Newsletter 159 – 14 March 2014


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• SASNET Inter-disciplinary Research Workshop focuses on Culture, Technology and Development

SASNET organises an inter-disciplinary research workshop on ”South Asia: Culture, Technology and Development on 13–15 June 2014 in Falsterbo, south of Malmö. Young scholars and researchers will present their papers in this workshop bridging the gap between Nordic researchers in various disciplines working on South Asia. Three eminent South Asia researchers will give keynote speeches at the workshop, namely Prof. Kirin Narayan and Dr. Assa Doron, both from the Australian National University (ANU); and Prof. Dhruv Raina from the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. 
The workshop is co-organized by the Nordic Centre in India (NCI) university consortium, and the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) in Copenhagen, and will be divided into three main thematic sessions: 
Session A: Methods, Fieldwork and Ethics in the South Asian context; Session B: Culture , Religion and Technology in South Asia; and Session C: Theory, Practice and Development in South Asia. 
A clear goal of the workshop discussions is to create strong academic cooperation on South Asia between different disciplines in the form of joint publications or new research projects. Applicants whose abstracts have been accepted must confirm their intention to attend before 15 March 2014. Full information about the 2014 Falsterbo conference.

• SASNET seminar on India’s North-Eastern Frontiers 1790-1840

SASNET invites to a seminar at Lund University with Professor Gunnel Cederlöf on Founding an Empire on India’s North-Eastern Frontiers 1790-1840” on Friday 21 March 2014, 15.15-17.00. Venue: Conference room 1, Department of Sociology, Paradisgatan 5 G, Lund. See the poster.
The seminar is connected to the launch of her new book with the same title. The book  is a richly detailed historical work of the unsettled half-century from the 1790s to the 1830s when the British East India Company strove to establish control of the colonial north-eastern frontiers spanning the River Brahmaputra to the Burmese border. It offers a much-needed reframing of regional histories of South Asia away from the subcontinental Indian mainland to the varied social ecologies of Sylhet, Cachar, Manipur, Jaintia, and Khasi hills. 
As a generous offer from the books publisher, from 21st March Gunnel’s book will be available to buy at a reduced price at Akademibokhandeln in Lund. The number of copies is however limited.
Prof. Cederlöf is currently on leave from the Dept. of History, Uppsala University, and instead connected to the Dept. of Archaeology and Ancient History in Uppsala, and also working as a Guest professor both at the Division of History of Science and Technology, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, and at Linnaeus university in Växjö/Kalmar. She is closely connected to SASNET, being chairperson of the board during the period 2007–2010.

• SASNET/UPF seminar on India’s Democracy in a South Asian Perspective

Subrata Mitra, Professor of South Asian Politics at Heidelberg University, Germany, holds a joint SASNET/UPF seminar entitled ”Beyond Exceptionalism: On India's Democracy in a South Asian Perspective” at Lund University on Tuesday 1 April 2014, 19.00–20.45. See the poster.
The success of India's democracy is put in focus, in sharp contrast to the record in most post-colonial countries. This has two significant implications. First, it adds an India bias to the comparative analysis of democracy in South Asia. Secondly, it distorts the perception of Indian democracy by the proud denizens of the country who tend to see their democracy as  unique, a kind of Indian Sonderweg, not amenable to general, cross-national analysis. Venue: Café Athen, Akademiska Föreningen (AF), Sandgatan 2, Lund.
In his lecture, Prof. Mitra tries to explain why similar origins lead to dissimilar outcomes? Asked broadly of the successor states of British colonial rule in South Asia, the question puts the Indian way, consisting of regular, free and competitive elections, full citizenship, secularism and federalism as the only appropriate path of transition from colonial to democratic rule. India's neighbouring countries, particularly Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bhutan may attach a different salience to the relationship of religion and politics or to the indivisibility of unitary power of the nation, with an invidious choice between their national identity as written into the constitutions, and a radical change in their institutional arrangement. Do they need to forgo these in order to achieve democracy, Indian style? Read more about Prof. Mitra and the Lund seminar.

• SASNET/UPF seminar on good and evil effects of tourism

Nils Finn Munch-Petersen holds a SASNET/UPF seminar entitled ”Who benefits from Tourism? Tourism as modern colonialism – while provider of employment and protector of nature and history” at Lund University on Tuesday 8 April 2014, 19.00–21.00. Venue: Auditorium, Eden, Dept. of Political Science, Paradisgatan 5 H, Lund.
The lecture will give examples of tourism, good and evil, mainly based on examples from Asia, Africa and the Pacific. Munch-Petersen is a social anthropologist, tourism planner and senior expert at the Nordic Institute for Asian Studies (NIAS) in Copenhagen. He holds lesser degrees in zoology, botany and geology, and has been involved with environmental and cultural tourism planning for more than 30 years. As a tourism planner he has worked in a wide range of countries including Eastern Europe, Arabia, South- and Central Asia, Indochina, Indonesia, the Philippines, most of the Island Pacific, Eastern-, Western-, and Southern Africa, Central America and the Caribbean. Read the abstract.

• SASNET seminar on Madeleine Slade, Romain Rolland and Gandhi: Friendship and Work
Romain Rolland with Mahatma Gandhi. Madeleine Slade – Mira Behn.

Susan Visvanathan, Professor of Sociology at the Centre for the Study of Social Systems at Jawaharlal Nehru Unversity (JNU) in Delhi, will hold a SASNET lecture at Lund University on Friday 11 April 2014, 14.15–16.00. Venue: Conference room 3, Dept. of Sociology, Paradisgatan 5 G, Lund.
The presentation is based on Prof. Visvanathan’s essay entitled “Romain Rolland and Gandhi”, published in Think India, Vol.10 (2) April-June 2007. She looks at the way in which Khadi or homespun cloth becames the symbol of the Indian Freedom Movement. Romain Rolland, who was a close friend of Madeleine Slade, sent her to Mahatma Gandhi in India. In the years that followed, Slade became a close companion to Gandhi, and was known as Mira Behn. Going beyond the friendships, was the momentum of ideas, and the forgeing of the plan for freedom for individuals and communities. The paper looks at how this compulsion towards autonomy in a war torn world, makes three intellectuals put aside their personal travails in order to stand as symbols for a more humane world.
Susan Visvanathan is the author of The Christians of Kerala: History, Belief and Ritual among the Yakoba (OUP 1993), An Ethnography of Mysticism (IIAS 1998), Friendship, Interiority and Mysticism (Orient Blackswan 2007), The Children of Nature: The Life and Legacy of Ramana Maharshi (Roli 2012), and Reading Marx, Weber and Durkheim Today (Palmleaf Publications 2012). She is the editor of Structure and Transformation:Theory and Society in India (OUP 2001), and Culture and Society (Sage 2014). Besides, she is also the author of several works of fiction. Nelycinda and Other Stories (Roli 2012) is her latest work, dealing with diaspora communities in Kerala from the 3rd century AD to the present.

• SASNET seminar on the struggle for Azadi in Kashmir

Assistant Professor Farrukh Faheem from the South Asia Centre for Studies in Conflict Peace and Human Security, School of Social Work, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, India, holds a SASNET lecture at Lund University on Tuesday 22 April 2014, 15.15–17.00. He will speak about ”Understanding Struggle for Azadi in Kashmir: Interrogating the Ordinary”. The seminar is co-organised by the South Asian Students Association (SASA) and the School of Social Work, Lund University. Venue: Room 12, School of Social Work, 1st floor, Bredgatan 26, Lund.
Dr. Faheem’s research mainly focuses on Identity politics, Political Mobilization, Religious Nationalism, and Community Development, with a focus on Jammu and Kashmir. In his presentation, he will discuss the fact that Kashmir as a disputed territory presents itself as a space and the site of contestations between India, Pakistan and its inhabitants.
While India and Pakistan respectively claim Kashmir to be their Atoot Ange (Inseparable part) and Shahrage (Jugular Vein), the people of Kashmir have resisted such claims. By attaching meanings to the historical events people of Kashmir have continuously shaped the political discourse and resisted interpretations by others. This ‘meaning making’ as a part of Kashmiri struggle for Azadi can be located in the everyday life of Kashmiris.
Dr. Farrukh argues that the process of ‘meaning making’ can be traced to the two decades of massive mobilizations that preceded the 1990s Azadi uprising in Kashmir. New generation of Kashmiris continuously developed interpretive sketches explaining the range of problems encountered by Kashmiri society. It was this generation which ultimately challenged and replaced Sheikh Abdullah’s brand of politics in Kashmir. This chapter will trace how different actors in Azadi mobilizations have influenced the interpretive processes by which Kashmiris negotiated the meaning of key political events subsequently informing the 1990s Azadi mobilizations.

• Stockholm seminar on remarkably successful health care in Bangladesh
Karolinska Institutet workshop on impressive health gains in Bangladesh. Fazle Hasan Abed, BRAC, Abbas Bhuiya, ICDDR,B, Zarina Kabir, KI. Mushtaque Chowdhury, BRAC.

The Strategic Research Programme of Care Sciences at Karolinska Institutet (KI) in Stockholm organised a high-profile seminar on ”Social Justice through Health: Impressive Health Gains in Bangladesh despite Multiple Inequalities”, on Monday 10 March 2014. The event was held in order to highlight the remarkable success story that characterizes the health care system in Bangladesh – despite low spending on health care, a weak health system, and widespread povertyIn November 2013, the Lancet – the world's leading general medical journal and specialty journal in Oncology, Neurology and Infectious Diseases – published an exclusive series on the issue.
Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder and Chairperson of BRAC was invited to hold a keynote presentation at the event. Other speakers included Dr. Mushtaque Chowdhury, Vice Chair and Interim Executive Director, BRAC; and Dr. Abbas Bhuiya, Deputy Executive Director, ICDDR,B, Dhaka. Dr. Börje Ljunggren, former head of Asia at Sida and Swedish Ambassador to Vietnam and China; Professor Joakim Palme, Department of Government, Uppsala University; and Dr. Anders Nordström, Ambassador for Global Health, Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs were discussants. The event was conducted by Associate Professor Zarina Nahar Kabir, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institutet. SASNET deputy director Lars Eklund also participated in the seminar. More information about the KI seminar.

• SASNET interaction with regional business promotion agency

On Friday 28th February 2014, SASNET deputy director Lars Eklund had a meeting with Ms. Therese Lindsley (photo), Head of Business Development, Services Industry & Cleantech at Invest in Skåne, the official regional business promotion agency for Southern Sweden. It is part of the marketing organisation called Business Region Skåne, which is owned by the regional council – Region Skåne – and the municipalities of Skåne. Invest in Skåne has a dual role, to connect international (including South Asian) companies with business opportunities in Southern Sweden, and to help Swedish companies to internationalise their business. Lars and Therese discussed how SASNET with its focus on academic research and education, and Invest in Skåne with its focus on business promotion, can interact and collaborate on specific issues in the future. Go for Invest in Skåne’s web site.

