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News from NIAS

Kristine Eck new guest researcher at NIAS

Kristine Eck is an Asst. Professor at the Department of Peace and Conflict Research at Uppsala University. She also holds a position as a Visiting Lecturer at the Swedish National Defense College and as a Research Associate at Oxford University. She received her PhD from Uppsala University.

Her research interests concern the organization and behavior of actors in armed conflict. Her work while at NIAS focuses on patterns of decolonization, dissent, and state repression in Malaya and Burma.
Kristine will stay at NIAS until January 2015

Tomas Cole defends his MA thesis

Tomas Cole is a student from the Department of Anthropology at University of Copenhagen and has been a workplace student at NIAS for the last 6 months.

Last week he defended his MA thesis, which focused on: the existential limits of autonomy on the lives of Karen (an ethnic group from Burma) refugees living in Thailand who have been injured by landmines. In particular how political violence and protracted internment in closed refugee camps plays into intersubjective relations and how people strive to strike a balance between depending on others and maintaining a sense of autonomy.

We congratulate him on his top grade, and wish him all the best for the future!

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Payam Mokari, Ph.D. University of Eastern Finland
Topic: Effects of cognitive abilities on second language vowel learning

Suvi Baloch, MA, University of Helsinki
Topic: Discourses on gender violence in Karachi

Payam and Suvi

Call for papers: IN FOCUS - a new Nordic journal for young researchers on Asia

Monday, September 15, 2014

NIAS, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies has since 2007 run the blog IN FOCUS, providing academics and researchers on Asia a forum for discussions on up-to-date topics in Asia.

Now we want to take advantage of this platform and publish a biannual journal for Master students and Ph.D. students affiliated to a Nordic institution to publish their findings in a widely accessible and transnational forum. The focal point of the journal is the modern Asian societies viewed from the standpoints of social science and humanities. NIAS focus on the Asian countries from Central Asia to Oceania (excluding Australia and New Zealand).

We aim at a high academic level in a short, focused and readable form. We encourage experimental article formats; e.g. interviews, graphs or field reports based on in depth studies. The journal will be freely available for download and online reading on Asiaportal.

Time Schedule
Abstract deadline:  15. September. Send in approx. 500 words, including research questions and main findings.
Article deadline:       15. October.
Publication:             January

All inquiries, abstracts and articles should be send to marked “InFocus” in the subject line.

For article requirements and more information: Here

Ask Ryding-Hernæs new worksplace student at NIAS

Ask Ryding-Hernæs is from China Studies at University of Copenhagen and will be at NIAS for the next 6 months.

Asks explains about his thesis "With my basis on a publication by Ji Xianlin, a renowned Chinese scholar of ancient languages and history who is largely unknown in Western China studies, my thesis explores Ji Xianlin and his political significance and investigates narratives of national identity expressed in the publication. I analyse this in the context of political ideology and propaganda in contemporary China."

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Désirée Remmert, PhD, London School of Economics and Political Science
Topic: A Comparison of Decision-Making Processes and Future Aspirations among Urban Chinese and Taiwanese Young Adults.

Pinchuk Anastasiia, University of Turku
Topic: Loneliness and Ageing Society in Japan: Case Study of the Elderly in Sendai Finland Wellbeing Center.

Désirée and Anastasiia

Wilson Center CONTEXT: Who Owns the Arctic? Part I

NIAS Researcher Aki Tonami participated in the international panel of experts at the "Arctic 2014: Who Gets a Voice and Why It Matters" at The Wilson Center, Washington DC. 

Tensions over security, access, and environmental impacts in the Arctic are rising. While members of the Arctic Council (Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, the United States) assert their established rights under new circumstances, an increasing number of non-Arctic states (including China, Korea, Japan, and Singapore) seek an active role in the region.

In part 1 of this series, “Focus on the Arctic,” an international panel of experts describes why one of the world’s coldest environments is becoming a hot topic.


Heather Conley, Center for Strategic & International Studies
Marlene Laruelle, George Washington University
Robert Huebert, University of Calgary
Willy Østreng, Norwegian Academy of Polar Research
Aki Tonami, University of Copenhagen
Anne-Marie Brady, Woodrow Wilson Center and the University of Canterbury, New Zealand

More information here.


New student assistant at NIAS

Lennart Niemelä is a new student assistant at NIAS, working with the SUPRA Program and NIAS LINC.

I have a M.Sc. in Asian Studies, specializing on Southeast Asia. I am interested in social movements and strategies of mobilization and resistance in the Philippines. Right now I am studying additional courses to enhance my previous studies. At the moment I am taking a course in Religion and Politics at Lund University.

Extended deadline! SUPRA Nordic Scholarship for MA and PhD students Autumn 2014

If you are working on a MA or PhD thesis during Autumn 2014 and need some inspiration, literature or simply just time to write on your thesis, then NIAS has something to offer: the Nordic Scholarship!

The Nordic Scholarship covers inexpensive travel to Copenhagen, two weeks board and accommodation plus a working place at NIAS! A perfect chance to concentrate on your thesis, have inspirational talks with our researchers or collect material in Northern Europe's most comprehensive Asian studies library.

More information about SUPRA students' experiences at NIAS and practical information as well as application form.

NB: SUPRA scholarships are primarily for students from NNC member institutions.

Extended deadline for application: 1 July 2014

For more information, please contact

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Eveliina Kiema, Turku University
Topic: Secutization in East Asian Power Struggle in the Context of Arctic Cooperation

Jenni Lehtonen, Turku University
Topic: Capital punishment and its representation in Japanese Media

 Jenny and Eveliina