Events

Upcoming SAI Events

Book Talk: The Future Is Asian

START
Tue, Feb 19, 2019 at 04:15pm

END
Tue, Feb 19, 2019 at 06:00pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S250
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge MA

Parag Khanna, Managing Partner of FutureMap, will discuss his new book entitled “The Future Is Asian,” in a talk chaired by Tarun Khanna, Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at Harvard Business School and Director of The Mittal Institute. 
 
This event is co-sponsored with the Harvard University Asia Center.
 
About the book:
 
“The ‘Asian Century‘ is even bigger than you think. Far greater than just China, the new Asian system taking shape is a multi-civilizational order spanning Saudi Arabia to Japan, and Russia to Australia—linking five billion people through trade, finance and infrastructure networks that together represent 40 percent of global GDP. From investment portfolios and trade wars to Hollywood movies and holiday travels, no aspect of life is immune from Asianization.
 
“Dr. Parag Khanna’s latest book, “The Future Is Asian,” presents this irrepressible global Asianization through detailed analysis, data and maps of Asia’s major markets and their combined impact on global economy, society and governance. With his trademark conceptual clarity and on-the-ground reportage, Khanna provides essential guidance for executives as they look to hedge their China exposure and capture the next big commercial opportunities across Asia from real estate and retail to finance and technology, and attract Asian capital and talent into their operations at home and abroad. With his intimate knowledge of Asian history and geopolitics, he also paints a compelling vision of a balanced global system of shared responsibilities across America, Europe and Asia.” (Parag Khanna, 2019)
 

Sri Lankan Narrations and Building Schemes by Minnette de Silva

START
Tue, Feb 26, 2019 at 06:00pm

END
Tue, Feb 26, 2019 at 07:30pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S153
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

In her building and writing, architect Minnette de Silva sought to recreate a “felicitous community spirit” across social and cultural differences, as stated in her memoir — a text on the significant multi-family housing project her office undertook. In this event, Anooradha Iyer Siddiqi, Assistant Professor of the Department of Architecture at Columbia University, will perform a critical examination of de Silva’s work. Siddiqi will discuss the claims de Silva sought to incorporate into modern architecture for Ceylon, and her labors as a cultural narrator imagining a heritage at the end of a half-century career.

Dreams of Independence: Vernacular Nationalism Among the Mizos of Northeast India

START
Wed, Feb 27, 2019 at 12:00pm

END
Wed, Feb 27, 2019 at 01:30pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S250
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge MA

Roluahpuia, the Mittal Institute’s Raghunathan Family Fellow, will discuss his research into the relationship between orality and nationalism at two levels through the lens of the Mizo case in northeast India. The first level surrounds the process of creating a vernacular language, involving the reframing and reconstruction of nationalist ideas. The second is the irrepressibility of the oral vernacular against the state’s violent response to the nationalist movement. As a result, the “vernacularization” of nationalist ideas reveals peoples’ agency to construct their own sense and understanding of the nation.

This discussion will be chaired by Sugata Bose, Gardiner Professor of Oceanic History and Affairs in the Department of History at Harvard University.

De Facto Suffrage: A Field Experiment to Improve Women’s Turnout in Pakistan’s General Elections

START
Fri, Apr 12, 2019 at 02:00pm

END
Fri, Apr 12, 2019

VENUE
CGIS South, S153
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

JOINT SEMINAR ON SOUTH ASIAN POLITICS SERIES

Sarah Khan, Postgraduate Associate, Yale MacMillan Center

Sarah Khan is a postgraduate associate at the Yale MacMillan Center. Her research interests lie at the intersection of gender and comparative politics, with a regional specialization in South Asia. In her work, she explores gender gaps in political preferences, and the barriers to women’s participation and substantive representation in Pakistan. Additionally, she explores questions related to the prevention of violence against women. Her research has been generously supported by grants from the American Institute of Pakistan Studies, the Abdul Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL) Governance Initiative, and the National Science Foundation.

Khan has worked with Ali Cheema, Shandana Mohmand, and Asad Liaqat to research potential pathways to increasing women’s voter registration and turnout in Pakistan, culminating in a paper entitled “Exercising Her Right: Civic and Political Action as Pathways for Increasing Women’s Turnout in Pakistan.” According to the team, “there is a large and persistent gender gap in voter registration and turnout in Pakistan, making for a heavily male-skewed electorate in all levels of Pakistani elections. This has implications both for the quality of democracy, and for women’s substantive representation in politics.”

SAI Events Archive

India’s Daughter: Film Screening and Discussion

START
Fri, Feb 15, 2019 at 04:00pm

END
Fri, Feb 15, 2019 at 06:00pm

In collaboration with the Office of Student Affairs at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute and the Asia Center are co-sponsoring a film screening of “India’s Daughter,” followed by a discussion with Leslee Udwin, Producer and Director. 

“India’s Daughter” is a documentary film based on the story of the brutal gang rape and murder of 23-year-old medical student Jyoti on a moving bus in Delhi in 2012, and the unprecedented protests and riots ignited by the event throughout India. 

