Powered by OpenAIRE graph
Found an issue? Give us feedback

CASS

Chinese Academy of Social Sciences
Country: China (People's Republic of)
7 Projects, page 1 of 2
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: ES/J012335/1
    Funder Contribution: 506,296 GBP

    Context Over the last decade world attention has focused on Russia and China as two of the world's four rising economies (BRICs), but there has been little focus on their interface. Furthermore, in the studies that have been done analyses have rarely extended beyond the disciplines of economics, history and political science. They have largely focused on state policies and changes at macro-level and have paid little attention to the myriad social transformations now taking place within and between these two multi-ethnic societies. Yet, since the demise of Soviet socialism in 1991 and especially in the last decade, the line of contact has become a site of rapid transformations and ever widening contrasts between the two countries. The 'twin-cities', notably Manzhouli/Zabaikalsk, Heihe/Blagoveshchensk and Suifenhe/Ussuriisk, that have mushroomed along the border are assuming utterly different characters. Meanwhile, the extraction of strategic resources (mining in particular) is attracting global economic interests, overturning traditional occupations, and drawing in new populations. Aims and Objectives The proposed project, based in social anthropology, will seek to address these developments. A series of case studies will be carried out by an international team with an in-depth knowledge of the region and its languages. The project will study comparatively social and economic practices in their political environments in the two countries. We aim to highlight and identify the key factors, including cultural attitudes to entrepreneurship and the market, that drive their evolution and future trajectories. We suggest that borders and peripheries can shed light on the internal dynamics within great post-imperial states that are not visible from the metropolis; ground level studies reveal emergent forms of global modernity that are symptomatic and may be predictive of future general trends. Specifically, case studies of the transforming 'twin cities' will investigate the highly divergent forms of citizenship and the contrasts in economic affordances and wellbeing emerging on either side - along with the migration flows and new non-state hybrid spaces that cross-cut state governance. Our project will also investigate interventions in neighbouring Mongolia, where Russia and China operate as global actors alongside others. We will seek to understand their different modes of operation in a developing country and their potential political, social and environmental consequences. Finally, the regional focus of the study will also highlight the ethnic dynamics of this border region inhabited by indigenous groups that were traditionally nomadic and Buddhist. The project will examine to what extent minority people negotiate border regulations differently from Russians and Chinese, and in what circumstances kinship, ethnic and religious ties do (or do not) trump national loyalties. Potential Benefits This project will be the first of its kind and its primary contribution will be to provide new kinds of information about a strategic region, which until now has remained largely out of the public eye. The research on attitudes and practices regarding citizenship rights, history, ethnicity, well-being, property, employment, sustainability, and consumption of local and foreign goods will shed light on the fundamental values of the diverse populations of the Rising Powers - and therefore will be of interest to the general public seeking to gain a better understanding of these two countries. It will also be of direct benefit to researchers from a range of disciplines (e.g. anthropology, sociology, politics, economics, international relations, ethnic and development studies) and will interest the growing number of stakeholders with a focus on the region, in particular foreign policy makers in the UK and abroad, development banks, media and information agencies and NGOs.

    more_vert
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/N007611/1
    Funder Contribution: 635,600 GBP

