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20 Years IIAS Special Issue

The Focus | Sustainable Humanosphere Studies: Towards new models of socio-economic development. Guest Editor Mario Lopez presents multidisciplinary research from scholars who are engaged in sustainability studies in Southeast Asia. This issue’s contributions to the Focus section emphasize the important collaborations that are currently taking place between disciplines to address complex socio-economic transformations in the region.

Traditional Indian Medicine

Maarten Bode presents articles from ten scholars on Traditional Indian Medicine. Contributions to this issues’ Focus section consider the contemporary relevance of TIM, its integration into India’s public health system and its role in the west as a form of ‘complementary and alternative medicine’. They explore current and related topics such as providers of Indian medicine, their practices and status, consequences of the commercialisation of Indian medicine, the role of the state, and positivist research.

The ongoing story of Macao

Ordained by poet W. H. Auden in the 1930s as a city where “nothing serious could ever happen”, and whose citizens were described only thirty years ago as “among the most unrepresented, forgotten people in Asia”, Macao is now experiencing a remarkable resurgence. In this edition of the Focus, guest editor Tim Simpson outlines the Macao of yesterday, today and the future.

New Designs for Asia

Asia's remarkable economic and political growth has led some to believe that future historians will be calling the twenty-first century the 'Asian Century'. One of the most important factors fuelling growth is the region's rapid urbanization. Urban Studies and Architecture are important disciplines for anyone interested in trying to pragmatically direct this growth, and help to improve people's lives. In the focus section of this issue , guest editors Gregory Bracken and Bart Kuijpers present 'New Designs for Asia' - student work from the Architecture Faculty, TU Delft, the Netherlands.

Chinese and EU Energy Security

The energy security challenge of the 21st century

China and the European Union have common vulnerabilities and interests in the areas of energy, environmental protection, and sustainability. In this edition of the Focus, Guest editors Mehdi P. Amineh and Yang Guang ask how they should proceed with regards to mutual cooperation

Swiss photographic collections on Asia

When you understand where you come from and the environment around you, you can take the future into your hands and contribute to a better destiny. Guest editors Paul Bucherer-Dietschi and Anke Schürer-Ries introduce the photographic collections on Asia in Swiss archives, comment on their significance to research and cultural heritage, and reflect on the technical and methodological aspects of building and maintaining such collections.

Africa and the Chinese way

China is both a global power and a developing country – clearly still finding its way in the international system. Guest editor, Frans-Paul van der Putten, focuses on China’s relations with the African continent and how they diff er from those of other influential actors. The Focus articles identify specific elements of the Chinese way of dealing with political-economic diversity in the developing world; elements which allow China to clearly distinguish itself from the West.

Postcolonial dialogues

Guest editor Michiel Baas offers a selection of examples of the confusing image painted by postcolonial dialogues, in which certain colonial pasts are celebrated, yet simultaneously recognised for the atrocities committed. The discussion brings us to the question of the post in postcolonial, and thus to the present day, because even though structures of inequality were put in place during colonial days, they often see their perpetuation and/or reinvention for many years after Independence.

Food Security and Land Grabbing

Local crop or foreign commodity? Guest editor Annelies Zoomers considers the food security debate in Asia, in the context of domestic and international land acquisitions intended to meet increasing demands for both food and (bio)energy. Various strategies, such as offshore farming, the creation of agro-hubs, and foreign investors, aim to increase food security, yet often have an adverse impact on local communities and their ecosystems.

Cultural Heritage

“Cultural heritage projects mediate what we behold, and what we are told, of the past,” states guest editor Imran bin Tajudeen. “They involve representations and narrations of, and interventions on, aspects of the histories of specifically-defined communities within contemporary frames of reference and signification.”


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