The Hong Kong skyline overlooking Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong SAR

Venue & Location: Lingnan University, Hong Kong
Conference Dates: Friday, November 08, 2019 to Sunday, November 10, 2019
Conference Theme: "Uncertain Futures: The Role of Liberal Arts Education"

Early Bird Abstract Submission Deadline: June 28, 2019*
Final Abstract Submission Deadline: August 29, 2019

Early Bird Registration Deadline: July 25, 2019*
Final Registration Deadline for presenters: September 26, 2019

Welcome to The Asian Conference on the Liberal Arts (ACLA), held concurrently with The IAFOR Conference for Higher Education Research – Hong Kong (CHER–HongKong), at Lingnan University, Hong Kong’s only public liberal arts university, with the combined theme of "Uncertain Futures".

ACLA is organised by The International Academic Forum (IAFOR), Lingnan University (Hong Kong), in association with the IAFOR Research Centre at the Osaka School of International Public Policy (OSIPP) in Osaka University, Japan.

Join the conversation with #IAFOR 

*Submit early to take advantage of the discounted registration rates. 

Conference Theme
"Uncertain Futures: The Role of Liberal Arts Education"

Given the rate of change in today’s world, the future has never seemed less certain, to either students or teachers. This conference will concentrate on the role of formal education in preparing students for uncertain futures, and for societies that are changing at great speed.

In addition to the positive aspects of globalisation that have transformed how we work and interact with each other, we must also consider the more negative impacts on societies and the natural environment. Nationalism, regionalism, populism and authoritarianism are frequently driven by fear-based politics, rooted in the idea of an uncertain present, and a scary future.

Globalisation has been driven by massive leaps forward in technology. Technologies have made life better in so many ways, but they have also contributed to great losses of personal privacy, and increased reports of alienation as social media and online life vie for time with "real" life. Until fairly recently, technology was driven by policy, as opposed to the current situation where it exists before any ramifications can be fully considered.

Artificial intelligence and robots are already replacing many more routine jobs, and while technology may create many as yet unimagined jobs, teachers and professors are in the position of having to educate for the unknown. How do we keep the Liberal Arts relative in this high-tech world? How then do we respond effectively to uncertain futures by repurposing liberal arts education? How do we reimagine teaching, lecturing, nurturing, mentoring, and the curation and transmission of knowledge? How do we prepare for students to thrive when confronted with the unexpected? How do we plan for as yet unknown disruptive change?

The past decade has been a challenging one for liberal arts education as it has been seen by some governments and actors as less useful than "more practical" areas of study, by which they mean it is difficult to quantify in the same ways as the sciences, and in particular the "hard" sciences. This has lead, in many countries, to a reappraisal of their role in the face of budget cuts in favour of other subjects, but has also lead to a reconceptualisation and rebranding of the liberal arts, from the futile and fanciful of their caricature, to instead hard-nosed selling of their fundamental need in both analysing and interpreting information, and framing and exploring all other subjects. This is a recognition of their crucial importance in helping foster and nurture the skills that will be required for future generations.

The ACLA and CHER conferences will look at these questions and more. In these times of change one thing is certain, we have a lot to learn from each other. We look forward to challenging discussions, engaging ideas, and helping to shape the future when we meet at the conference.

The Asian Conference on the Liberal Arts 2019 (ACLA) will be held alongside The IAFOR Conference for Higher Education Research - Hong Kong (CHER - HongKong)Registration for either conference will allow delegates to attend sessions in the other.

We look forward to seeing you there!

– The ACLA Advisory Board and Organising Committee

Bernard Charnwut Chan, Executive Council, Hong Kong SAR Government, Hong Kong
Joseph Haldane, The International Academic Forum (IAFOR), Japan
Donald E. Hall, University of Rochester, USA
Joshua Mok, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
Ada Wong, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
Weiyan Xiong, Lingnan University, Hong Kong

Financial Support for PhD students and Early Career Academics

IAFOR is dedicated to helping young scholars achieve their research and academic goals, while also encouraging them to apply the principles of interdisciplinary study to their work. IAFOR offers travel and accommodation grants, and full or partial scholarships covering conference registration fees, to select PhD students and early career academics who might not otherwise have the financial resources to be able to attend our academic conferences.

