History and Background

The UNE Asia Centre (UNEAC) was established by the University in July 1992. This initiative recognised the extensive expertise on Asia within the University of New England (UNE). UNE's Asia-related expertise is widely dispersed through all faculties. The establishment and work of UNEAC recognised this. The Centre was intended as a convenient central location for access to UNE's Asia expertise. UNEAC had a particular role in linking UNE Asia-related expertise with the New England region. The Centre has been through several iterations, including a name-change, since then, and is now part of the University's School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.

Australia, Asia and UNE

At its relaunch, under the new title of UNE Asia Pacific Centre (UNE-APC), the focus of the Centre was both broadened and narrowed. In a speech by Professor Shahram Akbarzadeh, of the University of Melbourne's Asia Institute, the professor pointed out the particular role of Islam in the region, and the concentration of expertise of Pakistan. Clearly, the addition of Pacific to the title broadens the geographical scope, but it is in the region where the Pacific meets Asia that the Centre is most concerned. Australia, of course, straddles this divide, and provides a nexus between East and South Asia, the Western and South Pacific regions.

As the Gillard Government's recent White Paper emphasises, Australia's future is inextricable from events and trends in the relations between these areas. It is also commonly observed that the weight of world affairs is shifting east and south. UNE recognises this, and has an established Asian studies program which emphasises the acquisition of Asian languages and specialisations in Asian studies. Asian expertise is not, however, limited to Asian studies as such. The diversity of Asian expertise through all of UNE's Schools is remarkable. In the social sciences, economics and business, political and international studies, religion, languages and history, UNE-APC incorporates an understanding of the importance of Australia's international context and plays a significant role in co-ordinating this expertise and experience. Other Australian universities are now making similar moves, and collaboration is one of UNE-APC's main aims.

What We Offer

  • Access to UNE's expertise on Asia and the Pacific Consultancy services and short course delivered online, at our Parramatta Campus, or at your premises, at your convenience. For further information, contact Dr Ken Fraser.
  • Research Fellowships for visiting academics These are an important part of the Centre's activities, and we aim to award around three per year. Contact Project Officer Dr Ken Fraser, or visit the website for further information.
  • International conferences and symposiaThe next, in March, is to be a symposium of Australia's relations with international institutions in the region.
  • Affiliated Fellow Scheme UNEAC operates a scheme of Affiliated Fellows where scholars can be formally attached to the UNE Asia Centre.
  • Public lectures & seminars Seminars and public lectures are organised for the benefit of the Armidale community and posted online for interested member of the public.
  • Links to UNE's Asian Studies programs For information on Asian studies programs, contact Dr Andrew Brown
  • UNE staff seeking Asia Centre-specific grants A number of grants are available. Contact Dr Fraser.
  • Electronic publishing UNE-APC publishes an electronic journal, UNEAC Asia Papers, available through this Web site. For further information, contact Dr Fraser. This journal well be re-launched with a special issue of papers developed from the symposium mentioned above.