Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Growing desire to learn about Asian cultures and languages

Survey shows growing desire to learn about Asian cultures and languages
31 March, 2014

The Asia New Zealand Foundation’s annual Perceptions of Asia survey has found that New Zealanders consider Chinese the most valuable foreign language to learn.

Almost all (93 percent) people polled in the survey — New Zealanders’ Perceptions of Asia and Asian Peoples in 2013 — thought it was valuable to learn another language. Of those, 64 percent thought Chinese would be valuable to learn, followed by Japanese (31 percent) and Spanish (22 percent).

People felt it was worthwhile to learn Chinese because of New Zealand’s trade links, the fact it is a widely spoken language, and because they felt it would enable New Zealanders to understand Chinese people more easily.

The survey reveals a gap between the languages considered the most valuable to learn and those widely taught in New Zealand schools. Chinese is the fifth most commonly studied language in New Zealand secondary schools.

Asia New Zealand Foundation director of research Dr Andrew Butcher says the question about language learning was included for the first time in the 2013 survey, as a way of measuring how much effort New Zealanders were willing to invest to increase their knowledge of Asia.

“The survey shows a clear discrepancy between those who think Chinese is important to learn, and those who are actually learning it.

“It also reveals a gap between New Zealanders’ recognition of the importance of Asia to New Zealand’s future, and their confidence in interacting with the region.”

Four out of five people (80 percent) polled in the 2013 survey believed Asia was important to New Zealand, up from 77 percent in 2012. But two-thirds said they knew only a little or almost nothing about the region.

Sixty-three percent of survey respondents believed more should be done to help New Zealanders understand Asian cultures and traditions. Participants interviewed in the follow-up forum said they wanted more general knowledge about Asia and a better understanding of lifestyles and cultures.

Asia New Zealand Foundation chairman Philip Burdon said the Foundation had been carrying out regular research since 1997 to measure perceptions of the peoples and countries of Asia.
“Over the years, the surveys have reflected a growing appreciation of Asia’s economic importance to New Zealand.

“This latest survey shows an increased desire among New Zealanders to learn more about the cultures, traditions and languages of Asia. This cultural understanding is going to be increasingly important if New Zealand is to have constructive long-term relationships with Asian countries.”
The 2013 survey also included questions on investment and real estate. Most New Zealanders (75 percent) agreed it was good for the New Zealand economy to have Asian companies investing in New Zealand businesses – an increase of five percentage points since last year. However, those interviewed in a follow-up forum felt that ownership and control of assets and organisations should remain in New Zealand.
The survey also found that nationally, New Zealanders were more likely to disagree (43 percent) than agree (33 percent) that rising house prices were due to Asian people buying properties. But the opposite was true in Auckland – Aucklanders were more likely to agree (46 percent) than disagree (31 percent) that Asian people were responsible for rising house prices.
The Asia New Zealand Foundation is a non-profit, non-partisan organisation dedicated to building New Zealand’s links with Asia through a range of programmes, including business, culture, education, media, research and a Leadership Network. The Foundation is celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year.

The report includes a panel discussion about the survey findings, in which Dr Andrew Butcher interviews Dr Tahu Kukatai (University of Waikato); Dr Jason Young (Victoria University of Wellington) and Tony Browne (chairman of the Contemporary China Research Centre). In this podcast, they discuss attitudes among Māori about Asian immigration, attitudes towards investment from Asia, and whether second language learning should be compulsory.

To read the full report and the accompanying podcast: http://asianz.org.nz/reports/report/new-zealanders-perceptions-of-asia-and-asian-peoples-2013-annual-survey/new-zealanders-knowledge-of-asia-and-perceptions-of-asias-importance/

About the survey

New Zealanders’ Perceptions of Asia and Asian Peoples in 2013 was prepared for the Asia New Zealand Foundation by Colmar Brunton. The results are based on 1,000 telephone interviews carried out between 1 August and 5 September 2013, and a follow-up online forum. The results have a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percent.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Cyclists Net First NZ Gold

New Zealand won a gold meal and two bronzes on the first day of the Commonwealth Games. There was joy and heartbreak in an incredibly full day of sport. Here's how the New Zealanders fared. More>>

Cap Bocage: Anti-Mining Campaign Doco Debuts At NZ Film Festival

Playing at this year’s New Zealand International Film Festival, Cap Bocage is a close-up exploration of the forces that came into play when environmental issues and indigenous rights became intertwined in New Caledonia ... More>>

Film Fest:

More Film:

Sharon Ellis Review: A View From The Bridge

Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge is Circa’s latest big production, it opened on Saturday 19 July and it is a stunning triumph. More>>

Māori Language Week: He Karanga Kia Kaha Ake Te Tīhau Ki Te Reo Māori

The Māori Language Commission wishes to see social media swamped with Māori language tweets and messages for Te Wiki o te Reo Māori using the hashtag #tekupu. More>>

ALSO:

Book Vote: Kiwis Prefer Young Adult & Classics

To compile their Top 100 List for 2014, Whitcoulls again asked New Zealanders to vote for their favourite books and authors. And while classic novels continue to appeal to Kiwi readers, 2014 marks a significant new trend – the increasing popularity of novels for young adults. More>>

ALSO:

Five NZ Cities: Bill Bailey Back To The Southern Hemisphere

The gap between how we imagine our lives to be and how they really are is the subject of Bill’s new show Limboland. With his trademark intelligence and sharp wit, he tells tales of finding himself in this halfway place. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Book Television Is Coming

Carole Beu of The Women’s Bookshop in Auckland, Graham Beattie of The Book Blog and producer Deb Faith of FaceTV have raised enough money via crowd funding at Boosted – just under $7,000 so far – for 12 episodes, which begin production in September, and will be on screen later that month. More>>

Electric Sheep: Light Nelson Exceeds All Expectations

Light Nelson exceeded all expectations drawing over 40,000 people over two nights to the Queens Gardens and surrounds. The event, with over 40 installations from local and national artists, is in its second year, and organisers were hoping they’d top last year’s crowd of 16,000. More>>

MacGyver: Richard Dean Anderson To Attend Armageddon This October

New Zealand’s biggest pulp-culture event, the Armageddon Expo is proud to announce the world’s most recognised DIY action hero will be attending the Auckland event at the ASB Showgrounds from October 24th to 27th. More>>

ALSO:

Barbershop Gold: Māori Party Singing Praises Of The Musical Island Boys

The Maori Party has congratulated four young men on a mission, who in 2002 took up barbershop singing at Tawa College, and tonight took out the Gold Medal in the 2014 International Barbershop Harmony Society competitions in Las Vegas. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news