The First Battlefield of Western Nuclear Competition: India and Light Water Reactors, 1955–1963

START
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 04:15pm

END
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 06:00pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S250
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge MA

This event is co-hosted by the Asia Center and the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute.

As part of the Asia Center’s Science and Technology Seminar Series, Professor Jayita Sarkar of the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University will discuss nuclear policy in India.

After President Eisenhower’s 1953 “Atoms for Peace” proposal at the United Nations General Assembly, U.S. technological superiority in nuclear technologies became a powerful tool of U.S. foreign policy in the form of civil nuclear assistance. American light water reactor sales were offered to Western Europe, Asia and elsewhere under Section 123 of the 1954 U.S. Atomic Energy Act, thereby, making General Electric, Westinghouse, Babcock & Wilcox and Combustion Engineering the major reactor suppliers in the world. Both the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations were anxious about the impact of an imminent Chinese nuclear weapons test on non-Communist and non-aligned India.

Policymakers in Washington, therefore, decided that the best chance of stalling Indian nuclear proliferation was to offer American power reactors that could help demonstrate the peaceful nuclear capability of the democratic Asian country, in sharp contrast to the military capability of the authoritarian Chinese communist state. Moreover, U.S. reactors would allow U.S. access and oversight on India’s nuclear program through safeguards. This led to the first bilateral reactor agreement between the United States and India leading to U.S. supply of two light water reactors built in Tarapur.

Notwithstanding the Indian Atomic Energy Commission’s opposition to safeguards, its chairman Homi J. Bhabha accepted the US offer because of the generous financial package that it accompanied, thereby, beating the offer of reactors without safeguards from the French Commissariat a l’emergie atomique. After India’s 1974 nuclear explosion, the US supplied light water reactors became tools of U.S. nonproliferation policy toward the Indian Atomic Energy Commission.

Victor Seow, Assistant Professor of the History of Science at Harvard University, will chair this lecture. 

Pakistan’s Youth and the Welfare State: Bilawal Bhutto

START
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 06:00pm

END
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 07:15pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S020 Belfer
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge MA 02138

Join us for a conversation with Bilawal Bhutto, Chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party, on Pakistan’s youth and the welfare state. The conversation will be chaired by Mariam Chughtai, Babar Ali Fellow of the Mittal Institute and Associate Dean and Assistant Professor at LUMS Syed Ahsan Ali and Syed Maratib Ali School of Education, Pakistan.

This event is a collaboration between the Mittal Institute and the Harvard Pakistan Student Group.

Building a Leading Institution for Research and Education: Insights from Harvard University

START
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 06:00pm

END
Mon, Feb 11, 2019 at 08:00pm

This seminar will focus on recent trends within higher education across the world, and how these trends present opportunities and challenges at Harvard University and similar institutions internationally. Professor Mark C. Elliott, Vice Provost for International Affairs and Mark Schwartz Professor of Chinese and Inner Asian History at Harvard University, will share examples of Harvard’s global engagement and how it supports the University’s standing as a world-class institution of research and education.

This seminar is delivered in coordination with Harvard Global Research Support Centre India. 

Refreshments will be served. Please RSVP to mittalinstitutedelhi@fas.harvard.edu. 

 

Crisis and Credibility: The Politics of Ideas in India and Developing Democracies

START
Fri, Feb 8, 2019 at 02:00pm

END
Fri, Feb 8, 2019

VENUE
CGIS South, S450

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA

JOINT SEMINAR ON SOUTH ASIAN POLITICS SERIES

Dr. Bilal A. Baloch is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Center for the Advanced Study of India (CASI), Ronald O. Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics and a Lecturer and Regional Director in South Asia, Middle East and North Africa at The Joseph H. Lauder Institute, Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania.

At CASI, Bilal focuses on the political economy of government behavior in India and other developing democracies. Here, he is revising his doctoral dissertation, Crisis, Credibility, and Corruption: How Ideas and Institutions Shape Government Behavior in India, into a monograph. Bilal has presented academic papers at several international conferences, including the annual meetings of the American Political Science Association and the International Studies Association. In addition to his scholarly publications, his commentary has appeared in a number of outlets, including: The GuardianForeign Policy, The Washington Post, and The Hindu. (Source)

In this lecture, Bilal will go beyond the claim that ideas matter in Indian politics, and will identify which set of ideas, as well as how these ideas shape political behavior during a credibility crisis. He will examine two main credibility crisis moments in contemporary Indian history: that which led to the declaration of an internal emergency and suspension of civil liberties by the ruling Congress government in 1974-1975; and the crisis milieu which led to policy paralysis within the UPA government in 2011-2012. This argument draws upon over 120 interviews with state elites, including prime ministers, cabinet ministers, party leaders, senior bureaucrats, and others.

2019 Summer Grants Open House

START
Wed, Jan 30, 2019 at 04:30pm

END
Wed, Jan 30, 2019 at 05:30pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S250
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge MA

The Mittal Institute’s summer student grant applications for 2019 are now open. If you’re a Harvard undergraduate or graduate student looking to fund your researchinternship, or language study in South Asia this summer, the deadline to apply for a grant is February 8. Come hear about The Mittal Institute’s funding opportunities for Summer 2019.