• SASNET seminar on Democratic Struggle in South Asia from a youth perspective

A seminar entitled ”South Asia's Democratic Struggle – Youth Perspectives” was held at Lund University on Monday 3 March 2014, 16.00–18.00. This well-attended event was jointly organised by SASNET, the South Asian Students Association (SASA), the School of Social Work, and South Asian participants in the ongoing Social Innovation in a Digital Context (SIDC) programme at Lund University. The purpose of the seminar entitled was to provide a platform for the young voices from the region. South Asian students and social activists at SIDC program coming from different countries including India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan explored the democratic struggles of their respective countries and what young people are doing to fight social and economic injustices as individuals and organised movements.

SIDC participants planning for the seminar: Saimun Reza Talukder, Anjali Sarker, Nausheen Khan and Syed Al. Abbas Zaidi.

Presentations were given by the South Asian participants in the SIDC programme, Saloni Malhotra from India; Saimun Reza Talukder, Anjali Sarker and Nausheen Khan from Bangladesh; Syed Al. Abbas Zaidi and Haseeb Tariq from Pakistan. The seminar was recorded on video by Talat Bhat. It is available on SASNET’s youtube channel, go for the recording

South Asia now has a population of 1.70 billion people. One fifth of the population is between the ages of 15 and 24. This is the largest number of young people ever to transition into adulthood in the history of world. Is this a blessing or curse? Each country of South Asia is facing a myriad of political, economic and social problems and it has adversely high impacts on its young. Unemployment, illiteracy, narcotics abuse and crime are some of the many problem youth are encountering.
Venue for the seminar: Edebalksalen, School of Social Work (Socialhögskolan), Bredgatan 26, Lund.
See the poster.

• More information about SASNET and its activities
See SASNET’s page,

Research Community News

• Time to apply for funding from Swedish Research Council


The 2014 general call for applications to the Swedish Research Council(Vetenskapsrådet) for Project Research Grants in all subject areas opened on 20 February. Closing dates for applications vary between subject areas and calls for application:
– Humanities and Social Sciences, – Educational Sciences,  and – Artistic Research: All on 26 March 2014.
– Medicine and Health: 2 April 2014.
– Natural and Engineering Sciences: 9 April 2014.
– Infrastructure: 23 April 2014.
Under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Science, the Swedish Research Council offers research grants to all the disciplines. The goal, as formulated by the Swedish Government, is to establish Sweden as a leading research nation. The Swedish Research Council is one of the most important funders of Swedish South Asia related research. Full information about the general announcement.

• Call for joint Indo-Swedish Research Programme in Medicine and Natural Sciences

On 20 February 2014, the Swedish Research Council, and the Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, opened the Call for a new Indo-Swedish Joint Research Programme (JRP). The aim is to support research of the highest scientific quality in the areas of medicine, health, natural sciences and engineering sciences. Grants for JRPs are meant to promote collaborative projects with clearly defined goals involving at least one Swedish and one Indian partner. The research is to be carried out at the research facilities involved; reciprocal visits and short stays in Sweden for researchers from India and vice versa are also possible within a JRP. Each proposal for a JRP must have at least one main applicant based in Sweden and one main applicant based in India. Research visits between Sweden and India should be balanced in number and duration. Visits by scientists/researchers will be financed through the budget of individual cooperative projects.
Proposals are to be jointly prepared by the Swedish and Indian applicants. However, they must be submitted separately to The Swedish Research Council and DST. In Sweden, the proposal must be submitted by the Swedish main applicant to The Swedish research council. From the Indian side, faculty, professors, scientists/researchers and post-doctoral researchers at universities and those in permanent employment at public funded R&D research institutes are eligible to apply. The cloing date for applications is Wednesday 9 April 2014. Full information about the Indo-Swedish Joint Research Programme.

• Time to apply for 2014 Swedish Research Links and Development Research grants

The Swedish Research Council now invites applications for two research programmes of relevance to low- and middle- income countries, U-forsk (till 2011 administered by Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency Sida); and Swedish Research Links. Scientists within all academic areas are welcome to apply. Deadline for applications to both programmes is Wednesday 2 April 2014.
Project Research Grants within the field of Development Research (a follow-up programme to the U-forsk grants that used to be provided by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida). Grants will be given to high quality research that is relevant to the overall goals of Swedish development cooperation, and the goals for global development policy. This means that the research should help creating conditions that will enable poor people to improve their lives, and/or contribute to an equitable and sustainable development. The grant can be used to cover any type of project-related costs and is awarded for a maximum of five years, beginning with the 2015 calendar year. Full information about Development Research grants 2014 (in Swedish only).
Swedish Research Links programme offers grants for international collaborative research projects of high scientific quality and of mutual relevance for scientists in Sweden and scientists in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, Africa, Latin America and Europe. In South Asia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka are eligible countries. The grant may be used for joint activities, such as research visits between the partners, workshops and seminars (but not for salaries or scholarships). The grant is awarded for a maximum of three years, beginning with the 2015 calendar year, and can be applied for jointly by researchers in at least two countries participating in the programme; one of the researchers must have his/her principal place of work at a Swedish university/college. However, it can only be applied for by graduate researchers. Full information about Swedish Research Links grants 2014.

• Doctoral dissertation on rural energy access in developing countries

Brijesh Mainali from the Energy and Climate Studies Unit, Dept. of Energy Technology, ITM/KTH – Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm defended his doctoral dissertation entitled “Sustainability of rural energy access in developing countries” on Friday 7 March 2014. It focuses on renewable energy solutions in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. To understand the impact of policies in the formation of renewable energy based rural electrification market, a case study was conducted in Nepal. The study has shown that rural electrification has been expanding as a consequence of market-oriented policies. When it comes to selection of electrification pathways, different technological alternatives are analysed in Afghanistan and Nepal. The analysis has presented best-fit conditions for these various technological pathways in the two countries and verified whether they are following the appropriate and cost effective course in their efforts to expand rural electrification. Professor Semida Silveira has been his principal supervisor at the department. The opponent is Professor Benjamin K. Sovacool, Business and Social Sciences at Aarhus University, Director of Danish Center for Energy Technology. Venue: Room F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, KTH Stockholm. Read the abstract.

• THE ranks five Indian universities to be among world’s 400 best

According to the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2013-14, only two Nordic universities appear among the top 100 in the world – Karolinska Institutet as No. 36 (up six positions compared to last year), and University of Helsinki as No. 100. The majority of universities in the top of the list are American or British. The ranking list was published on 3 October 2013. The THE rankings employ 13 separate performance indicators, making them the only global university rankings to examine all the core missions of the modern global university – research, teaching, knowledge transfer and international activity. 
Just below the top 100 comes Stockholm University as No. 103, Uppsala University as No. 111, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm as No. 117, and Lund University as No. 123 (sliding 39 positions down since last year!). Aarhus University ranks as No. 138, Copenhagen University as No. 150 (down 20 positions), and Oslo University as No. 185.
In South Asia, Panjab University (photo) in Chandigarh, India, makes an exceptional entry into the Top 400, now ranked to be among the positions between 226 and 250. Only four other South Asian universities – all Indian – are ranked among the top 400. All of them being Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) and collectively ranked to be in a position between 351 and 400, they are IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee, IIT Kanpur, and IIT Delhi. On the other hand, IIT Bombay has fallen out of the Top 400. See the full THE ranking 2013-14.

Compare this information with another ranking service, QS World University Rankings 2013, said to be among the most trusted university rankings available. According to this ranking, Lund University is the premier Swedish university, ranked as No. 67 (up by 4 positions), whereas University of Copenhagen is No. 1 in Scandinavia on position No. 45 (followed by Helsinki on No. 69, Uppsala on No. 79, Oslo on No. 89, and Aarhus on No. 91. That means six Nordic universities among the top 100. 
QS also has a different ranking priority when it comes to South Asia. Here, IIT Delhi is the premier institution with position No. 222 (photo of celebrating IIT Delhi students).
It is followed by IIT Bombay on No. 233, and IIT Kanpur on position No. 295, and then follows IIT Madras on position No. 313, and IIT Kharagpur on position no. 346. 
The strongest non-Indian South Asian university to qualify to the QS Top 800 ranking is the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in Islamabad, Pakistan, ranked to be in a position between 481 and 490 in the world, slightly after IIT Roorkee (401-410) and University of Delhi (441-450).
University of Mumbai is ranked to be in the gap 601-650, and ranked together characterized as 701+ we find the universities of Colombo, Dhaka, Karachi, Lahore, Pune and the University of Engineering and Technology (UET) in Lahore.  Go for the QS World University Rankings.

• Nordic Centre in India call for Delhi liaison office director

The Nordic Center in India (NCI) opens a call for the full time position of a director of its Delhi liaison office for starting on the first of August 2014. The contract for the position is initially for a duration of one year with a possibility for extension. The director of the liaison office is in charge of carrying out and developing NCI activities based in Delhi. The tasks of the director of the Delhi liaison office in India include developing academic co-operation between Indian and Nordic Institutions, and receiving students and scholars of member universities and giving them practical help. The NCI is looking for a person with academic background (preferably a PhD) who possesses sufficient administrative and project management skills. Cultural competence with Nordic societies and university systems is regarded as an asset. The closing time for applications is Tuesday 15 April 2014. More information.

