The University of Haifa and the Department of Asian Studies are delighted to hold the 12th Biennial (ASI12) Conference of Asian Studies in Israel at the University of Haifa campus on Mount Carmel on Sunday-Monday, May 25-26, 2014.
The Conference of Asian Studies in Israel was launched in 2001 to address the needs of a growing community of scholars and research students in the field. Our initial goal was to facilitate the exchange of ideas among Israeli scholars but the event was soon transformed into an international bilingual meeting reflecting the international character of the field in Israel and the strengthening ties between the local academic community and colleagues from both Asia and other parts of the globe. Asian Studies has recently become one of the most flourishing fields of research and study in Israel. Israel’s three major research universities - Tel Aviv University, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and the University of Haifa - and, more recently, Tel-Hai College too, maintain a department of Asian or East Asian Studies, while a number of other academic institutions throughout the country offer programs and courses concerning Asian issues and languages.
The main theme of the ASI12 Conference is “Asia as an Idea / Asia as a Consolidating Unity,” and it aims to address a wide array of topics and questions relating to the world’s largest continent. Such topics include Asia as a single entity, the making of a continent, Asia’s common culture, cross-continental issues in contemporary Asia, Asia from a sub-regional perspective and Asia from an Israeli perspective. This broad theme notwithstanding, the ASI12 Conference also aims to host many other panels concerning Asia and dealing with its history, arts, literature, religion, politics, society, culture, ecology, etc. Overall, the ASI12 Conference will hold 34 panels with nearly 150 presentations by participants from 15 countries. We are certain that it will prove to be a unique scholarly experience that will contribute to Asian Studies in Israel for years to come.
Since its establishment in 2002, the DEPARTMENT OF ASIAN STUDIES at the University of Haifa has focused on modern Asia and remains the only department in Israel to offer an integrative and modern perspective on the leading civilizations of Asia. The Department was designed to provide an anchor and an infrastructure for a wide range of activities including, among others, the establishment of research centers, the organization of conferences, workshops, and public lectures, the promotion of publications, and the maintenance of exchange programs, community outreach activities and cooperation with international academic institutions.
A great deal of this ambitious agenda of turning the University of Haifa into the fulcrum of modern Asian studies in Israel has already been implemented: The department has some 250 students, including some fifty graduate students; it has organized numerous local and international conferences; signed exchange agreements with several Asian universities; raised nearly $3,500,000 in personal research grants and institutional funds from external foundations; expanded the Nazarian Library's Asian collections to the extent that the University of Haifa is now thought to possess the country's best modern Asia collection and sent scores of students on exchange programs to Asian universities.
The UNIVERSITY OF HAIFA is the largest institute of higher education in Northern Israel. It was founded in 1972 and currently has an enrollment of some 18,000 students (of whom more than 7,000 are postgraduates). Specializing in the humanities, social sciences, law and education, the university's main campus is located on the top of Mount Carmel with a spectacular view of the city and Haifa Bay.
Built on the slopes of Mount Carmel and along the coastline, HAIFA is frequently referred to as one the most beautiful cities in the entire Mediterranean. The third-largest city in Israel and a symbol of religious and ethnic co-existence, it is also home to the breathtaking Baha’i World Centre, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A high-tech and educational center (the University of Haifa and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology), Haifa is conveniently located: it lies within short distance of Nazareth, the Medieval port of Acre (another World Heritage Site) and the rocky terrain of the Galilee region. It is also less than a one-hour train ride away from Tel Aviv and about a two-hour ride away from Jerusalem.
12th Biennial Conference of Asian Studies in Israel 2014 I 25-26 May 2014