Public Talk with Arthur Holcombe: Founder The Poverty Alleviation Fund

News item posted on: March 30th, 2011
Public Talk with Arthur Holcombe, Founder The Poverty Alleviation Fund

The Tibet Center at UVa invites you attend a public talk entitled “China’s Approaches to Poverty Reduction–Role of The Poverty Fund in Tibetan Townships” by Arthur Holcombe the founder of the Tibet Poverty Alleviation Fund (Now The Poverty Alleviation Fund).

Monday, April 4, 2011
3:00 – 4:00pm, NAU Hall, Room 342

Arthur Holcombe was Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme and Resident Coordinator of UN Operational Activities in China during 1992-1998, and during this period was also accredited to the People’s Republic of China as the UN Resident Coordinator and representative of the UN Secretary General. During 1992-1998, Mr. Holcombe initiated many programs and workshops to promote poverty reduction, employment, environmental protection, improved basic health and education and increased HIV/AIDS awareness.

Prior to 1992, Arthur Holcombe served in many postings with UNDP, including as Deputy and Acting Resident Representative in Afghanistan (1975-79); as Deputy Resident Representative in Pakistan (1979); as Resident Representative of UNDP in the South Pacific based in Fiji (1980-1984); and as Resident Representative in the Sudan (1984-1985). During 1989-91 he was Deputy Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and Pacific of UNDP at its headquarters in New York.

In 1998 Arthur Holcombe established the Tibet Poverty Alleviation Fund to promote Tibetan livelihoods and well being in rural areas of the Tibet Autonomous Region of China. Main project activities included employable skills training, township and village enterprise development, rural micro credit, milk production and dairy development in rural Nomad areas and Tibetan artisan products development and sales.

Since 2000, Dr. Holcombe has also given lectures on various development and aid strategy topics at the Brandeis University Heller School of Social Policy and at Beijing Normal University.

Arthur Holcombe has an A.B. from Harvard College (Government), an M.P.I.A. from the University of Pittsburgh (Economic and Social Development) and a Ph. D. from New York University (Economics).

– UVA Campus: Nau Hall 342 at 3-4pm on Monday, April 4, 2011

Public Talk with Visiting Fellows: Tashi Phuntsok & Drolma Kyab

News item posted on: March 21st, 2011
Public Talk with Visiting Fellows: Tashi Phuntsok & Drolma Kyab

The Tibet Center at UVa and the Curry School of Education co-sponsored Education to Employment Program (E2E) invites you to the next set of lectures in the brown bag lunch seminar series.  Visiting fellows Tashi Phunstok and Drolma Kyab will share about their current work and their future aspirations, as well as take questions from the audience.   Bring your lunch, and enjoy the next talks in this important series.

Tashi Phuntsok
Founder, Travel Wild Tibet

Monday, March 21
12:00 – 12:45pm, Ruffner Hall (Curry School), Room G004B

Tashi Phuntsok is the founder of TRAVEL WILD TIBET travel company that mostly specializes all kind of tours throughout Amdo and Kham regions of Tibet. He is also an intellectual with a passion for Tibetan life and culture, he is well versed in  the history of the Tibetan plateau, Tibetan musical traditions, and the ancient and modern culture of all Tibetan regions.  In addition, he is an experienced photographer and videographer, and has documented the daily life of Tibetans as well as remote landscapes on video and film.  He has worked as a travel agent, tour guide, and agency manager since 1999.  He has organized and guided the trips of researchers, filmmakers, photographers, explorers and backpackers throughout the Tibetan world.

Drolma Kyab
Tibet Namchen Travel Agency

Monday, March 21
1:00-1:45pm, Ruffner Hall (Curry School), Room G004B

Drolma Kyab exemplifies the entrepreneurial spirit. After starting his career as a rickshaw driver in Lhasa, Drolma Kyab worked his way up in travel companies for eight years before striking out on his own and establishing the Tibet Namchen Travel Agency and Hotel Services Company.  Tibet Namchen has been operating for the last six years and employs over twenty people. Drolma Kyab is committed to the advancement and enrichment of his staff and other Tibetans interested in tourism–the largest industry in Tibetan areas of China. This commitment to creating training opportunities for local Tibetans to improve their competitiveness in the tourism industry in central Tibet made Drolma Kyab an excellent choice for the TEEI fellowship program. Through the TEEI fellowship Drolma Kyab would like to connect with institutions and organizations that can help him to create a curriculum centered on practical skills development for Tibetans interested in entering the tourism industry or for those already in the field who seek to advance their careers.

Talk by Fiona McConnell

News item posted on: March 20th, 2011
Challenging the Territorial Trap: The Sovereign Articulations of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile, A Seminar with Dr. Fiona McConnell

Dr. McConnell’s interests lie in the everyday construction of statehood and sovereignty in cases of tenuous territoriality, and intersect with scholarship in political geography, development studies, critical international relations and political anthropology. Located within and between theories of sovereignty, statehood and territory, and issues of transnationalism, diaspora and refugeehood, the focus of her doctoral research was on exile politics and the Tibetan community in India. Her current work extends this research and focuses on issues of the diplomatic practices of unrecognised states, geographies of peace and sovereign futures.