• Indo-Swedish conference on Development, Security and Regional Cooperation in Central and South Asia

The Centre for Inner Asian Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, has organized a two-day international conference on ”Development, Security and Regional Cooperation in Central and South Asia: Euro-Asian Perspectives” in collaboration with the Forum for Asian Studies at Stockholm University, Sweden. The conference was held 13–14 March 2014 at the Convention Centre, JNU. The keynote speaker was Mr. Ashok Sajjanhar (photo), former Indian Ambassador to Sweden, now Secretary, National Foundation for Communal Harmony (MHA. H E Shaida Mohd. Abdali, Ambassador of Afghanistan to India was the chief guest; and Professor S K Sopory, Vice Chancellor, JNU, presided over the function. Stockholm University was represented by Prof. Per Hilding, Dept. of Economic History. More information

• 23rd European Conference on South Asian Studies to be held in Zurich

The 23rd European Conference on South Asian Studies (ECSAS) will take place 23 – 26 July 2014 at the University of Zurich in Switzerland. It consists of 51 accepted panels, focusing on diverse issues ranging from ”Video varieté: the cultures and forms of new visual media in South Asia”, to ”'Mafia(s)' and politics in South Asia” (convened by Prof. Arild Engelsen Ruud, Oslo University), ”Understanding rural Pakistan: the political economy of power and agrarian relations”, ”Conspiracy, terrorism and counterterrorism in late colonial India (c.1900-1947)”, ”Lost in transition? Negotiating power, legitimacy and authority in post-war Nepal and Sri Lanka”, and ”India in the eyes of the others: world perspectives on India's global role”.
Other conveners from Scandinavia are Prof. Gunnel Cederlöf, Uppsala University (panel on ”Subjects, citizens, and legal rights in colonial and postcolonial India”); Dr. Alf Gunvald Nilsen, University of Bergen (panel on ”Inequality, subalternity and capitalist development in contemporary South Asia”; and Prof. Heinz Werner Wessler (panel on ”Jews and Judaism in South Asia: cultural encounters and social transformations”. Go for the full list of convenors and panels.
There is no separate call for papers as this is a convenors' conference: all papers must be part of an approved panel. All decisions about paper proposals are in the hands of the panel convenors. It is possible to register for the conference from 16 December 2013. Please note that panel convenors and paper presenters at the 23rd ECSAS must be members of EASAS through 2013 and 2014. Non-members cannot attend the conference. It is easy to join EASAS through the following link:

The ECSAS has met regularly since 1968, and has provided an important opportunity to discuss current research and scholarship on topics relating to South Asia within the humanities and social sciences. The 2004 conference was organised by SASNET in Lund, see conference page.
The ECSAS conferences now operate under the auspices of the European Association for South Asian Studies (EASAS), a charitable, academic association engaged in the support of research and teaching concerning South Asia with regard to all periods and fields of study. The hosts for the 23rd ECSAS are the Department of Geography and the University Research Priority Program (URPP) Asia and Europe, both at the University of Zurich. Conference convenors are Prof. Dr. Ulrike Müller-Böker, Department of Geography, University of Zurich (CH); and Prof. Dr. Angelika Malinar, Department of Indology; Academic Director University Research Priority Program Asia and Europe, University of Zurich (CH). Full information about the 2014 EASAS conference.

• Aarhus University invites applications for teaching position in Hindi

The Department of Culture and Society at University of Aarhus in Denmark invites applications for a teaching assistant professorship in Hindi. The position is affiliated with the South Asia studies programme at Asia studies, and the teaching assistant professorship involves teaching Hindi courses in the Bachelor’s degree programme in South Asia studies and the Master’s degree programme in Asia studies (India and South Asia). The teaching assistant professorship is a permanent position dedicated to full-time teaching, including 20% for developing the subject area. The appointment begins on 1 August 2014 or as soon as possible thereafter.
The position requires a proactive interest in new methods in the field of foreign language pedagogy and didactics; understanding of the relationship between Hindi and other South Asian languages. Employment as teaching assistant professor requires a Master’s degree in Hindi or similar academic qualifications. Applicants must have relevant experience of teaching Hindi as a foreign language. If the successful teaching assistant professor is not fluent in Danish, he or she will be expected to learn Danish within a period of approximately two years. More information.

• CeMIS in Göttingen announces postdoc position in South Asian Religious studies

The Centre for Modern Indian Studies (CeMIS) at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany, seeks to fill the position of a Postdoctoral Fellow in South Asian Studies, with a Focus on Religion. This position should be filled by October 1, 2014. Applications are welcome from scholars across the social sciences and humanities whose work represents an innovative approach to thinking about questions of religion in India. Preference will be given to candidates whose research and writing addresses one or more of the following topics: minority religions, conversion, gender, caste and social inequality, religion and empire, religion and democratic theory and practice, and religion and violence. Applicants must have a PhD in a relevant field, such as Religious Studies, History, Anthropology, Sociology, South Asian Studies, or Political Science. More information.

• Swedish participation in the 2014 World Congress of Agroforestry

Eskil Mattsson and Matilda Palm, post-doc researchers at the Division of Physical Resource Theory at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, and members of Forest Climate and Livelihood Research Network (Focali), participated in the World Congress of Agroforestry in New Delhi, 10-14 February, which brought together more than 1,000 researchers, policy-makers, donors and members of civil society.
The World Congress on Agroforestry, co-hosted by the World Agroforestry Centre, the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the Indian Society of Agroforestry, aimed to raise the local, regional and global profile of agroforestry practices and significantly increase engagement and investment in them.
There is growing recognition of the value of agroforestry – integrating trees with crops – for restoring ecosystem services and improving livelihoods. Agroforestry is of particular interest in the context of the “landscape approach”, which recognizes that the forests, farms, pastures and human settlements all share resources within a landscape, and all play roles in both ecosystems, and human well-being. That means that trees on farms and in home gardens, for example, are as valuable as those in forests.
At the conference, Eskil Mattsson and Matilda Palm presented their work on tropical homegardens in Sri Lanka and Vietnam. Together with Focali and the Swedish International Agricultural Network Initiative (SIANI) they also produced two discussion briefs ahead of the event as well as blog posts at the conference.
Read the two briefs and blog posts at
Read more about the conference at

• Indo-Swedish research collaboration on healing of chronic wounds

In December 2013, Spiber Technologies, a private company based at the Biomedical Center (BMC) of Uppsala University, was selected for funding from the Strategic Indo-Swedish Cooperative Innovation Programme, jointly administered by The Department of Biotechnology, Government of India (DBT); the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems (VINNOVA); and the Swedish Research Council (SRC).
The project, to be carried out in collaboration with the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati, is entitled ”Silk2Heal – Developing an Antimicrobial Wound Patch with Wound-healing Ability for Diabetic Foot Ulcers”, and it received SEK 5 m. for the period 2014 – 2017. The project deals with chronic wounds, a health problem that influences millions of people. Wound infection is one of the causes for why it takes such a long time for a wound to heal. Spiber Technology has together with a collaborator at the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati come up with a concept to increase healing and reduce bacterial load in the wounds. 
The project leaders are Ekaterina Medvedeva at Spiber, and Assistant Professor Biman Mandal at the Department of Biotechnology, IIT Guwahati. Read more...

• Doha Islamic Art Museum announces South Asia curator position

The Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) in Doha, Qatar, is accepting applications for an experienced, energetic candidate for the full-time position of Curator for South Asia. The Curator for South Asia will report to the Head of the Curatorial and Research Department. The Curatorial and Research Department is part of the MIA Collections Division, which also includes the Conservation, Exhibitions, Collections Management, and Publication Departments
MIA opened to great acclaim in December 2008. It houses one of the world's most distinguished and important collections of Islamic art ranging from Spain to India, dating from the 7th to the 19th centuries, and encompasses arts of all kinds. Particularly important are the collections of early Qurans and other manuscripts, inlaid metalwork, carpets and textiles. Official pplication deadline was 4 March 2014. More information. 

• Power and Region in a Multipolar Order programme offers PhD position at JNU

PRIMO (Power and Region in a Multipolar Order) is a global PhD programme studying the rise of regional powers and its impact on international politics at large. It is a Marie Curie Initial Training Network, funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme and started on 1 October 2013. The network consists of 11 partner institutions and 3 associated partners from the academic, business and think tank world in Brazil, China, Germany, India, Portugal, Russia, South Africa, Turkey and the UK. PRIMO includes 12 PhD and 2 Post-Doc-Projects. The Indian partner university is Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in New Delhi. More information about PRIMO.
PRIMO has announced three open PhD positions closing soon, among them one at JNU, that is a three-year project entitled ”Old Powers' Reactions and Responses to the Rise of India”. Application deadline is 11 March 2014, or until position has been filled. This project investigates and evaluates perceptions of India within the EU as well as EU policy responses to the rise of India. By using methods such as discourse analysis and process tracing, it provides an account of how particular perceptions emerge and how they shape the responses of the EU to the Indian policies in selected multilateral institutions. The project will then evaluate if India is indeed substantially challenging the status quo and the existing rules within multilateral institutions or rather shares European values and foreign policy goals in many ways but seeks to work for a more multipolar world order. Research will also include a comparison of EU responses to India and to other emerging powers such as South Africa, Russia, and China. Full information about the vacant position at JNU.

• More information about South Asia related research at Swedish and Nordic universities
See SASNET’s page,

Educational News

• Aarhus University introduces Masters programme in South Asian Studies

From 1 September 2014 onwards it will be possible to take a Master’s degree programme in South Asian studies at Aarhus University. Graduates will gain in-depth knowledge of central political, social and cultural tendencies in India and South Asia. They will become specialists with regard to India, the world’s largest democracy that in 2025 is expected to overtake China and become the most populous nation in the world. South Asia is now home to 25% of the world’s population. Programme coordinator is Dr. Uwe Skoda, Department of Culture and Society at Aarhus University.
The new Master’s degree programme in Asian studies will admit about 30 students in the autumn semester 2014. Students choose between two tracks. One requires language competences in Hindi, which can be developed during the programme. The other turns students into international specialists with in-depth insight into the role of the region in an increasingly global world. More information

• Erasmus+ programme offers possibilities for Indo-European collaboration

Erasmus+, the new European Union programme for education, training, youth and sport, was launched in January 2014. It builds on the legacy of previous Erasmus programmes by offering opportunities for 4 million people to study, train, teach or volunteer abroad by 2020. The programme has a budget of €14.5 bn for 2014–2020 – 40% more than funding for the current education and training mobility programmes. Erasmus+ replaces the current Lifelong Learning Programme (Erasmus, Leonardo da Vinci, Comenius, Grundtvig), as well as Youth in Action, Erasmus Mundus, Tempus, Alfa, Edulink and the bilateral cooperation programme with industrialised countries. 
Proposals/applications for action 1 (mobility and joint masters degrees) can be submitted until end of March of every year for projects starting between August and October of the same year. For Erasmus+ and access to the Programme Guide please see:
The programme offers specific possibilities for Indo-European collaboration. From 2004 to 2013, nearly 3 400 Indian students, fellows, scholars and university staff benefited from Erasmus Mundus scholarships; and more than 50 Indian universities partnered with European universities to facilitate academic mobility. Erasmus+ will continue to support the international mobility of students and staff to and from partner countries as regards higher education, including mobility organised on the basis of joint, double or multiple degrees of high quality. The EU Delegation will publish on its website information about calls for proposals and opportunities to participate in Erasmus+ for Indian students and academicians. More information.
The previous Erasmus Mundus programme comes to an end on 31 December 2013. However, ongoing projects will continue their activities – including the selection of students for scholarships – until the end of their grant agreement.

