PhD Conference 2021

"Megatrends in Asia": Changing Societies and Economic Development
Technical, Sociological, Economic and Political Shifts in East Asia 

The annual OBIC PhD Conference 2020, which was postponed, will be held online on the 6-7th of May 2021.

Welcome to the 2021 OBIC PhD conference webpage!

After having to postpone the OBIC PhD Conference 2020, the OBIC organizes its annual PhD conference in 2021 online, through live-stream with real-time presence. For the virtual event, presentations shall be recorded in advance, meanwhile panel discussions will require real-time participation in order to facilitate scholarly discussion and debate. 

As we promised, the papers that were approved last year will be accepted for this year's conference too, however, there is the possibility to update your abstracts and full papers if needed. 

The abstract submission has been extended by the 22nd of February, 2021.

Topic of the PhD Conference

The term megatrend was coined by John Naisbitt in 1982. Back then he defined ten far-reaching global developments that he viewed as important, seemingly unstoppable long-term shifts in the progress of societies. The goal of the OBIC PhD conference is to discuss key, long-term challenges-megatrends-of the Asian region, in respect to social and economic trend research through an interdisciplinary and/or comparative focus.

In recent years, Asian societies have been confronted by the rise of China transforming the Asia-Pacific region, particularly in economy- and security-related areas. At the same time, India and Indonesia are also rising economic powers that are substantially changing the shape of Asian economic power relations. The rapid growth of markets in the region has become more and more important as an element of global growth, however, challenges such as urbanization, severe environmental problems (the climate challenge, air pollution, etc.) must be dealt with too. Over the course of the last decade, these tensions have often turned into local political disputes (i.e. in the South China Sea) and new initiatives (such as the Belt and Road Initiative) have come under fire and have also been fiercely debated in some countries too.

The megatrends to be thoroughly unfold at the conference, is the transformation of societies and the recent economic developments in the world's most dynamic region, and of the interplay between them. At its most obvious, the experience of the global economic balance of power positioning eastwards surely have changed the way Asians live and function. What significant and fundamental changes have the new economic miracle spawned when dealing with the physical and social landscapes of the countries?


The OBIC welcomes papers related to Asian megatrends at its conference in 2021, including the following research areas:

  • Sociological shifts: demographics, migration, urbanization etc.
  • Economic shifts: economic interconnectedness, strategies of economic growth etc.
  • Political and Geopolitical shifts: defense and diplomacy, changing nature of power
  • Technical shifts: digitalization
  • Temporal and Strategic shifts: short-term or long-term perspectives and strategies