The Berkeley branch of the University of California (UC Berkeley) will help promote Taiwanese art and culture by taking part in a four-year project called Spotlight Taiwan, the Ministry of Culture said on Aug. 13.
As a subordinate agency of the Ministry, the Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles signed the memorandum of understanding with UC Berkeley. This is the second California-based academic institute, following UC Los Angeles (UCLA) in July, to join the Ministry's cultural collaboration program.
The MOU is an important milestone in promoting international cultural cooperation, the Los Angeles Taiwan Academy stated, explaining that UC Berkeley will incorporate Taiwan's history, society, culture and geography into its academic programs and student activities.
"Small is Beautiful: Arts, Activism and the Environment in Taiwan,” a 3.5-year initiative to promote Taiwan, has kicked off at UC Berkeley since this July. The school is also planning to launch an artist-in-residence program that will host renowned writers, film directors, musicians, scholars and designers from Taiwan.
Under the Ministry's Spotlight Taiwan program, US$4 million will be provided over four years to selected universities and institutes for them to hold lectures, forums, workshops, exhibitions, and festivals on Taiwanese art, literature, history, popular culture and film.
The funds are provided by Ruentex Group Chairman Samuel Yin. So far, 12 top universities in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and Singapore have expressed interest in joining the program.
Among those 12 universities are Leiden University in the Netherlands, the University of British Columbia in Canada, Heidelberg University in Germany, and Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.
The University of London was the first international academic institute that joined the Ministry's Spotlight Taiwan.