Connecting Taiwan to the World

With a mix of established scholars and emerging thinkers, we hope to connect Taiwan to the world in a time of extraordinary change within the region

During the past two months a number of important events took place in Taiwan. From the student occupation of the Legislative Yuan to the controversy over the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, we have witnessed the rise of civil society and heard the great expectations that our younger generation have for this country’s future.

There is no doubt that Taiwan’s future depends on its ability to forge strong and meaningful connections with the rest of the world. The new voices that have emerged in the past two months have shown the world that civil society is ready to become a part of this discourse.

From the rationality of their convictions against the Cross-Strait Services Trade Agreement to the cleaning up of the legislature after the occupation, social activists have shown the world the strength of our democracy and values, as well as the power and trust that Taiwanese place in our civil society.

During this process, we at the Thinking Taiwan Foundation have thought about how we could play a part in bringing these voices to the international community. More than the politics and economics that dominate foreign headlines about Taiwan, we want to show a different perspective and a different side of the story.

In February, we had the opportunity to speak with J. Michael Cole, the former deputy news editor at the Taipei Times, about these ideas and how the foundation could support the creation of a new English-language opinion and analysis site about Taiwan that would share these perspectives with the world.

The result is

There is no doubt that Taiwan continues to play an important role in Asia and the world, from its democracy and economy to its strategic position in the East Asian security framework. And it will continue to do so, even as foreign bureaus close and correspondents pull out of Taiwan amid cutbacks and layoffs.

As Professor Jerome A. Cohen, who is writing in our initial launch, noted, ‘We are seldom exposed to thoughtful commentary – or even simple news – about developments in Taiwan.’

This is the important role that will play in the future. As a platform connecting Taiwan to the world, we will offer critical and thought-provoking perspectives on Taiwan that we think are seldom heard by international audiences.

We will invite established authors and scholars, but also foster a new generation of opinion makers and bring their perspectives into the spotlight. Our topics will include national and international politics, society and culture, defense and features, allowing our readers to make informed opinions and decisions about Taiwan.

We hope that you and the rest of the international community will join us, not only as readers, but also as fellow participants in thinking about Taiwan.

2 Responses to “Connecting Taiwan to the World”

May 06, 2014 at 8:56 am, Jiří said:

I really appreciate this idea and for sure will follow. Looking for reading more! Thank you.


May 21, 2014 at 1:03 pm, Michal Kau said:

A website of this nature is long, long overdue. It is absolutely essential to get Taiwan well connected with the world community. Unless Taiwan is better understand by the world community, it is not possible to win the moral support around the world for Taiwan’s aspiring core values of democracy and human dignity. The Thinking Taiwan initiative should be warmly congratulated and enthusiastically supported!!


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