The Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (APARC) condemns the systemic nature and brutal expression of racism in the United States, and we stand in full support of protestors and civil rights organizations in their calls for social justice, equal access to basic rights, and accountability. Beyond reaffirming our commitment to these values, we recognize the imperative to do better as an institution and the urgent need to take concrete action to build a more inclusive community here at our Stanford home. We have joined our colleagues at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies in developing specific steps towards that goal. But we also want to take initial, immediate action in moving from protest to progress.
That’s why we are announcing today a new diversity grant to support Stanford students from underrepresented minorities with an interest in studying issues related to contemporary Asia. The field of Asian studies suffers from an extreme paucity of students, scholars, and experts who self-identify as Black/African American or as affiliated with other underrepresented minority groups. “The path towards a more diverse and inclusive field isn’t easy or straightforward, but we must get on it,” says APARC Director and FSI Senior Fellow Gi-Wook Shin. “We believe that we can tackle the existing disparity if relevant stakeholders across institutes of higher learning all work together. APARC is looking to start this change at Stanford.”
The purpose of the APARC Diversity Grant is to encourage Stanford students from underrepresented minorities (URM) to engage in study and research of topics related to contemporary Asia and U.S.-Asia relations, including economic, health, foreign policy, social, political, and security issues. We follow the University’s definition of the URM category as encompassing “all U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have self-identified as American Indian/Alaska Native, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander.” This grant opportunity is open to current Stanford undergraduate and graduate students in the URM category from any major or discipline. “This is just a small step to start lowering disciplinary, cultural, and funding barriers that hinder broader student participation in Asian studies,” notes Shin.
APARC will award a maximum of $10,000 per grant to support a wide range of research expenses such as travel to/from research sites, academic conferences, and workshops (dependent on COVID-19 restrictions); conference registration fees; professional development training programs; purchase of physical and digital books or other required materials; and access to relevant online resources. APARC will review grant applications for projects taking place in winter/spring 2021 on a rolling basis starting on September 1, 2020. Reviews of the second round of applications, for projects taking place in summer/fall 2021, will begin on April 1, 2021.
Examples of research topics, in addition to those that Asia scholars typically study, could include China’s growing activities in Africa; understanding the evolving relations between Asian Americans and African Americans in the United States; and comparative examinations of issues such as the treatment of minorities in Asia and the United States or policies that promote anti-discriminatory practices in schools, the workplace, and other settings in Asian countries and the United States.
We will consider only applications that include all supporting documents.