    Red soils cover 20% of each of China and India, the most populated countries on earth, as well as large areas of developing countries in southeast Asia, Africa and South America. They form in sub-tropical climates where excessive leaching from rainwater has produced an infertile, unstable soil that is very vulnerable to mismanagement, climate change and pollution such as acid rain. In China, red soils support about 40% of the population, made possible through the intensive use of fertilisers to boost crop yields. This farming system is unsustainable; fertilisers reaching groundwater, freshwater and the atmosphere pose a significant environmental threat, and soil degradation through intensive cultivation can result in tens of tonnes of soil being eroded each year from a hectare of land into water courses during the intensive monsoonal, spring rains. Red soil management for agriculture affects local farmers who depend on them for their livelihood, the surrounding population who need them for food, China because of dependence for national food production and globally because of the area red soils covers, their importance for food production and the large environmental footprint. Although extensive research has studied red soils, particularly related to management for agricultural sustainability, the integrated effects of various affected aspects of the critical zone, as well as the wider environmental impacts are poorly understood. In this proposal we adopt a critical zone approach, to reach beyond soil processes to encompass the atmosphere above, geology and groundwater below, surrounding freshwater and vegetation. By definition, the critical zone is the constantly evolving boundary layer at the surface of the earth where rock, soil, water, air and living organisms interact. Two essential components are essential for delivery. First, we have the major advantage of the Sunjia Critical Zone Observatory (CZO), the only international CZO in China where soil and water data have been collected since 2002. Second, we have assembled a team of Chinese and UK scientists who integrate a range of specialisations in soil science, with atmospheric, geological, hydrological and agronomical sciences. A skill gap identified amongst the Chinese partners in terrestrial environmental modelling is filled by the UK team, with training and joint positions proposed that will develop this capability in China. We build on existing Sunjia CZO monitoring by incorporating subsurface and atmospheric processes not included in the past. Further experiments in the lab and the field will allow us to explore impacts of environmental threats such as climate change, water scarcity and acid rain. We span from processes involved in weathering minerals, how these minerals interact with life to form soils, and how we can optimise these processes in soil evolution for the benefit of the environment and food security. These processes then enhance our understanding of hydrological and erosion impacts in red soils induced by different management practices. Detailed monitoring of these processes in the Sunjia CZO and other red soil areas provides data that inform our modelling of ecosystem processes. This process benefits immensely from a critical zone monitoring data-set for red soils that will span almost 20 years by the end of the project. The new science generated in this project, particularly the modelling outputs, provides valuable data for policy decisions in China about the management of red soils. We provide training to project partners in interdisciplinary science that is essential to CZO research and will benefit the research capabilities of the Chinese team. Moreover, we bring new skills to the Chinese team in terrestrial modelling. Coupled with our intended outcome of more sustainable food production from red soils, our training and government agency engagement ensures delivery of OECD Official Development Assistance from this project.

    visibility1
    visibilityviews1
    downloaddownloads6
    Powered by Usage counts
    more_vert
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/H005552/1
    Funder Contribution: 251,038 GBP

    The invention and spread of farming around the world was one of the most important events in human history, and it continues to shape our existence today. Understanding this process is one of the keys to understanding human civilization, yet despite decades of study, fundamental questions regarding why, where and how it occurred, and what were its early consequences for humankind remain unanswered. The bones of early domestic animals and their wild ancestors are commonly found at archaeological sites and they hold important clues to many of these questions. New scientific techniques including the use of genetics and statistical analyses of the shapes of these ancient bones are beginning to provide unique insights into the biology of the domestication process itself, as well as new ways of tracking its spread as farmers moved into new areas. One of the most momentous journeys made by early farmers was firstly from mainland East Asia into Island Southeast Asia, and then into the Pacific. This movement is traditionally thought to have begun by a linguistically related group known as the Austronesians. Evidence from studies of languages, pottery, and human gut bacteria suggest that farmers in Taiwan began heading south, reaching the Philippines before continuing on towards the island of New Guinea. From there, a culturally distinct group known as Lapita headed east into the Pacific. These were the ancestors of the Polynesians who went onto colonize the most remote islands on Earth. When farmers migrate, they take with them not just their agricultural tools and their plants, but also their domestic animals as well. When we investigated the genetic signatures of archaeological pigs throughout Island Southeast Asia, we expected the evidence to show that the route pigs took to reach the Pacific mirrored that of the humans. After all, pigs could not have swum across the open ocean to reach the islands of West Polynesia. What we found, however, strongly suggested that the pigs associated with the Lapita expansion did not come from Taiwan, as the people seem to have, but originated instead in Vietnam, then travelling along the islands of Sumatra and Java before reaching New Guinea. The assumption at the heart of the Out-of-Taiwan model holds that all of the individual elements of the farming package first originated in Taiwan, and that each of the elements should tell the same story. The contradiction between the pig data and the human evidence implies that the story of the Pacific colonization was a great deal more complex than previously imagined. By adding to and extending our previous work on pigs to include dogs and chickens, we plan to unravel these complexities. We will start by examining archaeological remains from sites across the region from two different perspectives. By employing newly developed techniques to quantify shape changes (called geometric morphometrics), we will be able to identify diagnostic signatures that will enable us to pinpoint the origins of the ancestors of the examined sample. In addition, we will extract DNA from the archaeological material and compare the genetic sequences with a global database. The combination of these techniques will also us not only to acquire two different kinds of data from the same specimen, but also to compare the evidence from each and trace the signatures through time space. We will also collect and analyze modern pig, dog, and chicken samples from throughout the region to ascertain their genetic diversity. This element of the study will enable us to ask questions about the relationships between modern and ancient specimens, and the degree of hybridization between different waves of incoming domestic animals. Overall we aim to reconstruct a detailed map of the migration of early farmers into the Pacific, allowing us to obtain answers to a series of longstanding questions, and insights into the origins of agriculture, human migration, and civilization.

