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Category : South Asia in the News


Tina Liu has Witnessed the Growing Threat of Fires Firsthand. Now She’s Studying Their Impacts.

Tina Liu has Witnessed the Growing Threat of Fires Firsthand. Now She’s Studying Their Impacts.

Tianjia (Tina) Liu joined the Mittal Institute as a Graduate Student Associate in the 2021-2022 academic year and is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard University. Tina’s research focuses on using satellite data and atmospheric modeling to quantify the impacts of fires on air quality and public health in India, Indonesia, and globally. She has recently published 2 papers with another in review on the topic of crop residue burning and the impact on air quality degradation. Prior to joining the Mittal Institute, Tina received her B.A. in Environmental Science from Columbia University, and her research has primarily been focused on fires and air quality since her undergraduate days.

On Crisis and Consequences in Pakistan: Yaqoob Bangash Previews May 5 Panel

On Crisis and Consequences in Pakistan: Yaqoob Bangash Previews May 5 Panel

Dr. Yaqoob Khan Bangash is a historian of Modern South Asia and a current Fulbright Fellow at the Mittal Institute. His current research interests lie in the emergence of Pakistan as a post-colonial state, with broader interests in decolonisation, modern state formation, formation of identities, and the emergence of ethnic and identity based conflicts. He also regularly writes for The News, Daily Times, The Express Tribune and other newsmedia. He spoke with the Mittal Institute about the current political crisis in Pakistan, and explored what implications it might have for the larger world.

Bhutan and the “Inbetween”: The Work of Dr. Nitasha Kaul

Bhutan and the “Inbetween”: The Work of Dr. Nitasha Kaul

Nitasha Kaul, a Kashmiri novelist, multidisciplinary academic, poet, economist, and artist who is based in London, headlines the April 7 talk, ‘Inbetween’ India and China: Bhutan’s International Relations. The talk, sponsored by the Mittal Institute, Asia Center and Fairbank Center, traces Bhutan’s history as a Himalayan country sharing borders with India and China, and its foreign policy trajectory. Dr. Kaul, who is also an Associate Professor (Reader) in Politics and International Relations at the University of Westminster, spoke to the Mittal Institute ahead of the talk about her work.

Decarbonizing India’s Energy Economy: A Conversation with Professor Michael B. McElroy

Decarbonizing India’s Energy Economy: A Conversation with Professor Michael B. McElroy

Professor Michael B. McElroy, Gilbert Butler Professor of Environmental Studies at Harvard University and Chair of the Harvard-China Project on Energy, Economy and Environment, leads a research group studying how India might forge a path towards a decarbonized energy system. He will present his thoughts at the upcoming March 30 event, “Decarbonizing India’s Energy Economy,” hosted by the Harvard-China Project and LMSAI. The Mittal Institute sat down with Professor McElroy to learn more about his research and the future energy and climate outlook of India.

Post Pandemic: Driving Inclusive Growth in Asia (Videos)

Post Pandemic: Driving Inclusive Growth in Asia (Videos)

This semester, the three-part series “Post Pandemic: Driving Inclusive Growth in Asia,” focused on the unique challenges faced by many Asian countries recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic. Hosted by the Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research, Harvard University’s Center for International Development, and Harvard University’s Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute, the series explored the following topics: Education in Asia (January 19); Healthcare in Asia (February 16); Economics and Social Policy Driving Social Cohesion in Asia (March 16)

Fleeing Afghanistan: Fara Abbas on Starting Over

Fleeing Afghanistan: Fara Abbas on Starting Over

Fara Abbas, a Fellow with the Negotiation Task Force, based at Harvard’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, is a specialist on Afghan affairs with over 10 years of in-country experience on security, peace, and development. She fled Afghanistan in August after the Taliban takeover, and a stipend by a number of Harvard entities – including the Mittal Institute – is supporting her year-long Fellowship at Harvard.

‘Indian Sex Life’: Durba Mitra on Strict Social Norms

‘Indian Sex Life’: Durba Mitra on Strict Social Norms

Durba Mitra, Carol K. Pforzheimer Assistant Professor at the Radcliffe Institute and Assistant Professor of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality has been awarded the Bernard S. Cohn Book Prize by the Association for Asian Studies for her book, Indian Sex Life: Sexuality and the Colonial Origins of Modern Social Thought. This prize honors “outstanding and innovative scholarship across discipline and country of specialization for a first single-authored monograph on South Asia.” Indian Sex Life, which demonstrates how ideas of deviant female sexuality became foundational to modern social thought, also received an honorable mention for the J. Willard Hurst Book Prize from the Law & Society Association.

The Fractured Himalaya: An Interview with Nirupama Rao on the Sino-Indian War

The Fractured Himalaya: An Interview with Nirupama Rao on the Sino-Indian War

Nirupama Rao, a former Foreign Secretary of India, unknots this complex saga of the early years of the India-China relationship in her new book, The Fractured Himalaya. As a diplomat-practitioner, Rao’s telling is based not only on archival material from India, China, Britain and the United States, but also on a deep personal knowledge of China, where she served as India’s Ambassador. She shared her new book with the Mittal Institute ahead of her upcoming February 17 Borders in Modern Asia Seminar Series talk, “The Fractured Himalaya.”

Arvid Bell Previews Oct 15 Talk: Afghanistan’s Next Transition

Arvid Bell Previews Oct 15 Talk: Afghanistan’s Next Transition

On Friday, October 15, the Mittal Institute and the Negotiation Task Force present “Afghanistan’s Next Transition: How we got here, and what comes next,” a focus on the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. Discussants will explore the lead up to the collapse of the Afghan government, and what the new Taliban regime means for the future of the country and its people. Arvid Bell spoke with the Mittal Institute about his work, and what we can expect the panelists to cover at the October 15 event. Arvid is a scholar and entrepreneur who specializes in complex conflict analysis, negotiation strategy, and international security. He is lecturer on Government at Harvard University, Director of the Negotiation Task Force at the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, and Partner at Negotiation Design & Strategy (NDS), a training, advisory, and research development group.