Conference Announcement

We are pleased to announce the 23rd biennial conference of the Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) will be held at the University of Melbourne from 6th to the 9th July 2020. The University of Melbourne hosted the inaugural ASAA in 1976 and last hosted the conference in 2000.

The theme for the conference is Future Asias.

The biennial Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) Conference is the largest gathering of experts working on Asia in the southern hemisphere.  The  conference has been a regular feature of Australian scholarly life since 1976. The National Library of Australia has kept a record of these conferences since 2004, using its web archive service, Pandora. A full list of ASAA conferences, and any websites that still exist, is also available on the ASAA website.

The conference will give us the opportunity to explore and discuss the many factors that contribute to the overall Asian Studies success. There will be an exciting program of speakers, panels, social activities and lots of networking opportunities. Delegates will be able to share successful strategies, engage with key stakeholders and develop important partnerships.

We invite you to please mark the conference dates in your diary.  The conference organising committee also welcomes any ideas you have for additional conference events. We really hope that you will help make the conference a success.

Conference Convenor A/Professor Katharine McGregor 

Important Dates

12 June 2019

Call for Papers & Panels Open

15 November 2019

Call for Papers and Panels Closes

18 November 2019

Submitted Papers and Panels Review

11 December 2019

Notification of Review Results
Registration Open

17 January 2020

Presenter Registration Due

20 March 2020

Early Bird Registration Closes

ASAA Plenary Keynote Speaker

Dr. Samia Khatun
Senior Lecturer, Centre for Gender Studies, SOAS, University of London

Samia Khatun is Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Gender Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. She is a feminist historian of the British Empire, focussing on the life worlds and experiences of colonised peoples. Tackling the central role of the discipline of modern history in constructing myths of the superiority of white man, her research and writing develops methodologies to engage colonised peoples’ intellectual traditions to tackle gender, race and class oppressions and their intersections with environmental destruction in the colonial modern era. In doing so she take aim at a racist assumption that profoundly shapes contemporary scholarship about Asia and its diasporas: The claim that the knowledge traditions of Enlightened man have superseded the epistemologies of peoples colonised by European empires.  Full biography available on the speakers page.

Regional Keynotes

South Asian Studies Association of Australia
Society of Architecture Urban Historians of Asia
Malaysia and Singapore Society of Australia
China Studies Association of Australia
Ayesha Jalal
Tufts University
Jeffrey Hou
University of Washington
Michael Barr
Flinders University
Kam Louie
Honorary Professor at UNSW and HKU
Japanese Studies Association of Australia
Indonesia Council
Association of Mainland Southeast Asia Studies
Korean Studies Association of Australasia Sub-Region
Swee-Lin Ho
National University of Singapore
Garin Nugroho
Independent Filmmaker
Philip Hirsch
University of Sydney
Stephen Epstein
Victoria University of Wellington

Conference Host

The 23rd biennial conference of the Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) is proudly supported by the University of Melbourne.

Visit their website at

ASAA Postgraduate Conference Awards 

The ASAA Postgraduate Conference Awards are supported by our endowment fund, managed by the Australian National University for the ASAA as the ASAA Presidents’ Fund. The ASAA is offering 10 awards, for 10 postgraduate students to attend the 2020 ASAA Conference at the University of Melbourne on 6-9 July.

For further details and the application form click HERE.

Organising Committee

  • Kate McGregor (convenor)
    School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, Faculty of Arts
  • Jemma Purdey
    Executive Assistant, UniMelb
  • Chloe Ho
    Postgraduate Representative, UniMelb
  • Carman Fung
    Postgraduate Representative, UniMelb
  • Wendy Li
    Postgraduate Representative, UniMelb
  • Jianlin Chen
    Faculty of Law
  • Matt Galway
    School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, Faculty of Arts
  • Amanda Gilbertson
    Australia India Institute
  • Anoma Pieris
    Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning
  • Fran Martin
    School of Culture and Communication, Faculty of Arts
  • Sidh Sintusingha
    Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning
  • Jay Song
    Korean Studies, Asia Institute, Faculty of Arts
  • Pradeep Taneja
    School of Social and Political Studies, Faculty of Arts
  • Melissa Conley Tyler
    Director of Diplomacy, Asialink, UniMelb

Disciplinary Leads

  • A/Prof Jianlin Chen
    Faculty of Law, University of Melbourne (Law, Human rights and Criminology)
  • Dr Rachel Diprose
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Anthropology, Sociology and Development)
  • Dr Michael Ewing
    Asia Institute, University of Melbourne (Language and Linguistics)
  • Dr Matthew Galway
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Politics, International Relations and Security)
  • Dr Pradeep Taneja
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Politics, International Relations and Security) 
  • Dr Amanda Gilbertson
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Education)
  • Dr Rachel Hughes
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Human Geography and Demography)
  • Dr Edwin Jurriens
    Asia Institute, University of Melbourne (Interdisciplinary)
  • Dr Claire Maree
    Asia Institute, University of Melbourne (Gender and Sexuality) 
  • A/Prof Fran Martin
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Culture and Media)
  • A/Prof Kate McGregor
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (History)
  • Prof Anoma Pieris
    Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning, University of Melbourne (Built Environment and Urban studies)
  • Dr Jemma Purdey
    Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne (Australian Asians)
  • Dr John Tang
    Faculty of Economics, University of Melbourne (Economics and Political economy)

Meeting Venue

Established in 1853, the University of Melbourne is a public-spirited institution that makes distinctive contributions to society in researchlearning and teaching and engagement. It’s consistently ranked among the leading universities in the world, with international rankings of world universities placing it as number 1 in Australia and number 32 in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2017-2018).

Founding Members

Inaugural ASAA Conference, Melbourne 1976
L-R, Prof DP Singhal (UQ), Prof JD Legge (Monash), Prof Anthony Reid (ANU), Prof Nicholas Tarling (Auckland University)

Please join our mailing list to be updated as the planning of the conference proceeds.

ASAA acknowledges the traditional custodians of this land and we pay our respects to the Elders both past and present.


The Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA) is the peak body of university experts and educators on Asia in Australia. Established in 1976, we promote and support the study of Asia in Australian universities and knowledge of Asia among the broader community. Our membership is drawn mainly from academics and students, but also includes industry and government Asia experts. We take a strong interest in promoting knowledge about Asia in schools and in contributing to state and Commonwealth government policies related to Asia. We provide informed comment on Asia to a broad public through our bulletin, Asian Currents, and specialist research articles in our journal, Asian Studies Review. Four book series published under our auspices cover Southeast Asia, South Asia, East Asia and Women in Asia.

Conference Managers

Please contact the team at Conference Design with any questions regarding the conference.

Photo Credits: Visit Victoria

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