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UCI International Studies  

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October 4, 2012
Rajiv Chandrasekaran, National Editor, Washington Post, "Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty," cosponsored by the Center for the Study of Democracy

October 11, 2012
Ayesha Nibbe, Assistant Professor, Anthropology, Hawaii Pacific University, "Who Is Joseph Kony … and Does Kony 2012 Matter?," cosponsored by UC-CUBA

October 18, 2012
Minxin Pei, Claremont McKenna College, "Party Time in Beijing: Prospect for Change after China's Leadership Transition," cosponsored by Center for Asian Studies

October 29, 2012
Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China, "China Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflections," cosponsored by the Center for Asian Studies and Center for Global Peace and Conflict Studies

October 31, 2012
Mustafa Akyol, Columnist for two Turkish dailies, Star and Hurriyet Daily News, "Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty," cosponsored by the Center for Citizen Peacebuilding and the Program in Religious Studies

November 15, 2012
Global Engagement of UCI Students, "International Education Week"

December 6-7, 2012
"UCI and Africa: Expanded Engagements, Ongoing Dialogues," two-day conference

Event Calendar

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For more information on International Studies at UCI as well as for job announcements, grants, and conferences, visit us online.

To submit news and events for the next quarterly International Studies newsletter, please contact Carrie Reiling.

Director's Message from Cecelia Lynch

Welcome to UCI's international studies program for 2012–2013. This promises to be an enriching and exciting year in international studies, headlined by two conferences and an inspiring roster of speakers for our International Studies Public Forum (ISPF) series. The conferences include one on UCI's multiple engagements in Africa in December 2012, and a May 2013 workshop funded by a grant from the dean of Social Science on Proposal Writing for Interpretive Methodologies to focus on graduate students and junior professors. Our ISPF speaker series, in which we are partnering with many other centers and programs on campus, brought to campus already such speakers as Rajiv Chandrasekaran on Islam and liberty, Minxin Pei on transitions in Chinese leadership, and Ayeshe Nibbe on the KONY 2012 campaign, with others to come. All the fall speakers can be seen in the sidebar on the left. In addition, our faculty are making waves through their leadership positions in professional associations and their research initiatives around the world (see Faculty in the News), and our affiliated centers, programs, and institutes sponsored a wide variety of grants, seminars, workshops and conferences last year, with more planned for the year to come (see Affiliated Centers). The Critical Investigations into Humanitarianism in Africa blog (The CIHA Blog) received an important grant from the Henry R. Luce Foundation to explore the positive and problematic nature of religious and secular conceptions of charity vis-a-vis Africa and to initiate collaborations with people and institutions in South Africa, Ghana, and Senegal.

Our students continue to receive major awards, and our International and Global Studies Club has begun a student-to-student mentorship program that has already received a great response, while our Phi Sigma Iota Honor Society is gearing up for a year of discussion and debate on contemporary global issues. Moreover, we are extremely pleased to announce a major new internship opportunity for our students this fall on International Humanitarian Law with the Red Cross.

Read on for more news of our Faculty, Undergraduates, and Affiliated Centers, Programs, and Institutes.

Faculty in the News

Political science professor Etel Solingen began her term as the president of the 5,800-plus-member International Studies Association, the premier organization in the field, with a public address, "The Politics of International Diffusion: Regional and Global Dimensions," at the April 2012 ISA annual meeting in San Diego. Solingen, a Chancellor's Professor at UCI, is one of the world's foremost experts on international political economy and regional orders, nuclear proliferation and international security. Her book, Nuclear Logics: Contrasting Paths in East Asia and the Middle East, received the APSA's 2008 Woodrow Wilson Foundation Award for best book in the discipline and the APSA's 2008 Robert Jervis and Paul Schroeder Award for the Best Book on International History and Politics. Her scholarship has been recognized with numerous other national awards, including a MacArthur Foundation Research Award on Peace and International Cooperation, a Social Science Research Council–MacArthur Foundation Fellowship on Peace and Security, an APSA Excellence in Mentorship Award and a UCI Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award. Solingen has been representing ISA and invited as keynote speaker at high-level conferences in Moscow, Brisbane, Edinburgh, Madrid, Porto, Puebla (Mexico) and Buenos Aires, and has also presented her research in Berlin, Tokyo, Jerusalem, MIT and Harvard, among others. Read on...

Anthropology professor Bill Maurer is co-director of UCI's Intel Science and Technology Center for Social Computing, a new center opened June 1 that applies social science and the humanities to the design and analysis of digital information. The center has been featured in the Los Angeles Times and other news outlets. Another anthropology professor, Tom Boellstorff, is an ISTC faculty participant working on explaining how social sciences intersects with computer science. Read on...