• EU Awards Higher Education Scholarships to Pakistani Students

Every year the European Union provides opportunities for students worldwide aspiring to go to European Institutions for higher education through an EU programme known as Erasmus Mundus. In 2013, the EU Delegation to Pakistan selected 45 students from Pakistan (42 for Masters and 3 for PhD) Erasmus Mundus scholarships to study at different universities across the European Union, making Pakistan one of the largest recipients of this year’s Erasmus Mundus scholarships. More information on Erasmus Mundus.
Erasmus Mundus is a European Union education programme which aims to enhance the quality of European higher education and promote dialogue and understanding between people and cultures through cooperation between countries. Erasmus Mundus also contributes to the development of human resources and international cooperation capacity of higher education institutions in third-countries, by increasing mobility between the European Union and these countries. During the last couple of years Pakistan has received 418 Erasmus Masters' scholarships which include 32 PhD scholarships along with 9 undergraduate and 5 post-doctoral scholarships. The list of selected students for Erasmus Mundus scholarships 2013 is published on an EACEA website, go for it.

• Sri Lanka conference for Youth Dialogue on Global Development

To create an inclusive youth participation platform that enables young people to review the progress on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and implementation of post-2015 development agenda, Sri Lanka is hosting one of the biggest youth conference titled “World Conference on Youth“ from May 6-9, 2014“. The conference is organised by The International Youth Task Force (IYTF) in collaboration with the National Task Force appointed by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Skills Development of Sri Lanka. The main theme of WCY 2014 is “Mainstreaming Youth in the Post 2015 Development Agenda“. 
The world has never been more younger. The current global population in the age group of 15 to 24 is the largest ever at 1.25 billion. It is very important to enable youth representation and participation on development policies and practices at both local, national, regional and international level. 
The specific objectives of the conference include sharing ideas, experiences and innovative approaches for effectively contributing to the post-2015 development agenda and its implementation, facilitating a process that increases awareness on and implementation of the World Programme for Action on Youth (WPAY) and supportive transnational partnerships between youth led movements and establishment of a permanent youth engagement mechanism that ensures consistent follow- up with young people in the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda. 
The conference will hopefully bring together 1.500 participants aged between 18 to 19, from different backgrounds, with special focus on marginalized and underrepresented groups. Applications are open until Sunday 2 March 2014. More information
On a similar theme, SASNET is organising a seminar entitled ”South Asia's Democratic Struggle – Youth Perspectives” that will be held at Lund University on Monday, 3 March 2014, 16.00–18.00. This event is jointly organised by SASNET, the South Asian Students Association (SASA), the School of Social Work, and South Asian participants in the ongoing Social Innovation in a Digital Context (SIDC) programme at Lund University. Venue: Edebalksalen, School of Social Work (Socialhögskolan), Bredgatan 26, Lund. Read more.

• Tübingen summer school workshop on Religion as Resource

The Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Asia-Orient-Institute, University of Tübingen, Germany, invites applications for its Summer School Workshop entitled ”Religion as Resource: Local and Global Discourses” to be held 18–20 July 2014. Venue: Schloss Hohentübingen.
The Summer School Workshop draws on the research expertise of invited, international scholars and current projects of faculty members of the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Tübingen University. Those who have confirmed participation include Dr Masooda Bano, Oxford University, UK, Prof Dr Roland Hardenberg, and Dr Vibha Joshi from Tübingen itself. Papers areinvited from post-fieldwork doctoral students from within Germany and other European Universities on the following related themes in which religion is drawn on as a resource or asset by a person or a community in order to function effectively. Deaeline for submitting abstracts is 10 April 2014. More information

• 2014 Tamil Summer School in Puducherry

PILCThe Puducherry (Pondicherry) Institute of Linguistics and Culture holds its regular Tamil Summer School from 28 July - 6 September 2014. The summer school offers an intensive education in spoken Tamil language at basic and intermediate levels, and it combines classroom lessons with field visits so that the participants can practice at most their language skills in the course of studies. Registration is open from 1 March – 30 April 2014.
The Tamil Summer School was initiated in 1998 by the Department of Social Sciences, French Institute, Puducherry to offer training to language researchers in Humanities and Social sciences. PILC has been organising this course since 2004. Read an article from The Hindu about the Tamil Summer School 2008, (with a photo by T. Singaravelou).
The medium of teaching is English as well as Tamil. The TSS focuses on Spoken Tamil rather than on the classical and written forms being taught in European Universities. The level of spoken Tamil course is INTERMEDIATE.
More information (as pdf-file). 

• Beirut summer academy for scholars on Language, Science and Aesthetics

The German academic research institution Orient-Institut Beirut along with the Berin based research organisation Forum Transregionale Studien invite applications from doctoral and post doctoral researchers to apply for its international summer academy that will convene from 11 to 19 September 2014 in Beirut, Lebanon. The topic of the summer academy is “Language, Science and Aesthetics – Articulations of Subjectivity and Objectivity in the Modern Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia“. The opportunity is open for 21 doctoral and postdoctoral scholars coming from different academic backgrounds such as Literature, Philology, History, Art History, Cultural Anthropology, History of Science and Musicology.
This Summer Academy offers early-career scholars an opportunity to follow up on the debates about modernity, its preconditions and its aftermath by focusing on the multifarious processes and often unique ways in which societies outside Europe have adopted, translated, rejected or produced the global, the modern and tradition since the seventeenth century. It places a specific focus on the notions of subjectivity and objectivity, the individual and the subject, as key notions of modernity, and addresses systems and practices of knowledge production, communication and authority as they developed in the region that extends from Morocco to Indonesia. The Summer Academy engages with the debates on the writing of a more global history by paying particular attention to changing textual and aesthetic practices and language policies. Applications is open until 15 April 2014. More information. 

• Ghent University summer school on Governance at the edge of the state

A four-day Summer School for PhD candidates on ‘Governance at the edge of the state: Public authority and property in conflict environments’ will be held in Ghent, Belgium 15–18 September 2014. It is organised by the Conflict Research Group at Ghent University, in cooperation with the Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen; and the Department of Geography, University of Zurich, Switzerland. This summer school aims for a better understanding of the complex relations between public authority and property in conflict settings, by bringing together PhD students from a number of disciplines in social sciences and humanities with some of the protagonists of the current debate on power, public authority and property. Through lectures by leading authors in these debates and the in-depth discussion of PhD student’s research papers by  international experts, it  provides a key opportunity not only for PhD students to present and discuss  their work with senior researchers in the field, but also to further the debate in this emerging field. Confirmed faculty from the Nordic countries include Tobias Hagmann, Roskilde University; Andrea Nightingale, University of Gothenburg; Thomas Blom Hansen, Stanford University; and Christian Lund, Copenhagen University. More information.

• Other educational news connected to South Asian studies all over the World

See SASNET’s page,

Seminars and Conferences in Scandinavia

• Stockholm double seminar with researchers from IIT Madras
Jyotirmaya Tripathy and Sudarsan Padmanabhan.

Associate Professor Jyotirmaya Tripathy, and Associate Professor Sudarsan Padmanabhan, two researchers from the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras in Chennai, India, held a joint guest lecture at Stockholm University on Monday 10 March 2014, 13.00–15.00.
Dr. Tripathy’s presentation was entitled ”Women's Rights in India: Failure of Morality, Governance or Democracy?”, focusing on the repeated violations of women's rights in India not only occur along the normal fault-lines of caste and class in rural India but also in the supposedly more liberated urban environs. While the contexts and rationalizations for these violations could be debated among philosophers, sociologists, psychologists and anthropologists, there has been a collective failure in the social, moral, legal and political spheres.
Dr. Padmanabhan spoke about ”Indian Environmentalism and its Fragments”, focusing on the origin and development of two environmental movements in Odisha, a state in the eastern part of India. One is in the coastal region involving the South Korean Steel company POSCO which plans to develop a steel plant in the district of Jagatsinghpur and the other involves a British company Vedanta Aluminium Limited which has already constructed a refinery at Lanjigarh and has been seeking permission to mine bauxite from Niyamagiri hills, the hill which is worshipped as god by the local tribe called Dongria Kandha tribes. Read more...

• Kalyan Mandal lectured on Indian Poverty Alleviation Policy

Professor Kalyan Mandal from the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (IIMC) in Kolkata, India, held a guest lecture at Lund University on Wednesday 12 March 2014, 14.15–16.00. He spoke about ”Evolution of Poverty Alleviation Policy in India and Its Shaping”. Mandal is currently Visiting Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) chair professor at Lund University. Venue for the seminar: Dept. of Economic History, Alfa1:3004, Scheelevägen 15 B, Lund.
Abstract: As India got independence in 1947, to establish a ‘socialist pattern of society’ was the goal set by the founding fathers of Indian Constitution. ‘Land Reform’ involving redistribution of land from the rich landlords to the landless was one important strategy (egalitarian measure) for advancing socialist goal. This can also be considered as a substantive policy measure intended to alleviate poverty. However, land reform failed to make much headway in practice. Thus, in the 1970’s emphasis for advancing socialist goal shifted from ‘egalitarian measures’ of land reform to ‘ameliorative measures’ emphasising on ‘growth-with-equity’ through the introduction of Small Farmers’ Development Agency (SFDA) programme. The SFDA programme suffered from misappropriation of assistance meant for the small farmers by the big farmers. In the 1980’s emphasis shifted from ‘equity’ to ‘poverty alleviation’, primarily through a strategy of asset endowment to the poor (people living ‘below the poverty line’) through the introduction of Integrated Rural Development Programme (IRDP). However, the IRDP assistance was often misappropriated by the non-poor and the IRDP failed to alleviate poverty of the very poor. Read more.

• Oslo seminar on Climate Change and Water Stress in India

Oslo Centre for Interdisciplinary Environmental and Social Research (CIENS) organizes a lunch seminar in Oslo on ”Climate Change and Water Stress in India. Brief insights from ongoing Indo-Norwegian research projects” on Monday 17th March 2014, 12.15–13.30. Venue: CIENS Toppsenter, Forskningsparken, Gaustadalleen 21, Oslo.
This is an open seminar organized under the CIENS project “Extreme risks, Vulnerability and Community-based Adaptation in India. A pilot study”. Several Norwegian researchers will give brief presentations about their India related projects, followed by an open discussion. The researchers include Trond Vedeld from the Norwegian Institute of Urban and Regional Research (NIBR), who is doing research on “Challenges to Community-based adaptation to climate change in India”; Karianne de Bruin from the Center of International Climate and Environmental Research (CICERO), who is doing research on “Himalayan Climate Change Adaptation Programme – adapting to climate change in the Eastern Brahmaputra Plains of Assam”; and Johannes Deelstra from the Norwegian Institute for Agricultural and Environmental Research (Bioforsk), who is doing research on “More crop per drop: is System of Rice Intensification (SRI) or Alternative Wetting and Drying (AWD) the solution?”. Simple lunch will be served. Please register your participation within Thursday 13th March. More information.

• Norway holds Afghanistan Week all over the country

The Norwegian Afghanistan Committee is organising a series of seminars, cultural events and debates all over the country as part of the “Afghanistan Week“ that will be marked from 17- 23 March 2014. Researchers, guests from Afghanistan, Norwegian organisations working on and in Afghanistan, and Afghan cultural societies are among the main contributors during the Afghanistan Week 2014. The Afghanistan Week is funded by the Freedom of Expression Foundation (Fritt Ord) and the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad). Chr. Michelsen Institutt (CMI) in Bergen is one of the key research institutions involved in the planning.
Afghanistan is at a crossroad. Presidential elections will be held in April. By the end of the year, most of the international military forces will have left. Norway’s military involvement in Afghanistan has lasted for years, and the Norwegian government has committed to a high level of civilian aid in the years to come. Norway’s involvement, as well as the situation in Afghanistan, calls for public debate on Norway’s role, and on Afghanistan’s future. What is the state of the Afghanistan we’re leaving? Did we practice what we preached? What do we do in the years ahead? More information.  

• Inaugural lecture for Thomas Blom Hansen in Copenhagen

Thomas Blom Hansen, Professor in South Asian Studies and in Anthropology at Stanford University will give his inaugural lecture as Adjunct Professor connected to South Asian Studies at the Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen. He will speak about ”The Sacrificial Self Recasting Renunciation in South Asia”. The seminar, being organised by the Centre of Global South Asian Studies, will be held on Friday 21 March 2014, 14.00 – 16.00. Venue: Room 27.0.09, building 27, Faculty of Humanities, Njalsgade, Copenhagen.
Thomas Blom Hansen is the Reliance-Dhirubhai Ambani Professor of Anthropology and South Asian Studies at Stanford University where he also is the director of the Center for South Asia. He has worked on Hindu nationalism, religious conflict and urban culture in India and has also conducted a long term study of religious and social transformations in a township in post apartheid South Africa. 
In his presentation, he argues that asceticism and renunciation are too associated with an upper caste Hindu tradition, and with a claim to inhabit a universal moral space, to properly explain the moral and political force of a whole range of social and political movements across South Asia. Instead he proposes that sacrifice, and sacrificial acts, provide a stronger and more differentiated entry into the question of the wide variety of modern convictions in South Asia, also deployed by marginal and minority groups such as Dalits, Muslims, Adivasis. More information about the seminar.

• William Mazzarella lectures on Publicity and Censorship in Bombay Cinema

The Centre of Global South Asian Studies, University of Copenhagen, invites to an open seminar on Publicity and Censorship in Bombay Cinema with Associate Professor William Mazzarella from the Dept. of Anthropology, Chicago University, USA, on Monday 24 March 2014, 13-15. The title of his presentation is ”Who the Hell Do the Censors Think They Are?”, focusing on by what right or qualification one group of people can decide what their fellow citizens may or may not see at the movies? Why do the images that supposedly injure one group of people leave another unaffected? This lecture situates these persistent questions vis-à-vis the longer history of film censorship in India, showing how a set of colonial debates around the force and meaning of mass mediated images continues to animate present day controversies over the power, promise and danger of film. Venue: 27.0.17, Karen Blixens Vej 4, Faculty of Humanities, University of Copenhagen.
William Mazzarella is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago. He is the author of Shoveling Smoke: Advertising and Globalization in Contemporary India (2003) and Censorium: Cinema and the Open Edge of Mass Publicity (2013). He is also the co-editor, with Raminder Kaur, of Censorship in South Asia: Cultural Regulation from Sedition to Seduction (2009). Under the rubric ‘The Mana of Mass Society’ he is currently revisiting classic anthropological theory for unexpected clues to the magic of mass publicity.

• Gothenburg seminar on Indian Economy in the year of General Election

Ashok Thampy, Associate Professor in Finance at the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (IIMB) holds a breakfast seminar entitled ”The Year of General Election: On the Indian Economy and Business” in Gothenburg on Tuesday 25 March 2014, 08.00–10.00. Dr. Thampy, who is also a visiting professor at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg, will discuss the occuring claim that the Indian economy is at an inflection point, and that the forthcoming general election is pivotal for India’s future development. His areas of interest are corporate finance, financial markets, banking, and regulation. The seminar is jointly organised by University of Gothenburg, Business Region Göteborg, and the Sweden-India Business Council. Venue: School of Business, Economics and Law, hall E 45, House E, 4/F, Vasagatan 1, Göteborg. Pre-registration is needed. More information.

• Copenhagen seminar on Social Entrepreneurship for Growth

The Department of Inter-cultural Communication and Management at Copenhagen Business School (CBS) in Frederiksberg organises atwo-day conference entitled ”Co-Creating Social Entrepreneurship for Growth” on 2–3 April 2014. Keynote speakers include Professor Bibek Banerjee, President of the Institute of Management Technology (IMT) in Ghaziabad. The objective of the conference is to disseminate the cross country case studies of how social entrepreneur’s co- create their solutions across four regions of the world, India, Brazil, Bulgaria and Denmark, clarify the implications for theory building based on the case studies; and explore how to develop Management teaching around social enterprise. 
The Co-creating social entrepreneurship conference acknowledges the role of social entrepreneurship in playing an important role in generating economic growth, besides social entrepreneurs being socially minded. They are immensely innovative and have the ability to infuse the message of innovation in their respective societies as their frame of reference for their work is social good with a sustainable business model. In effect they refine the NGO framework enabling the targeted delivery of social good in a financially sustainable manner. Deadline for registrations is 25th March. More information.

• Linnaeus University seminar on Education and Entrepreneurship in India

The Linnaeus University in Växjö/Kalmar organises a one-day seminar entitled ”Education and Entrepreneurship in India – New challenges, new opportunities” in Växjö on Thursday 3 April 2014, 09.00–16.00. The purpose is to highlight, inspire and learn more about India and collaboration possibilities in India. The event focuses on education and entrepreneurship in the belief that both perspectives could learn from each other, but also on busnes opportunities. It is targeted towards staff and students at the university that wish to learn more about India and how to find collaboration possibilities. The event is free of charge, but registration is needed. Venue: Room Myrdal, House K, Entrance 4, Linnaeus University campus Växjö, Georg Lückligs väg.
The speakers include 
Professor Chandra B. Sharma (photo) from the School of Education, Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) in New Delhi, who will speak about Higher Education in India; and Indian Ambassador Mrs. Banashri Bose Harrison, who will speak about India-Sweden Relations. Dr. Sirpa Tenhunen, Director for the Nordic Centre in India  (NCI) will present its activities; and the SASNET Director, Dr. Anna Lindberg, will speak about the fifteen years of SASNET networking on South Asia. In the afternoon, business representatives from IKEA and Oria will talk about their India experiences; and finally Mr. Robin Sukhia, Secretary General, Sweden-India Business Council (SIBC), will give a presentation entitled ”How to do business in India”. 
Last day to register is 24 March 2014. More information, including registration form.

• Umeå University co-organises second Conference on Global Public Health in Colombo

In a joint initiative, Umeå University and the International Centre for Research & Development (ICRD) in Sri Lanka, organizes a second International Conference on Global Public Health (GPH 2014) in Colombo on 3–4 July 2014.
The contact persons are Research Coordinator Raman Preet (photo) at Epidemiology and Global Health/Umeå International School of Public HealthUmeå University, and Prabhath Patabendi at ICRD.
The conference focuses on development agenda at a cross-roads, with education, equality and economy the three pillars as themes that push the global health agenda. Considering the fact that all health professions have stakes in the outcomes of any such deliberation the organisers expect more cross and multi-disciplinary representation than their first conference that was successfully held in December 2012 with delegates from 35 countries, both north and south of globe represented. The GPH conferences are planned and organized by young public health professionals with unconditional support from their eminent seniors. More information about the GPH 2014.

• CROP workshop on Child poverty, youth (un)employment and social inclusion

The Comparative Research Programme on Poverty (CROP), based at University of Bergen, Norway, organises a workshop on ”Child poverty, youth (un)employment and social inclusion” on 19–21 November 2014 in Athens, Greece. It is co-organised by the Institute of Labour, and Democritus University of Thrace. This workshop will focus on the crucial issue of child and youth poverty and critically raise the question of what policy strategies can break the vicious cycle of inter-generational poverty transmission. The lack of protection against child poverty not only constitutes a violation of basic human rights but it also entails high social and economic costs. Living in poverty has a negative impact on their current family and social life as well as on the long-term. Deadline for submitting abstracts is 30 May 2014. Full information about the workshop.

• Lund University symposium on Social Resistance in Non-Democracies

The Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University will be organizing an international symposium on “Social Resistance in Non-Democracies” from 24 to 26 November 2014. This symposium aims to understand different types of social resistance in non-democracies, and to what extent they have yielded significant political claims. How and why are some social resistance movements successful in eliciting reactions and compromises from the state, while others do not? Through analyzing case studies from Asia, this symposium also compares the active and dynamic power relationships between social resistance actors and the regimes, as well as reactions of the regimes towards these resistances. The symposium features invited lectures and peer-reviewed paper presentations. The scope of the symposium includes case studies of social resistance from Southeast Asia, East Asia, and South Asia. Interested speakers are invited to submit paper proposals before 30 June 2014. More information.

• Information about South Asia related lectures and seminars

Conferences and workshops outside Scandinavia

• Cambridge Conference on Economic Development in South Asia

The Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, Cabridge (CRASSH), is hosting a conference entitled ”Institutions and their Discontents: Rethinking Economic Development in South Asia” on the  17-18 March 2014. Venue: CRASSH, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT - SG1&2. Participating convenors are Atiyab Sultan, Faculty of History, University of Cambridge, Tayyab Safdar, POLIS, University of Cambridge, Shan Aman Rana, Economics, London School of Economics, Mahreen Mahmud, Economics, University of Kent. 
The conference aims to bring together leading economists, political scientists and historians to debate a key tenet of modern development theory: the crucial link between the development of strong institutions and sustained economic growth. The primacy accorded to institutions by eminent scholars like Dani Rodrik and Daron Acemoglu has been challenged by academics like Ha-joon Chang, but the debate has remained closeted among economists. This conference aims to enrich and expand the dialogue by engaging experts from other disciplines like sociology, politics and history to contextualise the emergence of institutions in their historical and socio-political context. The geographical focus on South Asia will enable the discussion to be grounded and targeted at understanding one of the poorest regions of the world, often castigated for its weak and corrupt institutions. The diversity in the fortunes of India and other regional players like Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, will allow a critical appreciation of other factors helping or hindering economic growth with or without strong institutions. More information.

