Visiting Scholar Profile: Fang Chen, Xiamen University

Over the past several years, SPA has created a small but thriving community of visiting scholars. These scholars range from government researchers to visiting faculty to Ph.D. students, and they come from all over the world to study with SPA faculty. Bringing these scholars to SPA expands faculty research agendas and offers valuable contacts and insights for SPA students.

Fang Chen and son GeorgeThis post by Scott Steinbrecher, International Student Programs Coordinator, is the first in a new series highlighting these visiting scholars.

Dr. Fang Chen is a visiting scholar from Xiamen University in China. Xiamen is an island city of about 3.5 million people in southeast China.  Joining her during her stay in Denver is her son, George, the video game champion of SPA (Mighty Mites division).

Dr. Chen is a faculty member at the School of Public Administration at Xiamen University and her visit was funded by the Chinese Scholarship Committee.

When Dr. Chen told her Chinese colleagues she was coming to the University of Colorado Denver, many of them responded, “Where is that?” They are much more familiar with American institutions along the East and West Coasts, and schools like Florida State and Arizona State. But find us she did by studying the work of Dr. Chris Weible, a noted scholar in the field of policy process research and the former editor of the Policy Studies Journal.

During her time in Denver she spoke at a seminar on policy studies in China. Along with Dr. Chen, the panel featured Dr. Hongtao Yi of The Ohio State University Glenn School of Public Affairs.  Drs. Yi and Chen are experts on Chinese policy scholarship. The panel featured short presentations from both on public policy research in China and a discussion, which touched on issues related to the globalization of policy process scholarship and the challenges of comparative research.

Fang Chen and George on 16th St. MallIn addition to participating in the seminar on policy studies in China, Dr. Chen took part in a collaborative governance workshop that SPA hosted this fall with scholars from around the U.S. She also participated in the Workshop on Policy Process Research started by SPA faculty members Tanya Heikkila and Chris Weible, and joined seminars with Dr. Ken Meier and Laurence O’Toole that were co-sponsored by SPA, the SPA Ph.D. Student Association, and the Student Government Association.

Dr. Chen found everyone at SPA to be friendly and helpful during her visit. One of the most useful things she found at SPA was how faculty provide ways to make theories and research methodologies come alive for practical applications.

One of Dr. Chen’s last activities at SPA will be to meet with representatives of the CU Denver Office of International Affairs about continuing and expanding CU Denver’s relationship with Xiamen University.

~Post by Scott Steinbrecher

Categories: Academics

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