For information about the financial support IAFOR offers to PhD students and early career academics, please visit our
Grants & Scholarships page. If you know anyone who could benefit from IAFOR’s Grants & Scholarships Programme, please forward this URL: Abstracts must be submitted by June 28, 2019 in order to be considered for funding.


Bernard Charnwut Chan
Executive Counsel of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Hong Kong

Mr Chan is President of Asia Financial Holdings Limited and Asia Insurance Company Limited. He is the Chairperson of the Hong Kong Council of Social Service, Chairman of Hong Kong Palace Museum Ltd., Chairman of the Steering Committee on Restored Landfill Revitalisation Funding Scheme and Chairman of the Committee on Reduction of Salt and Sugar in Food. He is also a Hong Kong Deputy to the National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China and a board member of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority. He previously served as a Legislative Council Member as well as Chairman of the Council of Lingnan University, the Council for Sustainable Development, the Antiquities Advisory Board, the Advisory Committee on Revitalisation of Historic Buildings and the Standing Committee on Judicial Salaries and Conditions of Service. Mr Chan was awarded the Gold Bauhinia Star in 2006.

Francis Green
University College London, Institute of Education, UK

Francis Green is a Co-Investigator on CGHE’s social and economic impact of higher education research programme. Francis is Professor of Work and Education Economics at UCL Institute of Education. He writes on skills, education, training, job quality and industrial relations issues, and has worked as an advisor to the OECD, the European Union, the World Bank, and the UK and Singapore governments. He is the author of Skills and Skilled Work. An Economic and Social Analysis (Oxford University Press, 2013).

Simon Marginson
University of Oxford, UK

Simon is Professor of International Higher Education at the University of Oxford, Editor-in-Chief of the journal Higher Education, and a member of the Editorial Board of the Tsinghua Journal of Education. Simon has worked at the University of Oxford since September 2018. Prior to that he was Professor of International Higher Education at the UCL Institute of Education (2013–2018), Professor of Higher Education at the University of Melbourne (2006–2013), and Professor of Education at Monash University (2000–2006). He was the Clark Kerr Lecturer on higher education at the University of California, Berkeley in 2014, and in the same year received the Distinguished Research Award from the Association for Studies of Higher Education in the United States.

Simon is one of the most cited scholar-researchers in the world in the field of higher education studies (h-index Google Scholar 51, Web of Science 16). He draws on and integrates a range of social science disciplines in his work, primarily political economy and political philosophy, historical sociology and social theory. He works primarily on globalisation and higher education, international and comparative higher education, and higher education and social inequality. 
Adam R. Nelson
University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA

Adam R. Nelson is Professor of Educational Policy Studies and History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his Ph.D. in history from Brown University. His publications include Education and Democracy: The Meaning of Alexander Meiklejohn, 1872-1964 (2001); The Elusive Ideal: Equal Educational Opportunity and the Federal Role in Boston’s Public Schools (2005) and others. He is currently writing a book titled Empire of Knowledge: Nationalism, Internationalism, and American Scholarship, 1780-1830. His research has been funded by grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History at Harvard, the Advanced Studies Fellowship Program at Brown, and the Vilas Associate Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 
Deane Neubauer
East-West Center, USA

Deane Neubauer is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Hawaii, Manoa. He currently also serves as the Associate Director of the Asia Pacific Higher Education Research Partnership (APHERP) which conducts a wide range of policy-focused research with a special focus on higher education. He is also currently an adjunct fellow of the East-West Center, in Honolulu, Hawaii. Deane holds a BA from the University of California, Riverside, and MA and PhD degrees from Yale University. Over the course of his career he has focused on a variety of political and policy areas including democratic theory, public policy, elections and various policy foci, including education, health, agriculture and communication. He has held a wide variety of administrative positions at the University of Hawaii, Manoa and the 10 campus University of Hawaii system. He also has over twenty-years experience in US-oriented quality assurance.
Joshua Mok
Lingnan University, Hong Kong

