The University of Tampere will establish a knowledge hub concentrating on the Chinese and Russian media and including various higher education institutions, media companies and other expert institutions.
Tampere Research Centre for Russian and Chinese Media (TaRC) will offer the Finnish higher education community instruction and research in the fields of media and culture for which the HEIs would not have adequate resources on their own.
The Universities of Tampere, Helsinki, Jyväskylä, Eastern Finland, Oulu, Turku and Lapland have expressed interest in the new centre. In the future, the centre may also include universities of applied sciences and media companies.
The need for education and research in the field is necessary because of the growth of Chinese international media and the new role of Russia with fraught relations with the European Union.
Especially in questions concerning internet governance, Russia and China have rehashed issues related to the New World Information Order, which was much debated in the 1970s and 1980s.
These countries offer opportunities to investigate the status of media systems that are non-Western, alternative or authoritarian as well as the role of media in the transformations of the international power structure.
TaRC aims to create a new kind of learning environment and a testing site for university pedagogy by finding new solutions for open, multilingual and multicultural learning.
To begin with, the Centre will concentrate on environmental journalism and the gender perspective in the media industry. The centre will be launched in a seminar organised on 2–3 November 2017 in Tampere.
The aim is to carry out the first teaching pilot during the academic year of 2017–2018 so that the first year-round online courses and academic modules may be launched in the academic year of 2018–2019.
The contact persons and members of the group that has planned establishing the centre are Heikki Luostarinen, professor of journalism, and Arja Rosenholm, professor of the Russian language and culture.