Fiona McConnell is currently an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology at  Newcastle University.

Nau Hall, Room 342, 5:00-6:30pm

Sponsored by the Center for South Asian Studies

Politics of Tibet Policy

News item posted on: March 16th, 2011
Politics of Tibet Policy

Institutional Politics and the Politics of Policy

An interdisciplinary exploration of the question of Tibet in the context of institutional politics and the politics of policy change in the PRC

  • Pitman Potter, Professor of Law and Hong Kong Bank Chair in Asian Research, Institute of Asian Research, University of British Columbia
  • Tsering Shakya, Canadian Research Chair in Religion and Contemporary Society in Asia, University of British Columbia
  • Dibyesh Anand, Associate Professor, Department of Politics, University of Westminster, London
  • Tseten Wangchuk, Discussant, Senior Fellow, UVa Tibet Center

Friday, March 18, 2011 Nau Hall Auditorium 3 – 5pm

Cosponsored by the East Asia Center, and the Center for South Asian Studies.

For more information, contact tr8n@virginia.edu

Public Talk With Visiting Fellows: Lhamo Deva and Tashi Tsering

News item posted on: March 1st, 2011
Public Talk With Visiting Fellows: Lhamo Deva and Tashi Tsering

E2E Invites you to attend: Tuesday, March 1 – Nau Hall 342

The Tibet Center at UVa and the Curry School of Education co-sponsored Education to Employment Initiative invites you to hear two speakers as part of our brown bag lunch seminar series.  Visiting fellows Lhamo Deva and Tashi Tsering will share about their current work and their future aspirations, as well as take questions from the audience.  Bring your lunch, and enjoy hearing from two participants in this important program.

Lhamo Deva: 11:30am – 12:15pm
Operations Manager, Winrock International

Tashi Tsering: 12:30pm – 1:15pm
Eastern Tibet Training Institute

Lhamo Deva has been the central Tibetan in Winrock International as its operations manager.

Winrock International is one of two primary recipients of USAID funding for work with Tibetan communities, and at present is of the main international NGOs working with Tibetans in China on a full spectrum of activities. Its three main areas are livelihoods, cultural preservation, and environmental conservation. As the operations manager in the home office in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, Lhamodeva plays a key role in all aspects of the work across all three areas and has a broad understanding of the work of Winrock and its diverse partners.

In her talk, Lhamo will introduce one of Winrock’s current projects in Kham and Amdo under the TSERING project.




Tashi Tsering
Eastern Tibet Training Institute

Tuesday, March 1
12:30-1:15pm, Nau Hall 342

Tashi Tsering is a new member of Eastern Tibet Training Institute (www.etti.org). ETTI was founded in 2004 as a not-for-profit community school working to improve the livelihoods of remote communities in China’s southwest through training-based poverty alleviation programs. ETTI’s flagship program is the Youth Pre-Employment Training Program. This program is designed to help unemployed rural youth find their first job. Participants receive training in languages, computer literacy, basic accounting, customer service and life skills. It also includes an on-the-job training component delivered in partnership with local enterprise. ETTI is located in Shangri-la, formerly Zhongdian, in Yunnan province. To date, more than 200 young people have graduated from the Youth Pre-Employment Training Program, with more than 90 per cent securing jobs before or soon after graduating. Graduates have found jobs in a variety of local enterprises. Some graduates have gone on to develop small businesses and tourism-related projects in their home villages.
Another part of Tsering’s work is a tourism company that he started with two other Tibetans in Beijing, China.  High-end tourism is a growing area of China’s economy, but there was a lack of tour guides able to meet the growing demand. Tsering came up with the idea to train some Tibetans as high-end tour guides on the platform of ETTI.

Seminar by Visiting Scholar Chen Xufeng

News item posted on: February 2nd, 2011
Seminar on Environmental Liability Insurance in the Tibetan Region: An Assessment of Needs

Professor Chen Xufeng (Dechen)

On Monday, February 7th the University of Virginia Tibet Center hosts Visiting Scholar Chen Xufeng (Dechen) for a discussion of her research at the intersection of insurance law and the environment in China.

Chen Xufeng (Dechen) is an Associate Professor of Law at Minzu University in Beijing. Her research focuses on insurance law and environmental legal issues. Professor Chen has been a visiting scholar at the University of Virginia Tibet Center from 2010-11.

– UVA Campus: Nau Hall 342 at 5-6pm on Monday, February 7, 2011

Minorities Studies and Tibet Research: A Seminar on Minzuxue

News item posted on: March 31st, 2010
Minorities Studies and Tibet Research in the PRC

A Seminar on Minzuxue with Professor Liu Zhiyang

On January 28, Visiting Professor Liu Zhiyang led a seminar on minorities studies and Tibet research in the PRC. The seminar provided UVa students and faculty a opportunity to learn about a research and scholarly field that has undergone a significant transition over the past generation.

