Changing Demography, Graduate Employment and Social Mobility in Taiwan

4.15 to 5.45 pm, 3 May 2016, Room 780, UCL Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL

Presenter: Professor Sheng-Ju Chan

As a vibrant economic entity in East Asia, Taiwan has been well-known internationally for its flexibility and efficiency. However, the country’s prosperity is under serious challenge due to the emerging phenomena of worsening labour markets and stagnant social mobility for the younger generation. This paper starts with a concise analysis of the changing demographic composition in Taiwan, for which the author adopts a longitudinal perspective in order to examine critically current employment scenarios by using unemployment rates and wage levels. The results show that university graduates face seriously declining wage levels and unstable career trajectories. Such structural transformation in turn constitutes a major barrier for upward social mobility in the long term. The conclusion suggests that demographic factors, higher education and training, and workforce/employment issues must be seen as a collective whole in order to address these developmental challenges.

Sheng-Ju Chan is a Professor at the Graduate Institute of Education, National Chung Cheng University, Taiwan. His areas of special interests are higher education policy, comparative education, and higher education management. He is Co-editor of the book series, Higher Education in Asia (published by Springer) and is Associate Editor of Asian Education Development Studies (published by Emerald). He was Secretary-General of the Chinese Taipei Comparative Education Society from 2010 to 2014. An author of over 30 articles in refereed journals and PI for over 10 major international and comparative research projects, he is an expert in higher education and comparative education in Taiwan and East Asia more generally.

Sheng-Ju Chan has received a research grant from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan for international sabbatical leave and is currently a Visiting Professor at UCL, affiliated to LLAKES.

The seminar is free to attend, but prior registration would be helpful: please contact  to book a place.

This event is sponsored by the Centre of Taiwan Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.