Centre for Advanced Study

at the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters

Rune Svarverud

Title Professor
Academic Institution University of Oslo
Academic department Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages
Country Norway
Disciplines Sinology
Area(s) of Expertise Chinese philosophy, history, Language, Chinese-Western contacts

About fellow

Rune Svarverud is trained in sinology and chemistry and has worked with issues in Chinese philosophy, classical Chinese literature, language, history and cultural contacts. His main historical periods of interest have been the axial age of Chinese philosophy and culture (pre-Qin and Western Han dynasty, 5th to 1st centuries BC) and the period of modernisation and Chinese-Western contacts from the Opium war to the end of the Republic (1840-1949). He has studied and published on the transmission and interpretation of international law in modern China. Most recently he has engaged in questions related to the circulation of scientific knowledge between China and the West, in particular within the natural sciences, and the conceptual history of this field. In the Airborne project Svarverud is focussing on the changing conception of air and health issues in modern Chinese discourse. He is also interested in how ideas on the relationship between air quality and health have been formulated and transmitted in Chinese education during the first half of the 20th century.


  • This period at CAS has been the best year in my academic career. CAS is an exceptionally good platform for collaborative research with fantastic service and excellent conditions for intellectual work and exchange.