    visibility11
    visibilityviews11
    downloaddownloads19
    Powered by Usage counts
    more_vert
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/N007514/1
    Funder Contribution: 303,516 GBP

    This research project focuses on sustainable intensification of agriculture in highly productive peri-urban farming areas in China. This agricultural base is essential to meet China's increasing food production demands but is under pressure from urban pollution inputs, soil and water pollution from farming practices - particularly extensive use of mineral fertilisers and pesticides, and urbanisation. We will quantify the benefits and risks of a substantial step-increase in organic fertiliser application as a means to reduce the use of mineral fertiliser. Our approach is to study the role of soil as a central control point in Earth's Critical Zone (CZ), the thin outer layer of our planet that determines most life-sustaining resources. Our Critical Zone Observatory (CZO) site is the Zhangxi catchment within Ningbo city, a pilot city of rapid urbanization in the Yangtze delta. We will combine controlled manipulation experiments of increased organic fertiliser loading with determination of soil process rates and flux determinations for water, nutrients, contaminants, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across the flux boundaries where the soil profile interfaces with and influences the wider CZ; surface waters and aquifers, vegetation, and the atmosphere. To guide the research design we have identified 3 detailed scientific hypotheses. 1. Replacement of mineral fertiliser use by organic fertiliser will shift the soil food web for N/C cycling from one dominated by bacterial heterotrophic decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM) and bacterial nitrification to produce plant available N and loss of soluble nitrate to drainage waters, to one dominated by heterotrophic fungal decomposition of complex, more persistent forms of OM to low molecular weight organic N forms that are plant available. This change in N source will increase SOM content and improve soil structure through soil aggregate formation. 2. Increased use of organic fertiliser from pig slurry (PS), and wastewater sludge (WS) will lead to increased environmental occurrence of emerging contaminants, particularly antibiotics and growth hormones. Environmental transport, fate and exposure must be determined to quantify development of microbial antibiotic resistance and other environmental and food safety risk, and develop soil and water management practices for risk mitigation. 3. Decreased use of mineral fertilisers and increased use of organic fertilisers will reduce environmental and food safety risks from metals contamination; this is due to lower metal mobility and bioavailability from redox transformations, reduced soil acidification and increased metal complexation on soil organic matter. Our programme of research will conduct the manipulation experiments across nested scales of observation with idealised laboratory microcosm systems, controlled manipulation experiments in field mesocosms, pilot testing of grass buffer strips to reduce the transport of emerging contaminants from the soil to surface waters, and field (~1ha) manipulation experiments. Mechanistic soil process models will be tested, further developed to test the specific hypotheses, and applied to quantify process rates that mediate the landscape scale CZ fluxes as a measure of ecosystem service flows. GIS modelling methods include data from characterisation of a subset of soil properties and process rates at a wider set of locations in the catchment, together with catchment surface water and groundwater monitoring for water and solute flux balances. The GIS model that is developed will identify the geospatial variation in nutrient, contaminant, and GHG sources and sinks and will be used to quantify fluxes at the catchment scale. These results will determine the current baseline of ecosystem service flows and will evaluate scenarios for how these measures of ecosystem services will change with a transition to widespread of organic fertilisers through the farming area of the catchment.

