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York Centre for Asian Research Updates                    Issue 70, Friday, December 1, 2006

In this issue

Academic Events

 Today@York: CANCAPS holds 14th annual conference on economics and diplomacy
  Sociocultural Events  YCAR invites you to its annual holiday reception

ProfDev Opportunities

 Asia Foundation seeks junior associates in Asian affairs

Call for Proposals

 CGIAR-Canada Linkage Fund calls for proposals

Asian News - Singapore

 National museum to re-open with month-long celebrations

CANCAPS holds 14th annual conference on balancing economics and diplomacy
1-3 December 2006, York University, Toronto

The 14th annual CANCAPS conference starts today at York University. Discussion topics include: Natural Resources and Canada-Asia Pacific Relations; Canada’s Economic Relations with China; After the Tsunami: Canada’s Response to Emergencies; China’s Human Rights and Asian Security: Activists and Academics in Dialogue; The Changing Nature of Human Security; Dealing with North Korea; Canada’s Changing Role in Afghanistan. See the CANCAPS Conference website for detailed information and conference agenda.

Also today from 12:30-2pm at 304 Calumet College, the City Institute at York University (CITY) presents an interdisciplinary series of presentations and discussions on urban landscapes, past and present. Don Dippo and Raymond Rogers from York Education and Faculty of Environmental Studies, will talk on “Social Unionism in a University Context: The YUFA Community Projects Committee”.

Asian Institute, with the Dr. David Chu Program in Asia Pacific Studies, presents Transnational Adoption Conference, Dec 8-9, 2006, Vivian & David Campbell Conference Facility, MCIS, 1 Devonshire Place

The event on Day 1 will open with film presentations and panel discussions on the themes "Journey of Hope" and "Made in China" by film makers Karen Jewel and Karin Lee. Day 2 will include sessions on Transnational Adoption – National and International Trends, and What Does Research Tells Us?, Transnational Adoption – Identity, Race, and Culture and Family and Community. Speakers include distinguished scholars from Canada and USA as well as from the Chinese Cultural Centres in Toronto. For more information and to register for the event, visit the MCIS events website. The event is supported by the Centre for the Study of Korea and Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies.

YCAR invites you to its annual holiday reception

The York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR) would like to invite you to its Annual Holiday Reception on Monday, December 11 from 3-6 pm at York Lanes 270, York University. Please feel free to bring food and drinks to share with everyone. We would like to take this opportunity to greet everyone a Happy Holiday Season and Best Wishes for the New Year!! Thank you very much for your continuing participation and support and we hope you can join us in celebrating another successful year for YCAR.

YCAR & Knox College to co-sponsor conference on Canadian Missionaries in Asia

YCAR and the Centre for Asian-Canadian Theology and Ministry, Knox College invite you to a one day conference on Canadian Missionaries in Asia: Memory and Meaning in Asian-Canadian Churches. Thursday December 14, 2006, 10 Am – 4 Pm at Knox College, 59 St. George St. Toronto, Canada

In the 19th and 20th centuries Canadian missionaries went to China, Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Many Asian-Canadian churches have historic origins in those former missions. What historical and cultural legacies link those British Canadian missionaries and these Asian Canadian Christians? Do the personalities and theology of those Canadians reappear in the practices and faith of these churches? How are the early missionaries present (or not) in their collective memories? What does that mission history mean in the memory of Asian Canadian Christians?

Attendance is free but pre-registration is required. To register or for inquiries contact: Nam-soon Song at, tel 416-978-1884 or Michael Stainton,, tel 416-736-2100 x 33068. 

Asia Foundation seeks junior associates in Asian affairs

The Asia Foundation invites graduate students and recent graduate degree holders to apply for a limited number of opportunities as Junior Associates in Asian Affairs in the Foundation’s offices in San Francisco and Washington, D.C. These short-term affiliations are to further the professional development of individuals specifically interested in Asia. Successful applicants will gain further knowledge of the region and an understanding of the Foundation’s work through specific assignments such as the following: conducting research; contributing to proposal development; assisting with the design and implementation of programs; preparing reports on Foundation projects; and other tasks as needed. Associates may be invited for full or part-time positions for three months (February-April) during the spring with a monthly stipend. For detailed info, visit their website at

The Asia Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental organization committed to the development of a peaceful, prosperous, open, and just Asia-Pacific region. The Foundation supports programs in Asia that help improve governance and law, women's empowerment, economic reform and development, and international relations. Drawing on over 50 years of experience in Asia, the Foundation collaborates with private and public partners to support leadership and institutional development, exchanges, and policy research. With a network of 17 field offices in Asia, an office in Washington, D.C., and its headquarters in San Francisco, the Foundation addresses these issues on both a country and regional level.

TO APPLY, PROVIDE THE FOLLOWING: Application Form (Download application - pdf); Cover letter describing interests and skills; Resume; Official transcript; Writing sample (3-5 pages); Sealed recommendation letters from two faculty members and, if applicable, one employment supervisor. PLEASE SUBMIT BY DECEMBER 4, 2006 TO: Mr. Jon Peterson, Office of the President, The Asia Foundation, 465 California Street, 9th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94104.

Call for proposals for CGIAR-Canada Linkage Fund 2006-2007

The CGIAR-Canada Linkage Fund (CCLF), established in 1995 by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), provides funding to strengthen collaboration between Canada's science and research community and the “Future Harvest” International Agricultural Research Centers (IARCs) of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).