• Berlin workshop on Regional Belonging in South and Central Asia

A workshop on ”Transregional Crossroads of Social Interaction: the Shifting Meaning of Regional Belonging in South and Central Asia” will be held in Berlin, Germany, on 21 March 2014. It is organised by the Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO), the only German research institute devoted to an interdisciplinary and comparative study of the Middle East, Africa, Central Asia, South and Southeast Asia from a historical perspective. Current research focuses on the interaction between predominantly Muslim societies and their relations with non-Muslim neighbours.
The workshop at ZMO within the Crossroads Asia programme seeks to explore the shifting meaning of regional belonging across the neighbouring regions of South and Central Asia. It proposes to read the transregional interaction here in terms of social, economic, cultural and religious interaction. It thereby focuses on new forms of clustering of such patterns of interaction which allow for new forms of belonging. They can be more local but also more expansive than previous notions of area and region challenging the political area studies logic of the cold war period based on bounded areas. The re-emergence of assertion of cultural, religious and social belonging equally challenges administrative and political logics in various localities as well as across conventional regional boundaries. Full information about the workshop.

• Delhi conference on Textual and Lived Religions: Precepts and Practices

A conference on ”Textual and Lived Religions: Precepts and Practices” will be held at Jamia Millia Islamia University in Delhi on 21–22 March 2014. It seeks to explore the complex relationships between the inviolable written words of canonical and non-canonical texts and their dialectics and dimensions in society. Evidence from archaeology, epigraphy, visual and performing arts, sociological enquiries, context-sensitive case studies, anthropological data, counter-cultures, and orally transmitted folk and primal religions, often questions and deviates from the established and traditional forms considered 'authentic'. Venue: Tagore Hall, Dayar-e-Mir, Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi.  More information.

• Lahore conference-workshop on The Global War Centenary 1914/2014

 The Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Lahore, Pakistan, is hosting an conference-workshop entitled ”The Global War Centenary, 1914-2014” on the 21-23 March 2014. The impending withdrawal of the United States’ military forces from Afghanistan in 2014 follows one hundred years after the outbreak of the First World War; this centenary of continuous global conflict invites critical reflection on the place of war in modern history. Professors Bruce Cumings (University of Chicago), Gopal Balakrishnan (University of California, Santa Cruz), and Dirk Moses (European University Institute) shall present keynote addresses in open plenary sessions and serve as critical commentators during the event. 
This conference-workshop identifies war as an essential and perennial feature of modernity rather than the aberrational violation of sovereignty or the outbreak of inter-state violence. Inasmuch as war is an event, it is also a process that defines the modern world; it represents a synthesis of historical developments that disregarded sixteenth-century notions of sovereignty which had prioritized the state as a repository of authority, power, and rational collective action. Viewed over the longue durée, the roots of war are traceable to the very basis of economic and political modernization, and in developments central to our age: industrialization and economic development; imperial consolidation and anti-colonial resistance; state-formation and nationalism; ideological warfare and alliance building; revolutionary Marxism and transnational capitalism; identity politics and seessionist movements. The Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at LUMS is pleased to host this dialogue in Lahore. More information.

• Berlin workshop on Transregional Crossroads of Social Interaction

A workshop entitled ”Transregional Crossroads of Social Interaction: the Shifting Meaning of Regional Belonging in South and Central Asia” is organized on 21 March 2014 by Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) in Berlin, Germany. The workshop at ZMO within the Crossroads Asia programme seeks to explore the shifting meaning of regional belonging across the neighbouring regions of South and Central Asia. It proposes to read the transregional interaction here in terms of social, economic, cultural and religious interaction. The organisers invite papers that analyse and discuss contemporary and modern historical representations of such interaction in the regions stretching from West Asia to South and Central Asia across conventional regional divides. More information.

• 10th International Conference on Labour History in Noida

The Association of Indian Labour Historians invites proposals for its Tenth International Conference on Labour History 22–24 
March 2014 at V.V. Giri National Labour Institute, Noida/New Delhi, India. The theme for the conference is Labour History: A Return to Politics? The conference is organized by the association 
of Indian Labour Historians and v.v. Giri National Labour Institute. 
Why is a consideration of a political turn important today? Since the end of the 1970s there have been massive changes in the structure and form of labour. These changes were marked by the marginalization of organized industry, a shift of manufacturing industries from the West to the East; expansions in the service sector, especially in the information industry. As informalisation spread across the globe precarious employment outstripped stable standard jobs. Trajectories of working lives and careers were drastically altered. Work shifted to the home, blurring the distinction between private and working space. New forms of feminization emerged across the globe affecting the developed and developing world alike. More information. 

• Second Karachi seminar on Sindh Through the Centuries

Sindh Madressatul Islam University (SMIU) in Karachi, Pakistan is organizing the Second International Seminar on “Sindh Through the Centuries” 24–26 March 2014. The seminar will focus on history, culture, language, archeology, anthropology, cuisine, arts and crafts of the province of Sindh, which has the distinction of being the seat of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization. The seminar is convened by eminent historian Dr Hamida Khuhro. Deadline for submitting papers is 31 January 2014.
The objective of the Seminar is to share the latest research on history, culture, language and other aspects of the region, which has the distinction of being the seat of ancient Indus Valley Civilization. In addition to the scholarly proceedings of the Seminar, various exhibitions are to be held during the duration of the Seminar, highlighting Sindh’s richness in arts, crafts and literature. Exhibitions of photographs, books and documentaries depicting Sindh are also part of the elaborate program. Further, Sindh has very rich traditions in music, particularly in its mystic music. Live performances of traditional Sindhi music have been made a part of the cultural activities during the evenings of the Seminar days.
In a nutshell, the Seminar is to rediscover this ancient and mysterious land of Indus, highlighting the latest discoveries and research on various aspects of life in Sindh from pre-historic times to the present.  
Here it may be noted that the first International Seminar on “Sindh through the Centuries” was held at Karachi in March 1975 wherein scholars from all over the world had shared their research on various aspects of Sindh. Sindh Madressatul Islam is one of the oldest modern Muslim educational institutions in South Asia. More information about the seminar.

• Indian Social Policy Association holds inaugural workshop at Jindal Global University

Jindal Global University in Sonepat, Haryana, India, will host the inaugural workshop of the Indian Social Policy Association entitled “Comparative and International Social Policy Theories & Methods: Lessons for Research and Practice in India”, 24 – 25 March 2014. The workshop is jointly organised by the Development Studies Association in UK, the Social Policy Association, also in UK, and the O.P. Jindal Global University in India.
This training workshop will bring together academics, practitioners and government officials who are working on emerging social policy issues in India and the United Kingdom. Its primary aim is to provide participants with an answer to the question ‘What is Social Policy?’ by providing an overview of its key theoretical and methodological approaches. In particular, the workshop aims to discuss the relevance and applicability of social policy research across the Social Science disciplines to lower middle income economies – specifically India.
The training workshop will form the inaugural event of the newly constituted Indian Social Policy Association, which aims to facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration in teaching and research between India and the United Kingdom as well as exchanges between the academe, policy and practice within and across both of these countries. 
Applications is now open for those interested in joining the workshop. More information. 

• Manchester and South AsianArts theme for 2014 SAAG Symposium

The 2014 Annual Symposium of the UK based South Asian Arts Group (SAAG) will be held at the Manchester School of Art on Friday 28 March. It is being hosted by Manchester Institute for Research and Innovation in Art and Design (MIRIAD) that Manchester School of Art is a part of at Manchester Metropolitan University. The theme of the meeting is ”Manchester and South Asian Arts”, and there will also be the opportunity to find out more about SAAG and meet with speakers and delegates. Alnoor Mitha and Jeremy Theophilus, in collaboration with the SAAG organizing group and members of MIRIAD, have put together a rich programme of talks and discussion opportunities. If you would like to reserve a place, you need to register before 20th March. See the attached poster for further details.
The South Asian Arts Group (SAAG) is an informal network of academics, curators, artists and arts professionals, who share an interest in the arts and visual/material cultures of South Asia and the diaspora. SAAG provides a space for interaction, conversation and exchange for people interested in South Asian arts in the UK. 

• 28th BASAS Annual Conference to be held in London

The British Association for South Asian Studies (BASAS) holds its 28th Annual Conference at the Royal Holloway, University of London, 2–4 April 2014. This year's conference promises to be an engaging and friendly environment for rigorous academic debate with delegates attending from at least two dozen different British universities; as well as from universities in Australia, Bangladesh, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Russia, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, and the USA. Themed 'South Asia and its wider worlds', the conference aims to address the diverse ways in which trends and developments in South Asia interact with the wider context in which the region is located, whether in the past, present or even the future. Proposals for panels as well as independent papers that address the conference theme are invited. The deadline for conference registration deadline is on the 15 March 2014. You must be a BASAS member in order to register for the conference. More information.

• Princeton University South Asia Workshop on Cultures – Past and Present

Princeton University in the US is organising its Early Career South Asian Studies Workshop 2014 on 11–12 April  2014. The chosen theme for the workshop is Cultures – Past and Present. The concept of “culture” has emerged as the mainstay of scholarship in early modern and modern South Asian studies in the last few decades. From Louis Dumont’s Homo Hierarchicus to Partha Chatterjee’s “inner” and “outer” domains of colonial society, debates over the merits of “culture” as a field of analysis have been central to these studies. More recently, some concepts of culture have enabled linguistic and religious parochialism, but others have become a rallying point for the opposition of the hegemony of social structures.  While some of these applications of the culture-concept have been discredited, many others are still being intensely debated. In the context of the past scholarship and ongoing debates and controversies, this workshop aims to bring together participants from multiple disciplines and facilitate an intellectual exchange to review the career of “culture” in South Asian Studies, assess its importance today and engage in insightful prognostications of its future. Princeton is now accepting papers to be presented at the workshop. More information about the workshop and call for papers

• SAARC conference on Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Sustainable Development

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) holds a Regional Conference on ‘Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Sustainable Development (CHTSD) in South Asia’ in Colobo, Sri Lanka, 28–29 April 2014. It will be a brainstorming session to discuss the key issues and moot research questions and also to identify themes and subthemes that merit independent and in-depth research. Academics and experts on the subject are invited for the Conference to present papers on a relevant theme. They include Tourism Management at the Cultural Heritage Sites in South Asia; Development of Cultural Heritage Tourism Products (CTP); New Avenues for Public-Private Partnership (PPP) for promoting Cultural Heritage Tourism: Harnessing Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Potential; Cultural Heritage Tourism as a Tool for Poverty Alleviation; and Urban and Local Regeneration of Cultural Heritage Sites through Tourism. A one day post-conference tour will be organized on 30 April 2014 to Anuradhapura and Sigiriya, for all registered delegates of the Conference. Last date for nominating participants is Tuesday 18 March 2014. More information.

• Toronto conference on study of Pakistan beyond tremors & terror

Three Canadian universities – University of Toronto, Ryerson University and York University – all in Toronto, jointly hold a conference on the theme ”Pakistan beyond tremors and terror: critical engagements with political, economic and cultural change” on 29 – 30 May 2014. 
As host to a daily onslaught of bomb-blasts, ”honour killings”, and ”mob” violence, Pakistan regularly populates the pages of the international mainstream press. But these popular journalistic accounts often leave the impression that the country is embroiled in a spate of irrationality, violence and Islamic fundamentalism. Alternatively, liberal Pakistanis, if they make an appearance in the drama, are celebrated as carriers of the torch of progress, challenging the dominance of religious conservatism with their unrivalled "toleration", their capitalist ”development”, and their support for the Pakistani state's military offensives and the broader ”War on Terror”. This is the narrative typically delivered to the world. Much of recent scholarly work on Pakistan too has been guilty of reproducing a crude and overly-narrow analysis of the country and its people, an analysis (if one could call it that) which seems to be more committed to promoting US foreign policy objectives than to stimulating any serious academic inquiry. The purpose of this conference is to challenge these views and bring together scholars and students whose research moves beyond these prevailing ways to a more complex understanding of Pakistan and its people. More information available on Pakistan Conference website. 

• Kolkata Conference on Information Technology

Fourth International Conference on Advances in Information Technology and Mobile Communication – AIM 2014, will be held during 6 - 7 June, 2014 in Kolkata, India.
AIM2014 aims to bring together innovative academics and industrial experts in the field of Computer Science, Information Technology, Computational Engineering, Communication and Network to a common forum. The AIM conference is organsied by the Association of Computer Electronics and Electrical Engineers (ACEEE) and sponsored by the Indian Society for Technical Education (ISTE). Prospective authors are invited to submit full (original) research papers; which are not submitted or published or under consideration anywhere in other conferences or journals; in electronic (PDF only) format through the Easy Chair Conference Management System website or via email to More information.

• London conference in honour of Simon Digby and his pre-Mughal India research

The  SOAS South Asia Institute (SSAI) at the School of Oriental and African Studies,  University of London, organises an international conference to honour and celebrate the life, work, and interests of the late Simon Everard Digby 9–11 June 2014. It is co-organised by the Simon Digby Memorial Charity. Venue: Kamran DJAM Lecture Theatre (Formerly G2), SOAS, Russell Square College, London. 
Digby was an English oriental scholar, translator, writer and collector who was awarded the Burton Medal of the Royal Asiatic Society. He was considered to be the foremost British scholar of pre-Mughal India. This conference celebrates his vast and pioneering scholarship by focusing on the areas and materials he explored – coins, paintings, manuscripts another material objects, art history, Sufism, language and literary history, and travel. The conference brings together some of the most renowned scholars of pre-modern South Asia who knew Simon Digby personally as well as younger scholars who have been influenced by his path-breaking work. Papers will address the various aspects of his work and will discuss and apply “Simon’s method”, a unique mix of lapidary attention to objects and ideas with an intense awareness of the larger historical patterns that produced them and influenced their subsequent use.  The conference is now open for registerations. More information. 

• London conference on South Asian Screen Cultures in the 21st century

University of Westminster in London will hold a conference entitled “Moving On: South Asian Screen Cultures in a Broader Frame“ 12–14 June 2014. Venue: University of Westminster, 35 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5LS. 
This interdisciplinary conference seeks to explore complex and nuanced screen archaeologies in which the past, the present and the future come together to pose new questions for South Asian Screen Studies in the 21st Century.
Indian Cinema has just celebrated the centenary of the release of Dadasaheb Phalkes Raja Harishchandra. It is now time to assess the ever expanding film archive and its new and rapidly proliferating manifestations.
The conference will particularly focus on the processes of dispersal, fragmentation and regeneration. These could pertain to screen technologies, film form, media artefacts, extra-filmic ephemera, sound objects, personnel, formal and informal markets, and the multilayered routes of screen travel. It is our hope that this conference can offer a venue to think about alternative genealogies, archaeologies, and interconnected archives. "Moving on" is fuelled by a desire to consider the moving image in the broadest context of region and time span. While centred on South Asia, the conference will also be focused on not limiting to screen objects produced in/by/for South Asians. Rather they hope also to engage with transnational and transcultural journeys, institutions and cultural forms. Call for papers to be presented at the conference is open until 26 March 2014. More information.

• Peshawar conference on Change in the Pak-Afghan Borderland

The Department of Political Science at University of Peshawar, Pakistan, and the Hanns Seidel Foundation in Germany jointly organise a conference entiled ‘Dynamics of Change in the Pak-Afghan Borderland: An interplay of Past Legacies, Present Realities and Future Scenarios,’ to be held on June 25-26, 2014 at the Bara Gali Summer Campus of the University of Peshawar, 95 km from Islamabad (between Murree and Abottabad). The organisers invite papers on issues such as Governance Reforms and change in the Pak-Afghan Borderland; Provincial autonomy, devolution and bottom up processes of change; Ethno-nationalism in the region; Militancy, religious extremism and change; and Gender and transformation in the region. Full information about the conference
This is the third in a series of international conferences, the previous were held in November 2011 in Peshawar, June  2013 at Bara Gali. The aim behind these conferences is to probe more deeply processes of change in the Pak-Afghan region. The conference proceedings can be accessed at the Internet. Go for them.

• Kuala Lumpur workshop on Women’s Migration From and Across Asia for Work

An International Workshop entitled ”Women’s Migration From and Across Asia for Work: Histories, Emotions and Relationships” will be held at University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 8 – 9 August 2014. It is organised by the university’s Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and is part of an International Workshop series on the Emotions of Migration. The workshop understands the emotions experienced in the migration process to be a diverse and complex range of feelings that are expressed and managed in different ways. It focuses on historical, qualitative and ethnographic research which priorities women’s voices, experiences and emotions within the migration process. It will bring together academic and action-based researchers to share the lived experiences of women’s emotional journeys as migrant workers, and add to a growing knowledge base on women’s migrant work through and within South and Southeast Asia. Abstracts should be submitted by 31 March 2014. More information

• Sri Lanka conference on Harnessing Knowledge and Harmonizing Diversities

The 2014 International Conference on Multidisciplinary Approaches (ICMA) will be held at University of Sri Jayewardenepura in Nugegoda, Sri Lanka, 13–14 August 2014. The theme for the ICMA 2014 will be ”Harnessing Knowledge and Harmonizing Diversities”, focusing on five major areas; Health Sciences, Natural Sciences, Management & Finances, Humanities & Social Sciences, Modern Technology & Applications. There will be a special plenary session on chronic Kidney disease with unknown etiology (CKDu) – a significant health issue both nationally and globally. 
There will be a keynote speech on "Harnessing Knowledge and Harmonizing Diversities through multidisciplinary approaches” by Prof Mohan Munasinghe who shred Nobel prize for peace in 2007 followed by the guest lecturers of invited speakers for each session. High quality research findings from eminent international and national researchers and professionals are invited. Abstracts will be published in conference proceedings and outstanding findings will be considered for publishing as full length papers in the Journal of Multidisciplinary Studies published by the Faculty of Graduate Studies, University of Sri Jayewardenepura. The best ICMA oral presentation and poster presentation from each session will receive ICMA certificate and an award. More information

• Toronto workshop on Young People's Migration Within and Throughout Asia

York Centre for Asian Research at University in Toronto organises a workshop entitled ”Young People's Migration Within and Throughout Asia” on 19–20 August 2014. It is actually a second workshop in an International Workshop Series with the theme ”The Emotions of Migration”. Venue: York Centre for Asian Research and the Children’s Studies Program (Department of Humanities) York University, Toronto, Canada.
For the Toronto worskhop, the organisers call for empirical research papers – historical and contemporary – on children and young people's emotional experiences of migration within and throughout Asia. Papers should focus on mixed feelings of (but not limited to) elation, loneliness, hope, frustration, confusion, relief, fear, freedom and disappointment in the migration process. There is a preference for participant-centred research in South and Southeast Asia prioritizing the following themes:
1. Migration for work and marriage in a historical context (especially in plantations and estates)
2. Contemporary experiences of moving for work, marriage and school – managing mixed feelings
3. Left Behind – adjusting to absence and creating and maintaining relationships
Paper abstracts should be submitted by 4 April 2014. More information.

• New Zeeland conference on Un-thinking Asian Migrations

The University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, organises a conference entitled ”Un-thinking Asian Migrations: Spaces of flows and intersections” on 25–26 August 2014. The Asian Migrations Research theme is a collective of scholars working in Asian Studies at the University of Otago. They focus on movements of peoples and ideas – past and present – in East, South, and South-East Asia and into the Pacific. It engages with the fields of diaspora, intercultural, global, and transnational studies, which have grown over the last twenty years to become key frameworks for understanding culture beyond the boundaries of one nation. This symposium sets out to question and challenge current Asian migration studies. The keynote speakers are Associate Professor Eric C. Thompson (Chair of Graduate Studies, Department of Sociology, National University of Singapore) and Professor D. Parthasarathy (Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay). Abstracts should be submitted before 30 April 2014. More information.

• London Symposium on South Asian Youth Cultures and Fashion

London College of Fashion is holding a conference entitled “Contemporary South Asian Youth Cultures and Fashion Symposium“ at London University of the Arts from 25 - 26 September, 2014. The conference is organised by Lipi Begum, lecturer at London College of Fashion and Rohit K Dasgupta, doctoral candidate and associate lecturer at London College of Communication. The conference is supported by London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London.
Dynamic growth and an expanding middle class are making South Asian (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) consumers among the most confident in the world. A large part of this includes the increasing consumption of fashion and related products amongst the youth. Whilst there has been some study of South Asian fashion and dressing cultures within history, anthropology, cinema and diaspora; there has been little work that has looked at the transnational implication of contemporary changing cultural and economic environments on dressing cultures on the youth in South Asia and its diasporas. Dress in India and more largely South Asia is used to instigate change, question national identities and assert power. In this international interdisciplinary symposium the organisers are aiming to extend and question the role of clothing cultures within the changing transnational discourse of consumerism, sexuality, faith, politics and media technology within the youth in South Asia and the diasporas. Application for paper submissions and creative presentations from interdisciplinary perspectives is open until 30 March 2014. More information. 

