灣環境暨東亞地區生態環境的照片影片、相關資訊和研究;以及海外觀察團隊對全球其他區域之生態問題研究等等。我們將比較各地區的環境問題,進而激盪共同保護地球的策略使命。

The East Asia Observatory is distinguished by having a Humanities heart and soul. For example, the digital platform will provide samples of local writings, such as literatures, chronicles, narratives, which offer evolving images of nature and ecosystems over time in various perspectives in Taiwan. Especially precious will be reports and reflections of the aboriginal peoples who occupied all areas of Taiwan for many millennia. Precious data were also left by settlers who came over from China during the past 400 years to set down roots and conduct their lives in the environment by farming, fishing, hunting, etc. Similar data will be collected from the period of rapid modernization under the Japanese (1895-1945), the period of land reform and industrialization under the Chinese Nationalists (1945-1985), and the postindustrial period of consumerism during which the natural environment is being ruthlessly encroached upon under free market democracy (1985-present). Indeed, it is due to this ruthless incessant encroachment of the remaining natural environment in the name of development that leads people to learn anew the age old wisdom of nature and ecological lifestyles in harmony with nature from the original inhabitants of Taiwan, the aborigines.

東亞環境人文整合平台以人文精神出發,因此,數位平台也刊登鄉土文學及年度紀事,佐以不同時期台灣環境變化的圖像;珍貴的是,我們將報導過去於台灣各地居住千年的原住民生活。此外,我們還刊登台灣不同時期人與土地的互動變化:400年前從中國來台的漢人在此發根、以農、漁、獵為生;日治時期(1895-1945)的快速現代化;國民黨統治時期(1945-1985)的土地改革與現代化;以至後消費主義盛行的後現代化時期(1985 至今的自由市場民主),人們以經濟發展為由,對自然環境一連串殘忍破壞,一提醒我們反思祖先原住民們與自然和諧共存的生活方式。

Philosophy and anthropology both provide insights into conceptual and cultural views of nature and of human interaction with nature. Philosophy in particular provides and critiques conceptual and ethical resources for approaching and responding to environmental and ecological issues and problems in the most sensitive and positive ways.

有關人與自然的和諧共存,我們能從哲學和人類學理論當中找到文化概念上不同的見解。哲學尤其啟發我們與自然互動的概念及倫理,讓我們能更敏銳、更正向的面對生態環境問題,進而提出改善策略。

Besides utilizing the rich contributions of Humanities scholars in literature, history, philosophy, anthropology, languages, etc. the East Asia Observatory will incorporate data from science and agriculture programs that investigate the interface between human activity and ecosystems, and undertake work in the field, such as Geology, Geography and Environmental Resources, Cultural Geography, Meteorology, Oceanography, Global Change, Public Health, Fisheries, Agriculture, Bio-environment, Forestry, Agricultural Extension, Entomology, Experimental Forest, Mountain Experimental Farm, Graduate Institute of Building and Planning and New Ruralism Research and Development Center, etc.

除了實際運用人文學者在「人與土地」互動上的豐富文獻,諸如文學、歷史、哲學、人類學、語言學等等,東亞環境人文整合平台將擴及資訊來源至科學及農業領域,諸如地質學、地理及環境資源、文化地理學、氣象學、海洋學、全球變化、公共衛生、漁業、農業、生物環境、森林學、農業推廣、昆蟲學、實驗林、山林實驗農場、建築與城鄉研究所等等。

Your interest in and support of the East Asia Observatory are greatly appreciated. Hopefully, by working together, we can make a significant different today for improving people’s lives tomorrow in Taiwan, throughout East Asia, as well as around the world.

東亞環境人文整合平台萬分感謝您的支持,我們由衷地希望能攜手合作,共同促進台灣、東亞、乃至全世界的環境改革。

Professor Kirill Thompson, Associate Dean for Humanities, kotviking@gmail.com
唐格理教授 台大人文社會高等研究院 副院長 kotviking@gmail.com
Miss Loreina Sin, Project Specialist, IHS at NTU favorwl@gmail.com
冼汶霖小姐 台大人文社會高等研究院 專案助理favorwl@gmail.com