The Asian Studies Center responsibility is defined by the goals articulated in the Plan for Pitt. As an independent unit within the University Center for International Studies, our primary focus is on the development of programs and projects that place Asia at the center of the university’s goal to “embrace the world” through research and teaching. We are committed to producing global citizens by working with faculty and students to bridge across boundaries.
In keeping with the Plan for Pitt and to facilitate cross-disciplinary, multi-unit collaboration, the Asian Studies Center has embarked on a Global Asia initiative. This not only reflects the place of Asia in world history, and the importance of Japan, Korea and Taiwan in 20thcentury globalization, but dramatic, ongoing changes in Central and Southeast Asia and the profound significance of India and China in defining the trajectory of developments all over the world. Although our programing continues to focus on regional aspects of language and culture, critical thinking about Asia as a whole must extend beyond national boundaries.
Over one hundred faculty, representing the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, GSPIA, Katz, Swanson, Nursing, Law, and Education, as well as faculty from our branch campuses, are affiliated with the Asian Studies Center. We seek to support faculty initiatives that reflect regional, disciplinary, and professional specialization within the framework of our focus on Global Asia.
Historically, the Center has encouraged faculty collaboration through regional councils, now increased in number to include China, Japan, Korea, South Asia and Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Each of the five councils is inclusive with a global orientation toward research and collaboration. Each council is organized by and for groups of faculty with shared interests. The Asian Studies Center depends on the councils for advice on programming, the award of funding to grant applicants and on planning and budget administration. Along with the director, associate director and the UCIS director of administration, the five council chairs serve on the Asian Studies Center planning and budget committee. In accordance with established guidelines, the new ASC-PBC will advise the director in preparing annual budgets, meeting twice a year, once in the fall and once in the spring term.