At our Open House, you can get all of your questions answered about the grants and the application process. Join us to learn more and enjoy some delicious South Asian food. RSVP to our event on Facebook!

Please note: This opportunity is only available to current Harvard students.

Preparing Young Indian Scientists for Life Sciences in the 21st Century

START
Wed, Jan 23, 2019 at 03:00pm

END
Wed, Jan 23, 2019 at 05:00pm

The landscape of life sciences — biology, biomedicine, biotech, and all the rest — is rapidly changing. Today, the amount of data produced is massive, and it increases exponentially with time. New techniques are invented every week as existing techniques get cheaper, though there are new ethical and moral concerns about playing with life processes. Physical and mathematical sciences are increasingly integrated into the life sciences, and exciting new career options are developing as academic positions get more competitive.

Life science research is at the heart of nearly every economic sector. But how do budding life scientists navigate all of these issues, and what can they do to prepare for the future? In this panel discussion, a group of distinguished life scientists and policymakers will discuss some of these issues and offer their guidance.

This program is delivered in coordination with Harvard Global Research Support Centre India

Please RSVP: mittalinstitutedelhi@fas.harvard.edu

Hinduism in Nepal: The Ritual Dimension

START
Sun, Jan 20, 2019 at 10:00am

END
Tue, Jan 22, 2019 at 05:00pm

As part of the Nepal Studies ProgramProfessor Michael Witzel will lead a conference titled “Hinduism in Nepal: The Ritual Dimension.” Ritual has played a major role in Hindu societies, from the Vedas to modern times, and it has been particularly prominent in Nepalese society. It accompanies individuals from morning until night, from birth to death, and it shapes the customs of society throughout the year. This conference will explore some of the rituals, past and present, that are typical for Nepal. Stress is put on the extensive documentation that has been carried out over the past few decades. This conference will focus mainly on fire rituals, including Agnihotra, Homa, and more.

This conference is hosted with the support of the Nepal Leadership Academy (NLA). NLA builds leadership capacity in young change-agents—who are guided by the shared values of collaborating, innovating, and serving and the shared principles of community, justice, and sustainability—to architect effective policy, business, and civic solutions that tackle the most grueling adaptive challenges.

The reception on January 21 is provided by Himalayan Children’s Charities. Through quality education and mentorship, this organization provides the under-served youth of Nepal the pathways to become the next generation of professionals, leaders, and change makers.

Symposium: Trace: Artisanal Intelligence, Material Agency, and Ritual Technology in South Asian Art

START
Sat, Dec 8, 2018 at 04:00pm

END
Sat, Dec 8, 2018

The ‘material turn’ in art history opened new avenues for research with fresh approaches that shift our attention from considering an object as a static thing in an absolute state to putting more emphasis on the process of making and its use and reuse. A chipped area in a miniature painting is no longer an unfortunate loss but a site of excavation for information about material conditions of production and use, while unfinished surface in a stone sculpture provides a laboratory to explore artisans’ hands at work. This symposium brings together scholars whose research embraces methodological interventions and theoretical implications of art history’s material turn in the field of South Asian art and architecture, mostly focusing on the period between 500 CE and 1500CE.  Thematically organized, papers demonstrate how attending to thingness and the process of making helps reveal hitherto invisible connections across time and space.  Going beyond the rubric of material agency, papers also explore the importance of considering somatic intelligence and ritual technology that developed to activate power and sacrality of objects and buildings in Indic religious contexts. Further consideration of ritual knowledge helps situate the trace of time left in matter through artistic mediations in historical and experiential contexts.

Symposium organizer: Jinah Kim, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art & Architecture, Harvard University

Keynote Speaker: Vidya Dehejia, Barbara Stoler Miller Professor of Indian and South Asian Art, Columbia University

Urbanization Seminar: Mrinalini Rajagopalan

START
Mon, Nov 19, 2018 at 06:00pm

END
Mon, Nov 19, 2018 at 07:30pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S153
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

Mrinalini Rajagopalan, Director of Graduate Studies and Associate Professor, Department of History of Art & Architecture, University of Pittsburgh, is a historian of India’s built environment and is particularly interested in the impact of colonialism and nationalism on the architectural, urban, and preservation cultures of modern South Asia. Her first monograph Building Histories: The Archival and Affective Lives of Five Monuments in Modern Delhi (University of Chicago Press, 2016) traces the modern lives of five medieval monuments in India’s capital city, Delhi, and brings attention to their contested histories, unexpected uses, and ideological appropriations by state and non-state actors. This book received the Alice Davis Hitchcock Award from the Society of Architectural Historians in 2018.

She is currently developing two new research projects. The first traces the built works of Begum Samru—a wealthy dowager who rose from modest beginnings as a dancing girl to become the independent ruler of a prosperous territory in nineteenth-century North India. The second, and more ambitious project, investigates the various architectural products built, commissioned, and patronized by the Tata Corporation during India’s long twentieth-century transformation from a European colony to a socialist nation and most recently to an economically-liberal state eager to participate in global markets.

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