• Japanese Association for South Asian Studies invites to 27th Annual Conference

The Japanese Association for South Asian Studies (JASAS) invites participants to its 27th Annual Conference, to be held at Ito Bunka University, Higashimatsuyama Campus in Saitama-ken on 27 – 28 September 2014. Deadline for panel proposals and Individual paper proposals is 31 March 2014. The proposals from abroad are open to non-members of JASAS. No registration fee is required. More information to be provided by the Takako Inoue at JASAS Annual Conference Office.
JASAS was founded in 1988. As a nation-wide academic body, JASAS holds annual sessions and publishes Journal of the Japanese Association for South Asian Studies (JJASAS) (from 1989) and International Journal of South Asian Studies (IJSAS) (from 2008). JASAS helps maintain scholarly communication among its members, as well as contacts between Japanese researchers and research organizations and their foreign counterparts. 

• 43rd Annual Madison Conference focuses on Improvising South Asia

MadisonThe 43rd Annual Madison Conference on South Asia is held 16–19 October 2014. The conference, that is sponsored by the Center for South Asia at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, attracts over 650 scholars and specialists on South Asia, who travel from countries all over the world and much of the United States. It is a great venue for intellectual, professional, and social exchange. Panels, roundtables, and individual papers on all topics pertaining to South Asian studies are welcome.
This year a plenary session will be organized around the theme of ”Improvising South Asia”. The organisers especially welcome panels that consider this theme in relation to a wide range of settings, whether it be music and theatre, architecture and design, or economic and cultural life.  The conference features nearly 100 academic panels and roundtables, as well as association meetings and special events ranging from performances to film screenings. Deadline for submitting panel suggestions is 1 April 2014. Venue: Madison Concourse Hotel, 1 West Dayton St., Madison, Wisconsin, USA. More information

• Pune conference to celebrate 900th anniversary of Indian Mathematician

The Indian Society for History of Mathematics (ISHM) will be organizing an International conference at Pune in India 27 – 30 November 2014. The conference is hosted jointly by three institutions, the Departments of Mathematics of the University of Pune, the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Pune, and the Bhaskaracharya Institute of Mathematics, Pune.
The event will commemorate the 900th anniversary of great ancient Indian mathematician Bhaskaracharya (1114 – 1185 AD). The theme will be broad-based, covering a broad range of topics in history of mathematics of various cultures from the world. There will also be a session dedicated to the works of Bhaskaracharya. The organisers are accepting paper for conference. More information.

• Other conferences connected to South Asian studies all over the World
See SASNET’s page,

Business and Politics

• Swedish Radio's South Asia correspondent killed in Afghanistan

On 11th March 2014, Swedish Radio's South Asia correspondent, Nils Horner, was killed in Afghanistan. He was shot dead in broad daylight on a Kabul street, close to a Lebanese restaurant where a bomb went off in January earlier this year. He was preparing to do interviews at the time, ahead of the upcoming elections in Afghanistan. Nils Horner had worked in the region for many years. He was 51 years old. He had reported from Afghanistan in 2001 when the Taliban were forced from power, during the USA's entry into Baghdad in 2003, from Thailand following the Tsunami in 2004, and from Japan after the tsunami and ensuing Fukushima nuclear plant disaster in 2011.
The shooting has already been described as the one of the worst days in the Swedish Radio (SR) corporation`s history. SR is currently the only Swedish media company that has correspondents covering Afghanistan, and while it is still deemed an unsafe environment, Finn Isaksson, head of personal security at Swedish Radio, says Horner himself had not reported any suspicious or threatening activity. Read more.

• Information about South Asia related business and politics in Sweden
See SASNET's page,

South Asia related culture in Scandinavia

• Ninth Annual Day celebration for Saraswathy Kalakendra in Huddinge

Saraswathy Kalakendra Institution of Fine Arts in Huddinge invites for its ninth Annual Day celebration on Saturday 19 April 2014 from 16.00The Bharata Natyam dance school was started in 2004 by Usha Balasundaram, originally from Kerala and trained at the famous dance institution Kalakshetra College of Fine Arts in Chennai, India. Performances have been frequent during the past years in the Stockholm region, most recently for example at functions organised by the Hindu temple Association in Stockholm, by Karolinska Institutet, and the Indo-Swedish Association.
This year's program will feature traditional and folk dances from various Indian states. A dance drama performance will in addition present stories related the Indian culture. The programme will finish with Bollywood dance and possibility to try Indian food. Venue: Saraswathy Kalakendra Institution of Fine Arts, Gymnasietorget 1, Huddinge. More information on Saraswathy Kalakendra Institution of Fine Arts and the Annual day celebration.

• Shantala Subramanyam on Swedish concert tour

During the period 22 February – 17 March 2014, South Indian Carnatic Bamboo Flute artist Shantala Subramanyam and her co-musicians Akkarai S Sornalatha on Violin, and Jayachandra Rao on Mridangam, are touring Sweden, performing at a large number of concerts from Luleå in the north to Skurup in the south. They also perform in Gothenburg, Uppsala, Enköping, Stockholm (at Stallet on 10th March), Oskarshamn, and Lund (at Vita huset, Uardavägen, on 16th March). The Swedish programme also includes a music workshop at Unniversity of Gothenburg on Thursday 13th March. See the full tour programme.
More information about Shantala Subramanyam.

Poster for the Lund concert on Sunday 16t March.

• Rabindranath Tagore programme in Stockholm

Arbetarnas Bildningsförbund (ABF) in Stockholm organises a cultural programme focusing on the 100th anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore’s Nobel Prize on Saturday 29 March 2014, at 13.00. The programme will be held in Swedish, and feature lectures by Tagore specialists Olavi Hemmilä and Per Olov Henricsson, and music by trained rabindrasangheet singer Bubu Munshi-Eklund from Lund. Vox Pacis Ensemble and its artistic director Gunilla Nordlund will also take part in the programme, and a concluding dicussion session will be moderated by Hema Lehocky. More information.

• Bhutanese film festival in Denmark

From the 27th February to 8th March 2014 the Bhutanese film festival “New Movies from Bhutan – cinematic views on a magical culture” was held in Denmark. During this period cinemas across the country new and inspiring movies from Bhutan were shown. Four of Bhutan’s leading filmmakers visited Denmark during the festival and debates on Bhutanese film and development in Bhutan were arranged in connection to the festival. One of the filmmakers visiting Denmark was Kesang Dorjee – the woman behind the documentaries on women in politics; “Yes Madam Prime Minister” and “Bhutan Women Forward”, which are both supported by the Danish Institute for Parties and Democracy (DIPD). The film festival was organized by the The Friendship Association Denmark – Bhutan in collaboration with The Cinematheque, Center for Culture and Development (CKU), Bhutan Film Association and DIPD. More information.

• Miss India Worldwide Scandinavia 2014 Contest in Stockholm

Miss India Worldwide Scandinavia 2014 Contest was held in Stockholm on Satuday 1 March 2014, at 18.00. Venue: Berwaldhallen, Stockholm. Shima Singh Mann was selected to be Miss India Sweden 2014. Judges were invited from different countries. The panel consisted of Ms Elli Avram who is a Swedish lady but is also a Bollywood actress, Miss Nisha Haroon who was crowned as Miss Norway 2013, the film director Mr. Harwani, Ms. Harmeet Kaur crowned as Mrs. Sweden 2013, and Ms. Nehal Bhogaita who was crowned as Miss India Worldwide 2013.
In the audience were found the Chairman & Founder of Miss India Worldwide, Dharmatma Saran, Scandinavia's National Director Preeti Singh, and Sri Lankan Ambassador Oshadhi Alahapperuma. There were also the other Miss India Scandinavia Winners:
Miss India Finland – Himani Sharma; Miss India Norway – Sonia Singh; and Miss India Denmark – Laxmi Bhandari.
The winner of Miss India Scandinavia competition will go on to participate in Miss India Worldwide in New Zealand as a representative of Sweden. More information.

• Information about South Asia related culture in Sweden/ Scandinavia
See SASNET’s page,

New and updated items on SASNET web site

• Two-year project behind volume on Indian Polity, Economy and International Relations

India in Contemporary World: Polity, Economy and International Relations (Routledge, New York, London, New Delhi, 2014), edited by Jakub Zajączkowski, Jivanta Schöttli, and Manish Thapa, is the result of two years of cooperation between researchers from India and the European Union (EU), made possible thanks to a prestigious grant (Centre for Contemporary India Research and Studies) given to the Institute of International Relations, University of Warsaw, Poland in 2009 by the EU, amounting to EUR 270,000 and aimed at promoting research on present-day India.
Jakub Zajaczkowski is Assistant Professor at the Institute of International Relations, and Chairperson of the Centre for Contemporary India Research and Studies, University of Warsaw. Jivanta Schöttli is Lecturer at the Department of Political Science, South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University, Germany. Manish Thapa is Assistant Professor at the Department of Conflict, Peace and Development Studies, Tribhuvan University, Nepal, and visiting faculty at the Institute of International Relations, University of Warsaw.
India in the Contemporary World: Polity, Economy and International Relations marks a culminating point for the consortium of European and Indian scholars, who had the opportunity to meet and get to know each other. In the book there are 19 papers of scholars from India and EU, including Subrata K. Mitra, Jyotirmaya Tripathy, Sudarsan Padmanabhan, Shantanu Chakrabarti, and Johannes Dragsbaek Schmidt. Read more.

• Swedish departments where research on South Asia is going on

This month there were 1 new department added to SASNET's list:

         ‡ Spiber Technologies AB, Uppsala,

Constantly added to the list of research environments at Swedish universities, presented by SASNET. The full list now includes more than 300 departments, with detailed descriptions of the South Asia related research and education taking place! See the full list of departments here:

• Useful travelling information

Look at our Travel Advice page. Updated travel advises from the The British Foreign & Commonwealth Office about safety aspects on travelling to the countries of South Asia.

Best regards

Lars Eklund
Hawwa Lubna
Deputy Director in charge of Communication Assistant Communications Officer

SASNET/Swedish South Asian Studies Network

SASNET is a national network for research, education, and information about South Asia and is based at Lund University. Its aim is to promote a dynamic networking process in which Swedish researchers cooperate with their counterparts in South Asia and around the globe.
The SASNET network is open to all branches of the natural and social sciences. Priority is given to interdisciplinary cooperation across faculties, and more particularly to institutions in the Nordic countries and South Asia. SASNET believes that South Asian studies will be most fruitfully pursued as a cooperative endeavour among researchers in different institutions who have a solid base in their mother disciplines.
The network is financed by Lund University.

Postal address: SASNET – Swedish South Asian Studies Network, Box 114, SE-221 00 Lund, Sweden 
Visiting address: Paradisgatan 5 G (first floor, room no. 201), in the premises of the Department of Sociology, Lund University.
Phone: + 46 46 222 73 40 
Web site:

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