Professor Joshua Mok Ka-ho is the Vice-President and concurrently Lam Man Tsan Chair Professor of Comparative Policy of Lingnan University. Before joining Lingnan, he was the Vice President (Research and Development) and Chair Professor of Comparative Policy of The Hong Kong Institute of Education, and the Associate Dean and Professor of Social Policy, Faculty of Social Sciences of The University of Hong Kong. Prior to this, Professor Mok was appointed as the Founding Chair Professor in East Asian Studies and established the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Bristol, United Kingdom.

In addition, Professor Mok has published extensively in the fields of comparative education policy, comparative development and policy studies, and social development in contemporary China and East Asia.  His recent published works have focused on comparative social development and social policy responses in the Greater China region and East Asia. He is also the founding Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Asian Public Policy (London: Routledge) and Asian Education and Development Studies (Emerald) as well as a Book Series Editor for Routledge and Springer.

IAFOR Publishing Opportunities

Conference Proceedings

If your abstract has been accepted, and you presented the work at the conference (including Virtual Presentations), you are encouraged to submit a full paper for inclusion in the official Conference Proceedings. Our Conference Proceedings are Open Access research repositories, which act as permanent records of the research generated by IAFOR conferences. Please note that works published in the Conference Proceedings cannot be considered for publication in IAFOR journals.

IAFOR Journals

IAFOR's online, Open Access journals conform to the highest academic standards of international peer review, and are published in accordance with the IAFOR publishing commitment to make all of our published materials available online.

IAFOR’s journals reflect the interdisciplinary and international nature of our conferences and are organised thematically. All papers are reviewed equally according to standard peer review processes.

IAFOR publications are accessible on the website (Open Access) to researchers all over the world, completely free of charge and without delay or embargo. Authors are not required to pay submission or publication charges of any sort. Journal editors and Editorial Board members do not receive financial remuneration for their contributions.


IAFOR Membership

IAFOR is pleased to offer an exclusive 15% discount on any conference registration package to its members. Membership is open to all those with a strong professional interest in education (scholars, professionals, policymakers, researchers, or students), and who share a commitment to the values of IAFOR, as expressed in our mission. By becoming a member, you will become a stakeholder in the IAFOR mission of facilitating international exchange, encouraging intercultural awareness, and promoting interdisciplinary discussion in the hope and expectation of generating and sharing new knowledge. Join us now in this growing global organisation, and help make a difference today.


IAFOR is proud to present its publishing platform, THINK.IAFOR.ORG, featuring the latest interdisciplinary research and ideas from some of the world’s foremost academics and thought leaders.

THINK was conceived by academics, for academics, and with the following objectives:
  • To provide an international, far-reaching platform for the best research presented at IAFOR conferences
  • To make original, high-quality, thought-provoking multimedia content freely accessible to a wide readership
  • To facilitate the opportunity for academics to step outside of the traditional research publishing status quo – to get creative, explore different disciplines and to have their ideas heard, shared and discussed by a diverse, global audience
Content on THINK spans everything from the arts to psychology, business to film, law to education and from history to technology, covering information from every corner of the globe. The format is varied, encompassing full research papers, long-form journalism, opinion pieces, interviews, podcasts, video, photography and more. 

THINK is an ambitious project, with the goal of disseminating the best and most exciting interdisciplinary research to a global readership. Please help us spread the word.
Copyright © 2019 The International Academic Forum, All rights reserved.
You have shown previous interest in IAFOR or its events.

Our mailing address is: 
The International Academic Forum
Sakae 1-16-26 2F
Nagoya, Aichi 460-0008

Add us to your address book

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
The International Academic Forum · Sakae 1-16-26 2F · Naka-Ku · Nagoya, Aichi 460-0008 · Japan