September, 2013

The Asia Institute Representative visits Institute for Advanced Study  


The Asia Institute’s communications director Arthur E. Michalak spent two afternoons at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, New Jersey discussing similarities in the two institutions’ mission statements to establish a relationship. Topics of common interest identified included the public debate about technology, society, and the environment. The Asia Institute plans a follow up visit to Institute for Advanced Study for spring of 2014.

The Institute for Advanced Study is a private academic institution dedicated to theoretical research in the sciences and humanities. Founded in 1930 to encourage innovative scholarly work unfettered by teaching or graduate advising duties, it attracts some of the world’s top thinkers who devote their time here to innovative research in nascent areas of human curiosity that bear promise of significant breakthroughs.  Thirty-three Nobel laureates and more than 70 percent of all Fields Medal recipients have been associated with IAS.  Former intellectual luminaries include Albert Einstein and Robert Oppenheimer, who headed the atomic bomb project during the Second World War.

Arthur Michalak met with Professor Nicola di Cosmo and Michael Gehret in the first week of September to discuss overlapping imperatives in the research agendas of the two institutions with the aim of establishing a relationship.

Professor Nicola di Cosmo is the Luce Foundation Professor in East Asian Studies whose principal area of interest is the history of relations between China and Inner Asia from prehistory to the modern period.  Professor di kristen stewart pokies Cosmo has published on the early history of China’s relations with steppe wanderers.  Both di Cosmo and The Asia Institute director Emanuel Pastreich, who had been at Harvard together previously, were drawn together by a common interest in pre-modern Asia. Professor di Cosmo expressed interest in visiting Korea to present his research at conferences and to glean fruitful ideas from fellow researchers also interested in connecting strands of work.

The conversation next focused on ways to encourage more Korean researchers to consider appointments at IAS, fund raising, and awareness about research IAS activities in Korea.  Another meeting was arranged with Michael Gehret, associate director for development and public affairs. Mr. Gehret is an established development professional with extensive not-for-profit experience. Mr. Gehret’s main concern was about fund raising to host Korean researchers.

The importance of the two meetings lies in the nature of the two institutions.  The Institute for Advanced Study engages in human curiosity that has wide reaching impact on the field of global development.  The Asia Institute is an emerging public policy think tank whose unique approach to addressing critical issues in technology, society, and environment in East Asia.  IAS would like to connect with more Korean researchers in sciences and humanities; The Asia Institute is pursuing relationships with researchers in Korea and beyond who are inspired by developments that not only address scientific issues, but also uncover social issues that must be addressed, in part by national and international policies, and in part by individual decisions.