The Confucius Institute at Victoria University of Wellington was formally established and opened in June 2010 by Chinese President (then Vice President), Xi Jinping, as a partnership between Victoria University of Wellington and Xiamen University in China, making it part of a worldwide association of 500 Confucius Institutes operating with the financial backing and support of Hanban, the Chinese Language Council International and Confucius Institute Headquarters in Beijing. In March 2011 we celebrated our opening with a month-long Chinese arts festival featuring concerts, poetry readings, photographic exhibitions, and a film festival. These cultural programmes continue to characterise our University’s Confucius Institute.
The role of the University’s Confucius Institute is to build New Zealanders’ understanding of and familiarity with China, its language, culture and people. The Confucius Institute at the University works to expand opportunities for New Zealanders to learn Chinese-in schools and in tailored classes. It builds knowledge of China’s long and rich culture by bringing in artists, writers, musicians and performers to give New Zealand audiences an experience of Chinese traditional and contemporary culture, often in collaboration with Kiwi artists and performers. Being part of the University, the Confucius Institute contributes to enhancing scholarship about China and building academic links with China, especially with Confucius Institute partner, Xiamen University. The University’s Confucius Institute is part of the its strategy to build its engagement with China.
Who we work with
The main collaboration of the University’s Confucius Institute is with the schools and organisations that teach Chinese and promote Chinese culture. Within the University, the Confucius Institute works closely with the Chinese Language Programme and other departments of the University involved in developing links with China. It works with the Confucius Institutes of the University of Auckland and Canterbury University, Ministry of Education, International Languages Exchanges and Pathways (ILEP), New Zealand Chinese Language Teachers Association and Asia New Zealand Foundation.
Promotion of its cultural programme sees the Institute working with Te KōkĪ New Zealand School of Music at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand Centre for Literary Translation, the Victoria University of Wellington Library, Wai-te-ata Press, Wellington City Council, Wellington Public Library, Alexander Turnbull Library, New Zealand Federation of Film Societies and the New Zealand International Film Festival, Radio New Zealand and a range of local Chinese media outlets and Xinhua News Agency, New Zealand China Friendship Society and other Chinese cultural and community organizations, Dowse Art Museum, Pataka Art Museum, Te Papa and other public institutions, and the Asia New Zealand Foundation. The Confucius Institute at the University values its warm working relationship with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China.