Now that the pandemic has abated, from October 8-20, 2022, National Central
Library Director-General Shu-hsien Tseng traveled to five countries in Europe for several collaborative projects. At Tartu University in Estonia, Vilnius University in Latvia, Masaryk University in the Czech Republic, and Comenius University in Slovakia, she held an opening ceremony for a Taiwan Resource Center for Chinese Studies (the signing of these happened during the pandemic). At Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary, she signed a collaborative agreement for a TRCCS and held the opening ceremony. In addition, a collaborative agreement was signed for the Union Catalog of Rare Books. At the National Library of Estonia and the National Library of Latvia, she signed a comprehensive collaborative agreement and donated books to their Taiwan Corners.
Establishing Taiwan Resource Centers for Chinese Studies
On October 10, NCL Director-General Shu-hsien Tseng and the President of the University of Tartu Dr. Toomas Asser participated in the opening ceremony of a TRCCS. Representative Andrew Lee from the Taipei Mission in the Republic of Latvia was also in attendance and spoke at the ceremony. The University of Tartu was established in 1632 and is Estonia’s largest and most renowned university. It boasts an Asia Center that provides a platform for learning and research, as well as classes in the Chinese language, Chinese studies, and Taiwan studies.
On October 12, Director-General Tseng and President Rimvydas Petrauskas held an opening ceremony for the TRCCS at Vilnius University (VU) in Latvia. Also present were University Librarian Irena Krivienė, Assistant Librarian Artūras Vasiliauskas, and Representative Eric Huang. During Director-General Tseng’s remarks, she thanked the Latvian government for their donation of vaccines to Taiwan last year. VU is located in the capital city and is named after the city. It was founded in 1579 and is a famous university with over 400 hundred years of history. It is also Latvia’s largest and the oldest university in the Baltic region. NCL and VU collaborated in establishing the Resource Center in the East Asian Studies Reading Room at the university’s main library.
On October 14, Director-General Tseng traveled to Masaryk University in the Czech Republic and together with University Vice President Jiří Hanuš held an opening ceremony for the TRCCS. Witnessing the event were MU Associate Dean of International Relations Petr Dytrt, International Relations Department Chair Michaela Hrazdílková, Chinese Department Chair Dušan Vávra, and the Prague TECO Technology Division Head Hung-wei Yen. NU was established in 1919 and is the second oldest university in the Czech Republic.
On October 17, NCL Director-General Tseng went to the top university in Slovakia – Comenius University. Dean Marián Zouhar of the College of Art hosted the opening ceremony for the TRCCS. In attendance were Assistant Dean of International Relations Aneta Világi , Academic Librarian Jana Ilavská, College of Art Librarian Monika Lopušanová, and Representative Nan-yang Lee from the TECO Slovakia.
On O ctober 18, Hungary’s most famous university, Eötvös Loránd University (ELU), signed a collaboration agreement for a TRCCS. The opening ceremony was held the same day. ELU is almost 400 years old, making its library the oldest in Hungary. It also has an East Asian and Asian Studies Graduate Institute, which provides important resources for researching East Asian history and culture in Hungary. NCL and ELU also signed a collaborative agreement for NCL to create a Rare Chinese Book Union Catalog for the university. This expands NCL’s collaboration reach in terms of ancient Chinese books. Invited to this historic ceremony were the Taiwan representative to Hungary Shih- chung Liu and the head of the technology division at TECO Czech Republic Hung-wei Yen.
Taiwan Corner Donation and the Signing of a Comprehensive Collaboration Agreement
On October 11, Director -General Tseng and National Library of Estonia (NLE) Director General Janne Andresoo signed a comprehensive collaborative agreement. In addition, NCL presented the NLE a Taiwan Corner bookshelf, which enriched the library with publications from Taiwan. During this trip, Representative Andrew Lee from the Taipei Mission in the Republic of Latvia was in attendance and gave some remarks, witnessing the historic moment of this collaboration between the two libraries. During the trip, NCL also presented NLE with a Taiwan Corner bookshelf with the hopes that the Taiwan Corner can display books on a variety of topics. This will allow patrons a quick and convenient way to develop an “impression of Taiwan.”
On October 12, Director-General Tseng and the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania Director General Renaldas Gudauskas signed a comprehensive collaboration agreement between the two libraries. In attendance were Deputy Director Sandra Leknickien and TECO Latvia Representative Eric Huang. A Taiwan Corner book donation was also held, which added to their library collections regarding Taiwan. Representative Huang spoke and congratulated the two libraries for this historic moment of collaboration.
During the visit, Director-General Tseng donated books to NLL for its Taiwan Corner. On the bookshelf were illustrated children’s books, popup books on Taiwan’s customs and culture, maps, special books on Taiwan’s history and customs, ones on artifacts in Taiwan museums, on Taiwan’s ecosystem, and on contemporary Taiwan literature and art.