Creating Cross-Language Associative Structures
Networks and networking are an essential part of professional and academic life today for both individuals and organizations. They encourage the dissemination of knowledge, strengthen capacity and forge links. Language association networks proliferate in a European and international context. They represent individual languages but increasingly they are multilingual and they exchange views and project-share within a crosslanguage perspective. There are now many Chinese teaching networks opening global dialogue and offering pedagogic support and new initiatives (Tsung and Cruickshank 2011). Greater collaboration between Chinese and other language and cross-language networks would enhance opportunities for innovation for all language teachers. This would have the benefit of enabling Confucius Institutes get more ready access to local, regional and international stakeholders and opportunities. Such linking would represent a win-win situation for both the cross-language bodies and for those representing Chinese. In a higher education context, where language centres and Confucius Institutes are co-located on the same campus, it would seem an essential step as well as a contribution to stronger and deeper understanding of a key aspect of China’s cultural diplomacy strategy (Hartig 2012 and 2011).