Baltic Alliance for Asian Studies (BAAS) is calling for submission of panel/paper proposals to the fourth BAAS conference that is going to take place at Vytautas Magnus University in March 5-7th, 2020.

After being organized in 2014 in Vilnius, later in Tartu (2016) and Riga (2018), BAAS Conference is returning to Lithuania. The last conference in Riga attracted nearly 100 participants from around 20 countries, making it one of the major academic events dedicated to Asian studies in the Baltic States. The scope of the conference allows the participants to share new discoveries, insights and future research plans among the scholars from Baltic region and whole world. (more…)

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VMU Centre for Asian Studies together with Fukuyama Transporting. Co and its Komaru Kotsu Foundation invites all to the official ceremony of donation of books that will mark the opening of Komaru Bunko – a special collection of books dedicated to Japanese studies and curated by the Foundation. The event will be taking place on December 10, 11:30 AM at Asian Books Space (Vaclovas Biržiška Reading Room, K. Donelaičio st. 52, Kaunas).

CAS is cooperating with Komaru Kotsu Foundation for several years – together we organized Japanese Speech Contests in 2018 and 2019. The winners of these contests participated in special programs in Japan. With the aim to promote the interest in Japanology studies in Vytautas Magnus University and Kaunas city CAS partner Komaru Kotsu Foundation decided to donate books more than 300 publications to the Asian Books Space. In addition to the academic literature, readers will also find manga – Japanese comic books that are very popular in the world as well as publications adapted to the reading levels of Japanese language students. These publications will  contribute to the activities of Japanese reading club in VMU(more…)

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The Centre for Asian Studies continues “Time for Asia” events and invites you on November 26 to an open lecture given by a visiting lecturer Mr. Shingo Masunaga. The guest from University of Turku (Turku, Finland) will speak on topic “Lost in Translation in Helsinki?: Intelligence Activities of Chiune Sugihara in the Interwar Finland”.

Regardless of Academic or non-Academic interests, Chiune Sugihara and his decision to save thousands of Jews in Kaunas during WWII has caught attentions of many people. Indeed, Sugihara believed in humanity and his action has been highly praised. On the other hand, his early life as a Japanese diplomat had rarely been taken up. As being an intelligence expert, Sugihara was sophisticated in HUMINT (Human Intelligence) and his real value as the expert had already flourished when he was stationed in Helsinki in the end of the 1930s.

The lecture will be held on November 26 (Tuesday) from 12:30 at K. Donelaičio st. 52, room 521 (Kaunas). The lecture will be held in English, is free and open to all. (more…)

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On May 17th, 2019 VMU Centre for Asian Studies together with Komaru Transportation Foundation and Hiroshima University Lithuanian Center organized Second Japanese language contest. The contest began with the opening addresses by Japanese ambassador to Lithuania H.E. Mr. Shiro Yamasaki, CEO of Fukuyama Transporting Mr. Shigehiro Komaru and Vice-rector of Hiroshima University prof. Toshiyuki Sato. Participant’s speeches were evaluated by a competent commission brought together especially for this contest.

Our congratulations went to Milda Magelinskaitė and Matas Škarnulis who won an opportunity to participate in an international Japanese language program in Hiroshima University on August 19 – September 3, 2019. (more…)

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Centre for Asian Studies is starting a new season of “Time for Asia” events and is inviting everyone interested in Tibet to an open lecture “Seven Days in Tibet” given by Dr. Linas Didvalis. The event will take place on September 27 (Friday) from 15:00 at Putvinskio str. 23, room 102.

Dr. Linas Didvalis, who is an assistant professor at Vytautas Magnus University, this summer spent a week participating in the Forum on Development of Tibet and visiting different places in and around Lhasa: villages, towns, schools, hospitals, temples. This allowed him to meet local people, officials from the central government and also scholars from a variety of countries. The open lecture is dedicated to sharing this experience and impressions gathered during this one week about the situation in Tibet, its past, present and future. (more…)

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Senior Coordinator of the Centre for Asian Studies, Japanese language lecturer Ms. Kayako Takagi has participated in the recent International Conference on Japanese Language Teaching (日本語教育連絡会議) that was held on September 6-7, 2019 in University of Vienna (Austria).  Ms. Takagi made a presentation (“A case report of Tadoku in Reading Club of Vytautas Magnus University”) about the activities of extensive reading in Japanese reading club that she established in Vytautas Magnus University in 2018.

International Conference on Japanese Teaching is being organized since 1988 by Japanese language teachers and is dedicated for Japanese language teaching in and around Eastern Europe. This year it was the 32nd Conference that have gathered nearly 50 experts from various European countries and Japan. Centre for Asian studies is planning to hold this conference in Kaunas next year.

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Summer going in a full speed, employees of the Centre for Asian Studies announce vacation. Therefore, if you are planning to visit CAS during July 8th  – August 2nd , we would like to kindly ask you to inform us in advance via Facebook or We apologize for inconveniences.

We express our gratitude to the students, students’ clubs and our partners for the fruitful collaboration during the past school year. We wish you to have a good rest and gather energy and new ideas for the upcoming semester.

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We would like to invite you to a lecture about the factors that determine the learning of foreign languages, especially Korean by Professor Heo Yong from Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (South Korea). The lecture will be held in English.

How does language acquisition differ when we learn our native tongue and a foreign language? What factors are at play when we try to improve our foreign language skills? The special lecture by professor Heo dabs into the topic by taking the learning of the Korean language as an example. Cases highlighted in the lecture display how native language can both help and hinder the acquisition of the foreign tongue.

Having received a master’s and a Ph.D. in Linguistics from SOAS University of London, Prof. Heo has served the dean of the HUFS Center for Korean Language and Culture and the chief of the International Association for Korean Language Education. (more…)

The Centre for Asian Studies invites all interested in China, Japan and Korea to apply for the East Asia Region Studies program (EARS), which is the only graduate program in Lithuania and the Baltic States that is taught in English and focused on East Asian contemporary politics and society. VMU also provides scholarships for selected foreign students.

EARS program’s applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree of humanities or social studies. Same as earlier, the best and most motivated students will be encouraged to study at least one semester abroad at one of our partner universities in East Asia. After graduation students acquire the MA degree of political science. All the courses of the program are taught in English. Research paper and master’s thesis are also written in English.

More information about the program, the application process and other requirements can be found in EARS page. Application deadline: June 27th.

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VMU Centre for Asian Studies together with Asitaski and Embassy of Japan in Lithuania invites everyone to the premiere of the movie “Mikoshi Guy” in Lithuania. The screening of the movie will take place on 17th of June, at 6:00 PM at VMU Multifunctional Research and Studies Centre, room 103 (V. Putvinskio st. 23, Kaunas). The event will be held in English and is free and open to all. The movie will be screened in original language with English subtitles.

In Japan due to the ongoing demographic changes the younger generation is moving out of smaller habitats to the big cities. Due to this a lot of local celebrations (matsuri) are not happening. In order to preserve matsuri culture the main character of the movie Nobuya Miyata is participating in 50 local celebrations every year. The documentary “Mikoshi Guy” portrays how matsuri is uniting people. This power of bonds is traveling to Europe. Nobuya begins to participate in “Karneval der Kulturen” festival in Berlin (Germany) and presents Japanese matsuri culture. (more…)

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