Political science professor Cecelia Lynch wrote an op-ed for the Christian Science Monitor about Kony 2012 and has also received a $40,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to develop collaborative ties with institutions in Africa, on the theme of "Charity, Representation, and Humanitarianism in Africa: Religious and Secular Perspectives." Both stem from the blog she edits, Critical Investigations into Humanitarianism in Africa (CIHA); blog posts have been reprinted by Al Jazeera, Dissent, and many other news outlets. Lynch has also received a $50,000 supplementary fellowship from the Andrew W. Mellon's New Directions program to continue her work on "Islamic and Interfaith Religious Ethics in World Crises." She was chosen as the International Studies Association's NGO representative to the United Nations; her role is to facilitate access for ISA members to the UN's global conferences.

Political science assistant professor Daniel Brunstetter has been widely cited on the morality of drones, including in the New York Times, offering a perspective from the just-war tradition. The Atlantic requested a follow-up article, "Can We Wage a Just Drone War?," where Brunstetter argued that drone warfare is not used as it should be - a last resort - and that it cannot lead to a lasting and just peace.

Research by Karen Leonard, anthropology professor and chair, was featured in the Washington Post and the Economic Times. Leonard examines the Punjabi Sikh–Mexican American community in California in the early 20th century and how it is one illustration of larger Sikh immigration to the United States.

Kamal Sadiq, associate professor of political science, was quoted in the New York Times about his research that de-links citizenship and birthplace. Read on...

In his new book, Islam and Temporal Power, social sciences and international studies lecturer Bojan Petrovic seeks to define the relationship between Islamic religious and state powers in predominantly Muslim countries. Read on...

International Studies Undergrads

Welcome to the new year in international studies! We are meeting new IS majors and minors and reconnecting with current IS students through a series of events during the fall quarter, including the Department Dialogues information session and the Dean's Welcome Reception sponsored by the School of Social Sciences, events sponsored by the International and Global Studies Club and the Sigma Iota Rho Honor Society, and two lunches for students on October 23 and 24 with professor Cecelia Lynch, IS director. IS remains one of the campus's largest majors, with 337 student majors graduating last spring, and its affiliated minor and certificate program continue to be extremely popular with majors and non-majors alike.

Congratulations to our IS award winners! IS major Fatima Temory won second prize in the spring 2012 MESSI Policy Paper contest, which showcases research on the Middle East. Additionally, Myles Brady, a business economics and anthropology double major, received the David and Kristin Rosten International & Community Service Scholarship, which is awarded to students who are planning a career in international affairs and/or public/community service. This fall, IS major Rocio La Rosa won the very competitive Dr. Ryoji Yokoyama scholarship for study in international relations.

IS students are also award-winners beyond the classroom. IS major Ryan Cheung, with doubles partner Robert Yim, won the 126th annual Southern California Men's Open Section Championships in July.

IS majors continue to have transformative experiences through studying abroad. Over the past year, 90 UCI international studies majors joined in study abroad programs in 15 countries, spanning four continents. (Check out their photos from Germany, France, and China on our website.) This year, study abroad has a new faculty director, political science professor Daniel Brunstetter, who replaces Dr. Glenn Levine. Brunstetter has traveled to over 75 countries on six continents and has studied in 11 countries as a student and professor. He has also been an integral part of the Olive Tree Initiative at UCI. He can be contacted at dbrunste@uci.edu.

IS students also have a good year ahead of them in the academically oriented, student-run International & Global Studies Club. Being an active member of the club will provide ample opportunities to discuss contemporary issues, engage with students and faculty who share common interests, and be part of the international studies community. All students are encouraged to participate, contribute their thoughts and enjoy all elements of global studies. The club also sponsors a mentorship program for majors to build relationships among their peers and to receive guidance on coursework, double majoring, leadership opportunities, and other aspects of a student's academic career. For more information on the club and the mentorship program, please contact igscuci@gmail.com.

Undergraduate Internship Program

For those IS majors interested in learning more about international humanitarian law, international studies is teaming up with the Red Cross for a fantastic fall and winter internship opportunity to help the organization further its activities in Southern California, while receiving 2 credits for each quarter of the internship.

Students work a minimum of four hours two days a week during the fall and winter quarters at the Red Cross office in Santa Ana or in direct field implementation, as well as complete a short series of Red Cross courses and training. For more information on this internship opportunity, please contact Ramon Munoz (rmunoz@uci.edu).

Forthcoming Conferences Sponsored by International Studies at UCI

An interdisciplinary group of scholars and NGO representatives at UCI is organizing a conference titled "UCI and Africa: Expanded Engagements, Ongoing Dialogues," which will bring together numerous initiatives and collaborations by UCI faculty, Education Abroad, students, and local nongovernmental organizations, to be held at UCI December 6–7. Researchers from around the United States and from the African continent are scheduled to attend and present research on a wide range of topics, including religious and secular conceptions of charity, protest and popular culture, financial inclusion, literature, NGOs, education, and religion and secularism. For more information or to register for the conference, please contact Benjamin Cox, Carrie Reiling, or Tanya Schwarz.

