Given the vital importance of in-depth and empirical studies related to China's central-local relations and local government dynamics, an idea was conceived by Jae Ho Chung during 2005 of setting up an international academic network devoted to the research and exchanges pertinent to the themes. After several months' organizational work, ANSLoC was formally launched with its inaugural workshop held at Seoul National University in Seoul, Korea during May 4-7, 2006.
The Second Workshop was held at the Singapore Management University, thanks to the organizing efforts by John Donaldson in Singapore during May 10-12, 2007. The Third Workshop was held at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, under the leadership of Tao-chiu Lam, during May 29-31, 2008. The Third Workshop is particularly special since it is a conference devoted to the studies of traditions and changes in China's system of local administration. Ten papers were presented at the workshop and were revised and published as a book entitled China's Local Administration: Traditions and Changes in the Sub-national Hierarchy (Routledge, 2010).
The Fourth Workshop was convened in Taipei during May 7-10, 2009, thanks to the organizing efforts by Phil Hsu and Tse-Kang Leng. The Fifth Workshop was held in Seoul during May 13-16, 2010, thanks to Jae Ho Chung and the Institute for China Studies at Seoul National University. The Sixth Workshop was convened in Singapore in May 2011, thanks to the organizing efforts of John Donaldson and the Singapore Management University. In May 2012, for the first time, ANSLoC (7th workshop) was held in China under the sponsorship of Nankai University and Yang Long.
The 8th ANSLoC workshop was held in Taipei under the sponsorship of Academia Sinica and Tse-Kang Leng during May 2-5, 2013. The 9th workshop is scheduled for Hong Kong under the sponsorship of City University of Hong Kong and Ray YEP. The 10th Anniversary workshop will be organized by Seoul National University and Jae Ho CHUNG.
2. Thematic Scope of ANSLoC
- ANSLoC excludes studies that deal only with the central government apparatus and dynamics
- ANSLoC excludes studies that deal only with grass-roots governments and affairs
- ANSLoC excludes studies on state-society relations without sufficient focus on local dynamics and cases
- ANSLoC focuses on studies that deal with a wide range of issues pertinent to local government/politics, local development and central-local dynamics, as well as state-society relations embedded in local cases other than grass-roots level.
3. Activities of ANSLoC
- During the annual workshop period, one full-day academic meeting is to be held. The specific format of the academic meeting has to include at least a half-day session of paper presentation. If necessary, roundtables on methods, fieldworks, and literature review can also be arranged.
- While ANSLoC meetings may be open to the public, the utility of an internal meeting should also be kept in mind.
- In case an ANSLoC meeting is open to the public because of the local host's certain needs, media control should be attained.
- At least a half-day local tour is to be arranged by the local host(s) for the workshop participants.
- The local host(s) is to prepare the proceedings of the workshop in advance so as to distribute them at the academic meeting, if not before. For this purpose, paper presenters are obliged to turn in their paper on time.
4. Participants of ANSLoC
- The founding members of ANSLoC have the privilege of attending all the ANSLoC meetings, as paper presenters or discussants. In case any of the founding members should not be able to attend, s/he can recommend a person - qualified to present a paper on the theme specified in item (1) - to the founding coordinator to attend in his place.
- The founding members of ANSLoC also bear the duty of hosting an ANSLoC workshop in turn.
5. Cooperative Work and Publicity
- Actively expanding individual linkages, information sharing and cooperative research is encouraged. Making one of the workshops into a venue for producing an edited volume is also a possibility, as demonstrated by the 2008 meeting in Hong Kong.
- If the papers presented at the workshop are published in journals, authors must acknowledge their prior presentations at ANSLoC, thereby enhancing the visibility of the network.