An international workshop on the World Geographical Philosophy of Shanhaijing and Chinese Traditional Culture was convened at La Trobe University, 13-14 November 2014. The event was co-organised by La Trobe's Centre for China Studies, Linguistics Program and Centre for Research on Language Diversity, along with the corporate sponsor C S Global Pty Ltd.
Fourteen renowned scholars from the US, France, UK, Italy, China, South Korea and Australia participated in the International Workshop and engaged in discussions across three panel topics: "Shanhaijing's World Geographical Theory", "Shanhaijing's Philosophy on the Unity of Heaven and Humanity and Chinese Traditional Culture", and "Shanhaijing—Chinese and World Languages." The workshop was also attended by more than 10 observers.
A key goal of the international workshop was to provide a platform for cross-cultural dialogue to enable the forging of new networks and potential for future cooperative research. Apart from promoting intellectual exchanges and advancing the study of traditional Chinese culture, particularly the Shanhaijing, the workshop also provided an opportunity to build and deepen institutional relationships through representative participants:
"I am very excited about this workshop. It was the first conference in recent centuries where the Shan Hai Jing was seriously studied as an ancient geographical text also containing mythology. Scholars from around the world presented their research. It is only the beginning of many studies to follow. This workshop was historical." said American author and Shanhaijing research expert Ms Charlotte Harris Rees.
Similarly, Professor Changwei Gong from the History Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Science said, "This is a very rare and excellent opportunity for scholars interested in Shanhaijing studies to get together and exchange research findings. This is a significant event for the advancement of Shanhaijing studies".
Professor Keith Nugent, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) and Vice President of La Trobe University, praised the Centre's effort in organising the workshop, and added, "in addition to Shanhaijing study, the Workshop also further strengthened the research in history, linguistics, philosophy, and geography, and [built] direct links between researchers and scholars around the world."
In order to further enhance La Trobe's research profile in Asian studies, a book of abstracts was published in connection with the international workshop, and the Centre for China Studies is currently liaising with participant scholars to publish a book of full papers to disseminate the findings arose from the workshop. Both publications are in English and Chinese to meet the needs of diverse readers.