    visibility47
    visibilityviews47
    downloaddownloads58
    Powered by Usage counts
    more_vert
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: NE/N007514/2
    Funder Contribution: 527,256 GBP

    This research project focuses on sustainable intensification of agriculture in highly productive peri-urban farming areas in China. This agricultural base is essential to meet China's increasing food production demands but is under pressure from urban pollution inputs, soil and water pollution from farming practices - particularly extensive use of mineral fertilisers and pesticides, and urbanisation. We will quantify the benefits and risks of a substantial step-increase in organic fertiliser application as a means to reduce the use of mineral fertiliser. Our approach is to study the role of soil as a central control point in Earth's Critical Zone (CZ), the thin outer layer of our planet that determines most life-sustaining resources. Our Critical Zone Observatory (CZO) site is the Zhangxi catchment within Ningbo city, a pilot city of rapid urbanization in the Yangtze delta. We will combine controlled manipulation experiments of increased organic fertiliser loading with determination of soil process rates and flux determinations for water, nutrients, contaminants, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across the flux boundaries where the soil profile interfaces with and influences the wider CZ; surface waters and aquifers, vegetation, and the atmosphere. To guide the research design we have identified 3 detailed scientific hypotheses. 1. Replacement of mineral fertiliser use by organic fertiliser will shift the soil food web for N/C cycling from one dominated by bacterial heterotrophic decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM) and bacterial nitrification to produce plant available N and loss of soluble nitrate to drainage waters, to one dominated by heterotrophic fungal decomposition of complex, more persistent forms of OM to low molecular weight organic N forms that are plant available. This change in N source will increase SOM content and improve soil structure through soil aggregate formation. 2. Increased use of organic fertiliser from pig slurry (PS), and wastewater sludge (WS) will lead to increased environmental occurrence of emerging contaminants, particularly antibiotics and growth hormones. Environmental transport, fate and exposure must be determined to quantify development of microbial antibiotic resistance and other environmental and food safety risk, and develop soil and water management practices for risk mitigation. 3. Decreased use of mineral fertilisers and increased use of organic fertilisers will reduce environmental and food safety risks from metals contamination; this is due to lower metal mobility and bioavailability from redox transformations, reduced soil acidification and increased metal complexation on soil organic matter. Our programme of research will conduct the manipulation experiments across nested scales of observation with idealised laboratory microcosm systems, controlled manipulation experiments in field mesocosms, pilot testing of grass buffer strips to reduce the transport of emerging contaminants from the soil to surface waters, and field (~1ha) manipulation experiments. Mechanistic soil process models will be tested, further developed to test the specific hypotheses, and applied to quantify process rates that mediate the landscape scale CZ fluxes as a measure of ecosystem service flows. GIS modelling methods include data from characterisation of a subset of soil properties and process rates at a wider set of locations in the catchment, together with catchment surface water and groundwater monitoring for water and solute flux balances. The GIS model that is developed will identify the geospatial variation in nutrient, contaminant, and GHG sources and sinks and will be used to quantify fluxes at the catchment scale. These results will determine the current baseline of ecosystem service flows and will evaluate scenarios for how these measures of ecosystem services will change with a transition to widespread of organic fertilisers through the farming area of the catchment.

    visibility75
    visibilityviews75
    downloaddownloads147
    Powered by Usage counts
    more_vert
Powered by OpenAIRE graph
Found an issue? Give us feedback

Do the share buttons not appear? Please make sure, any blocking addon is disabled, and then reload the page.

Content report
No reports available
Funder report
No option selected
arrow_drop_down

Do you wish to download a CSV file? Note that this process may take a while.

There was an error in csv downloading. Please try again later.