A professor at Zhongshan University in Guangzhou, Liu Zhiyang himself specializes in Tibetan studies and has conducted extensive field research, both in Lhasa and in the Tibetan-Yi corridor of Pingwu county and elsewhere on the Sino-Tibetan frontier. He has been resident at the University of Virginia through the Tibet Center over the past academic year.

In his seminar, Professor Liu discussed the meaning and direction of minzu xue in China. He also spoke on the direction that China’s Tibetan studies (zang xue) are heading. In particularly, he discussed the complexity of the term minzu. The concept has denoted different meanings at different times. Its translation into English has, correspondingly, led to some confusion. Today, according to Professor Liu, it is a politicized concept.

Liu Zhiyang contrasted the development of minorities studies with the discipline of anthropology (renleixue). Considered politically suspect, anthropology was eliminated as a field of study in China in favor of minorities studies. Today, the two fields have converged, with the one clear distinction that Chinese anthropology also includes within its purview the study of cultural difference among the “Han” nationality, while minorities studies does not.

Professor Liu recently returned to Guangzhou where he will continue teaching anthropology, minorities studies and Tibetan studies.

Minorities Studies and Tibet Research in the People’s Republic of China: A Seminar on Minzuxue

News item posted on: March 23rd, 2010

Liu Zhiyang
Zhongshan University

Tashi Rabgey
University of Virginia

On January 28, Visiting Professor Liu Zhiyang led a seminar on minorities studies and Tibet research in the PRC. The seminar provided UVa students and faculty a opportunity to learn about a research and scholarly field that has undergone a significant transition over the past generation.

A professor at Zhongshan University in Guangzhou, Liu Zhiyang himself specializes in Tibetan studies and has conducted extensive field research, both in Lhasa and in the Tibetan-Yi corridor of Pingwu county and elsewhere on the Sino-Tibetan frontier. He has been resident at the University of Virginia through the Tibet Center over the past academic year.

In his seminar, Professor Liu discussed the meaning and direction of minzu xue in China. He also spoke on the direction that China’s Tibetan studies (zang xue) are heading. In particular, he discussed the complexity of the term minzu. The concept has denoted different meanings at different times. Its translation into English has, correspondingly, led to some confusion. Today, according to Professor Liu, it is a politicized concept.

Liu Zhiyang contrasted the development of minorities studies with the discipline of anthropology (renleixue). Considered politically suspect, anthropology was eliminated as a field of study in China in favor of minorities studies. Today, the two fields have converged, with the one clear distinction that Chinese anthropology also includes within its purview the study of cultural difference among the “Han” nationality, while minorities studies does not.

Professor Liu recently returned to Guangzhou where he will continue teaching anthropology, minorities studies and Tibetan studies.

Lecture by Dibyesh Anand, Tibet’s Strategic Importance and Sino-Indian Relations

News item posted on: September 2nd, 2009
Tibet’s Strategic Importance and Sino-Indian Relations

By Dr. Dibyesh Anand, Associate Professor in International Relations, University of Westminster, UK

Dr. Dibyesh Anand

Dr. Dibyesh Anand

Charting the history and politics of introduction and implementation of ideas and practices of sovereignty, liberation, buffer state, and border, I will argue that Tibet’s strategic location has been constructed through an interaction between imperial histories, shifting geopolitics, and postcolonial state formation in China and India. What are the main strategic priorities for the two Asian countries in the Himalayan region? It is not the presence of many Tibetan exiles in India but the legacy of traditional Tibetan polity on boundary issue that is a source of tension in China-India relations. The lecture will offer a new perspective by ascribing the sensitivities over the border to a combination of Tibet’s strategic importance (military, economic, ecological) to China and India’s evolution into what I call ‘Postcolonial Informal Empires’.

Dr. Dibyesh Anand is a Reader (Associate Professor) in international relations at Westminster University in London. His publications are in the areas of Global Politics, Tibet, China, Hindu Nationalism, and Security. He is the author of Geopolitical Exotica: Tibet in Western Imagination (University of Minnesota Press, 2007) and Hindu Nationalism in India and the Politics of Fear (Palgrave Macmillan, Forthcoming). He is currently working on a book China’s Tibet, a research project on Sino-Indian border regions, and majority-minority relations in India and China.

Geotourism Policy Workshop

News item posted on: July 25th, 2009

February 22 – 27, 2009

As part of the Geotourism Initiative, Machik, co-hosted a workshop on tourism policy in Tibet with policymakers from the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR). The workshop was held from February 22 to 27, 2009. The goal of the workshop was to explore alternative models of tourism that prioritize Tibetan communities, local economies and sustainable livelihoods. Supporting organizations and participants included the Center for Sustainable Destinations of the National Geographic Society and George Washington University Business School’s Tourism and Hospitality Management.