International studies faculty Cecelia Lynch, George Marcus, and Keith Murphy and graduate student Tanya Schwarz also received a grant from the School of Social Sciences to sponsor an interpretive methods workshop, "Interpretive Methods for Grant Proposal Development," in May 2013. UCI and visiting faculty will provide instruction to graduate students and junior faculty on how to write grant proposals for research projects that utilize interpretive methods and methodologies.

Affiliated Centers

International studies acts as a hub for 17 affiliated Social Science centers and institutes and a number of other centers campus-wide. Recent and upcoming event highlights include:

The Center for Global Peace and Conflict Studies supported a range of campus events during spring 2012, including co-sponsoring the well-attended Multi-Campus Workshop/Conference on Religion and Nationalism on May 17-18. In the midst of a busy spring, affiliates, staff, and friends of the center paused to mourn the passing of Julius Margolis, one of the center's founders and long a driving force behind our activities. Friends, colleagues, and professor Margolis' family gathered on May 16 to celebrate his life and reflect on his many contributions. Speakers from his home Department of Economics and other units across the campus shared their memories.

CGPACS also continued to support graduate student and faculty research. Congratulations to the recipients of this year's CGPACS seed grants: Mark Berlin (Political Science), Ben Cox (Anthropology), Josh Gellers (Political Science), Padma Govindan (Anthropology), Georgia Hartman (Anthropology), Tom Le (Political Science), Kimberly McKinson (Anthropology), Peter Owens (Sociology), Johanna Solomon (Political Science), Beijie Tang (Political Science), Amber Tierney (Sociology), Leah Zani (Anthropology), Prof. Cecelia Lynch (Political Science), Prof. Kamal Sadiq (Political Science), and Prof. Roxanne Varzi (Anthropology).

Anthropology professor Bill Maurer, director of the Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion (IMTFI), has been heavily quoted and cited over the summer with the proliferation of mobile payment platforms. One platform, Square, has teamed up with Starbucks, which could signal a watershed mark for the technology. While this technology is U.S.-only for now, mobile payments could potentially be used by individual entrepreneurs and small businesses around the world. Read about Maurer's research from the New York Times, CNBC, Marketplace Tech, and the Houston Chronicle.

December 5-6, IMTFI will be holding its annual conference that will bring together the institute's fourth year award recipients who will present their preliminary findings. As more and more philanthropic, industry, and development actors ask whether mobile technology can help provide access to needed financial services like savings and money transfer, these projects look to the experience on the ground of existing, traditional money systems and financial practices, as well as the potential and real impact of new technology in providing access to finance for the world's poor. More information will be forthcoming on IMFTI's website.

The program in public health, along with GHREAT: Global Health Research, Education, and Translation, are sponsoring two international studies–related lectures this fall. The first, on October 8, is a presentation by Deborah Mindry from the UCLA Center for Culture and Health, who will be speaking on "HIV and Reproductive Choices and Challenges: Provider and Client Perspectives from South Africa." On November 19, Annie Ro, from UCLA Community Health Sciences, and Mohammed Imran Khan, from the International Vaccine Institute in South Korea, will be presenting a seminar on "The Health Consequences of Asian Immigrant Integration."

Also in public health, lecturer Brandon Brown recently initiated two studies at the community center Epicentro in Lima, Peru. Both studies will address sexual health in high-risk populations and aim to develop new diagnostic and treatment technologies.

The Department of European Languages and Studies is organizing a conference titled "Visions of Europe: Unity and Vision" on March 1-2, 2013. This conference will attempt to envision Europe - both today and in the past - through the eyes of its citizens, neighbors, and colonial subjects. We are interested in theories of Europe (the way it has been envisioned) and images of Europe (in film, literature, and the arts) that highlight both its internal diversity and its significance for others. For more information, please contact David Pan (dtpan@uci.edu).

The Olive Tree Initiative sent a 33-member delegation in September to Jordan, Israel, and the Palestinian territories on its annual three-week diplomatic mission. OTI has expanded to six California campuses to promote peaceful discourse about seemingly intractable conflicts around the world.

The Religious Studies program held a conference, co-sponsored by International Studies, on Religion and Nationalism last May, featuring the work and perspectives of scholars who focused on the historical and contemporary experiences of the Arab world, Israel, Iran, China, Russia, the United States, and Latin America. Presenters sought to answer the questions of what social needs religion and nationalism might fulfill, what human psychology they reveal, and whether they offer important clues to who we are.

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School of Social Sciences
University of California, Irvine
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