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Annette Skovsted Hansen

Associate Professor

Annette Skovsted Hansen
See relations at Aarhus University

Connectivity and life-long learning defines and inspires my transdisciplinary research in Global Studies, which has its foundation in History and Japan Studies and over the past 5 years has included a specific focus on the maritime sector and linkages between Denmark, Ghana, Israel, and Japan. I thrive from engaging with multiple perspectives representing geographic, disciplinary, and human diversity. I have travelled in more than 60 countries, lived, studied, and worked in four (Denmark, US, Japan, and Israel). I have always chosen to work in highly diverse settings from United Nations Headquarters to Global Studies at AU, because I find them the most inspiring. My research and research-based teaching have greatly benefitted from transdisciplinary teamwork. My theoretical research approach is founded in my studies of diversity as resource at Teachers College, Columbia University, and builds on 20 years of managing and participating in transdisciplinary research teams and on 24 years of university teaching. Based on my experience from my 8-year tenure at the Department of Public Information at the United Nations, I have widely contributed with media interviews, public lectures, and knowledge-sharing as outreach activities. I have brought my expertise in history and Japan Studies to all research projects, in which I have participated, and, thereby, learned more about both, as they engage with other disciplines and places in Africa, Asia, the Americas, and Europe.  

Current prioritized research topic list:

Global History:

  1. Global Ports and Shipping: Africa in shipping and maritime studies with a focus on Denmark, Ghana, Israel, and Japan
  2. Japan in global networks of private sector development
  3. Socio-cultural Histories of Capacity Development in Development Assistance Initiatives, 1947-2015.
  4. A history of national language dictionaries in France, Denmark, and Japan, 1636-1936.

Research impact:

Findings about Japanese alumni networks (1959- ) -> establishment of Danida Fellowship Centre’s alumni network (2015- )

PEPP and PEPP II projects in Ghana -> increased awareness at the port, alerted Danish Embassy to developments at the port + George Acheampong’s senior lecturer promotion at University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana; Jonas Nii Ayi Aryee assistant professorship at the University of Plymouth and a completed and submitted PhD dissertation; student assistants Karen Møller Degn, fulltime position at Defense Ministry of Denmark; and Phillip Stenmann Baun, PhD position at European Studies, Aarhus University

Publications about dictionaries -> Li Rui’s assistant professorship at Guangdong University of Finance & Economics, China

In 2022, I received funding from the Danish Foreign Ministry for a research project on Port Effectiveness and the Role of Public and Private Cooperation for Competitveness in the Port of Tema in Ghana with focus on port governance/clusters, communication, and sustainability. The project includes researchers from different disciplines both in Ghana and Denmark.

Read more about the project here: https://projects.au.dk/pepp-ii and follow us on linked in and instagram

Continuing an international network collaboration with Kobe and Haifa Universities about Global Ports and Shipping. Read more about the porject here: 

Participating in initiative to introduce Asian Studies at african Universities


  • 1800-1950 i og udenfor Danmark
  • United Nations
  • Perspectives on Japanese History
  • Regions in Global History
  • Globalization and Development
  • Japanese Development Assistance
  • Europe and Japan: A History of Contact
  • International Organizations and Institutions
  • Japanese History
  • World History

Research areas

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Latest activities and conferences

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