Tampere Research Centre for Russian and Chinese Media (TaRC) is a knowledge hub focusing on Chinese and Russian media. TaRC draws on knowledge and experience from different professional fields and pursues a multidisciplinary approach in the areas of media and cultural studies. TaRC aims to:

• advance new areas of research;
• develop international projects;
• provide education in a multilingual environment;
• facilitate understanding and knowledge exchange between East and West.

The underlying organisational principle is to stimulate flexible forms of cooperation and mobilise a high-quality international network of partners (academics, journalists, and other professionals in the media and creative industries).

Our increasingly globalised and mediatised world urges scholars and media professionals to seek new forms of work that meet high standards of teaching and research and strengthen international dialogue in the field. Russia and China, two major emerging economies, play a leading role promoting a new international information and communication order that challenges Western media dominance. There is a great demand for wider expertise and a deeper understanding of these countries’ media systems and cultures.

TaRC focuses on Russian and Chinese media in the context of global politics as part of the international communication system, and takes into account the countries’ own national perspectives. By bringing together teachers and students, journalists and other experts in the field, TaRC will address questions regarding media systems, new media technologies, the role of language, cultural values and media representations.

Research, Education, Social Impact

The University of Tampere has strong research traditions in studying Russian and Chinese media, popular culture and cultural history. By strengthening and highlighting these areas, TaRC aims to become an international knowledge hub. TaRC will also build an extensive partnership network to develop an ambitious research brand, thus attracting researchers and practitioners from all over the world.

TaRC will provide learning and training opportunities for students and media professionals from Finland, Russia, China and other countries. Various programmes will allow specialisation in Russian studies, Russian language and culture, journalism and media. TaRC’s long-term goal is to extend its capacities to provide specialisation in Chinese studies. Existing and future courses can also be attended by specialists who are looking for professional development. Currently, Finnish, English and Russian are the languages of instruction. It is also possible to learn Russian and Chinese at the University Language Centre.

The University of Tampere is well known for its considerable social impact. TaRC furthers this reputation by connecting decision makers, media representatives, researchers and experts; by integrating their knowledge about Russia and China; and by channelling this combined effort towards mutually beneficial and socially responsible journalistic practices and policy outcomes. As a platform for topical discussions, TaRC also seeks answer key issues in international politics, media and cultural policies. The depth and diversity of TaRC’s specialisation, augmented by an inherently multilingual environment, promises new academic and professional insights: Russian and Chinese media professionals visiting or working in Finland will be regularly invited to share their experience and learn from each other.

Thematic diversity

While TaRC is not limited in its research themes or teaching programme, in the near future it will especially focus on environmental communication, including environmental journalism, and gender issues. These are also areas of interest among the University’s scholars who research contemporary media cultures in Russian and Chinese contexts related to current issues, such as climate change. The Arctic is one of the central discourses in the contemporary Russian media, but China’s interest in the Arctic area has also grown significantly in recent years, inevitably making it a centre point of global environmental processes.

Similarly, the research and understanding of gender-related issues in media content and professional practice has a substantive place in the research of many of the University’s scholars who focus on Chinese, Russian and Finnish media culture. Gender issues are particularly important in the context of the media industry. There is a recognized need to develop equal opportunities for women in media-related professions and to promote women’s issues in public discussions. In pursuing these and other themes, TaRC adheres to the key principles of interaction, dialogue, and openness.