Facilitating Research Partnerships

The CGIAR is a network of 15 agricultural research centers dedicated to achieving sustainable natural resource management, improving food security and reducing poverty for the millions of poor producers and consumers in developing countries. Canada was a founding member of the CGIAR in 1971 and continues to be a major donor and active participant in the system.

Partnership and cooperation between IARCs, national agricultural research systems of developing countries (NARS), and advanced science and research institutions in industrialized countries are an important component of the CGIAR research system. Through the CGIAR-Canada Linkage Fund (CCLF), CIDA seeks to facilitate and encourage Canada’s science and research community to partner with the “Future Harvest” IARCs. The purpose is to increase Canada’s research collaboration in the search for creative solutions to pressing global problems of poverty, food insecurity and nutrition and sustainable management of the natural environment. The IARCs seek collaborative partnerships with advanced research institutions in industrialized countries to access new techniques and specialized expertise. Canadian partners, in turn, gain experience and insights into ecologies and agriculture and food systems of developing countries and regions. This year, in addition to Canadian Universities, research nodes of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) will be eligible to partner with IARCs in submitting proposals.

For FY 2006-07,
2 new grants up to CAD $ 225,000 are available, disbursed on a three-year schedule of up to CAD $ 75,000 per year. Proposals must be prepared in collaboration with and submitted by one of the eligible IARCs (i.e., WARDA Africa Rice Center (Benin), CIAT Centro Internacional de Agriculture Tropical (Colombia), CIMMYT Centro Internacional de Mejoramiento de Maiz y Trigo (Mexico), ICARDA - International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (Syria), IFPRI International Food Policy Research Institute (Washington DC), ILRI International Livestock Research Institute (Kenya), IPGRI International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (Italy), IRRI International Rice Research Institute (Philippines), IWMI International Water Management Institute (Sri Lanka) and ICRAF World Agroforestry Centre (Kenya). Canadian Universities such as University of Alberta, McGill University, University of Guelph, Universite de Sherbrooke, and Ryerson University that have active CCLF grants can apply, though an objective of the CCLF is to broaden relationships among Canadian institutions and IARCs as much as possible. In general, Canadian organizations should not have more than two projects in place or proposed.

The CCLF is a competitive grants facility open to proposals for collaboration which contribute to the above three objectives. The research must relate to current IARC Medium-Term Plans (MTPs) and to the System research priorities as set out by the CGIAR Science Council in its December, 2005, document
System Priorities for CGIAR Research 2005 – 2015 found at The proposed work can relate to either Center strategic priorities or novel and innovative, complimentary activities.

IARC scientists wishing to establish contact with appropriate Canadian University research groups are encouraged to consult the web site of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada at which has links to all Canadian universities. Similarly, contacts can be made with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada at .

Detailed info is available on CIDA website at Info on CGIAR and IARCs as well as researcher contacts can be found at and on CGIAR research priorities at

National museum to re-open with month-long celebrations
by Pearl Forss, Channel NewsAsia | Posted: 29 November 2006

SINGAPORE: The National Museum of Singapore will reopen on 8th December with a month-long opening festival showcasing Asian arts. The Museum had been closed for a 3-year renovation which cost S$118 million. At 119 years old, the National Museum is Singapore's oldest museum. But it also plans to use the most cutting edge technology to present its exhibits.

In fact, the Singapore History Gallery is housed inside Fort Canning Hill, where the funeral hearse of Chinese community leader Tan Jiak Kim, sits. Nearby, there is a circular wall where the visitor can immerse himself in a film where actors' movements are choreographed to resemble a dance. A 2.5 metre wall and deep beam structures hold the weight of the hill. The National Heritage Board considers the National Museum as Singapore's most important one because it tells the history of its people.

Professor Tommy Koh, Chairman of the National Heritage Board, says: "I think I will be failing the government and failing Singapore if we tell the history of Singapore in a propagandistic way. We will not do that. We will tell the history of Singapore in a fair, accurate and balanced way, and we also tell it from many people's perspective, not just one perspective."

There are also four living galleries which feature Singapore's film, fashion, food and photography. At the food gallery, one can smell the aroma of different traditional dishes, hear the distinctive sound of tok tok mee being prepared and feast one's eyes on the artistic presentation of different ingredients and cooking utensils. International exhibitions from Austria, Sweden and the Arab World will also be hosted at the National Museum in the year ahead. However, the most distinctive feature of the museum is not the exhibits, but the beauty of its architecture which fuses the contemporary with the traditional.

Colin Wu, Lead Architect of the National Museum, says: "What we have is the glass rotunda, which is a modern interpretation of the old rotunda. Within it is a 360 projection of a picture, image and a story. What's special about this thing is, in the night time, the blackout curtains that are creating the dark environment will be drawn up and the projection will be shown through the mesh, and it will actually become a little lantern.

"This feature happens to be strategically located at the mouth of the new fort canning tunnel which is going to be opened in December, so it is, in a way, a gesture to tell the public that this is a new museum and a new extension has been opened."  Film festivals, parties and theatre productions will also be staged, making the National Museum not just a repository of artefacts but a lifestyle destination.

Lee Chor Lin, Director of the National Museum of Singapore, says: "We want people to think that the museum is a place where they can go and hang out, learn things, look at beautiful things and contemplate life. Not only do we have galleries, we also have activities, cultural performances, and to complete it, we have enlarged our commercial zones which include four food and beverages outlets and two retail shops to satisfy the consumerist urge of our visitors." - CNA/so

York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR). For more information, contact
Ste. 270 York Lanes, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3J 1P3. Web: