Stephen Chan

Professor Stephen Chan OBE has twice been Dean at London University's School of Oriental and African Studies. He has published 28 scholarly books and was the 2010 International Studies Association Eminent Scholar in Global Development. Professor Chan was an international civil servant with the Commonwealth Secretariat and helped pioneer modern election observation at the independence elections in Zimbabwe in 1980 and was afterwards twice invited to Oxford as a visiting fellow. He has worked throughout Africa, most recently in South Sudan. He was consulted by the Chinese Government on its policy towards Darfur as part of a liberalisation in Chinese policy and was also a member of the African delegation, led by the Deputy Chair of the African Union, Patrick Mazimhaka, to the Trilateral Dialogue involving Africa, China and the USA in the first decade of the 2000s. The firstborn son of Chinese refugees to New Zealand, he became a leading figure in the literary renaissance of that country in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and published five volumes of poetry and, more recently, the first of a trio of novels. Professor Chan continues to work in Africa regularly but, from this vantage point, has been able to observe both the strengths and weaknesses of Chinese expansion. His latest book, from Yale University Press, Southern Africa: Old Treacheries and New Deceits, was the most acquired library book on Africa in the USA in the first part of this year. His earlier The End of Certainty, explored international cultural norms and beliefs, including those of Indian folklore and spiritual literature. He is the Chairman of the philanthropic Kwok Meil Wah Foundation. [+]