The first ever conference of the Association for Asian Studies in Africa (A-ASIA) has ended in Accra, Ghana. Hosted by the University of Ghana, Legon, the resoundingly successful three day conference had the theme “Africa-Asia: A New Axis of Knowledge.”
The conference was organized by the Association for Asian Studies in Africa (A-ASIA) with the active support of the International Institute of Asian Studies (IIAS) and the International Convention of Asian Scholars (ICAS). The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Chiang Ching Kuo Foundation, the Japan Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation, the Seoul National University Asia Centre, the Social Science Research Council, Ashesi University, and the University of Ghana provided logistical and financial support for the conference.
Over 200 scholars, policy-makers, and activists from all over the globe attended the conference and participated in the over 70 panels and roundtables. At the conference banquet, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Professor Ernest Aryeetey, formally announced that the University was setting up an Asian Studies Centre.
For conference organizers, the historic conference should provide the required fillip for closer collaboration between African and Asian scholars on far more detailed, in-depth, and trans-disciplinary research on Africa-Asia relations beyond the prevailing fixation on geo-politics, economics, and trade. The Association for Asian Studies in Africa (A-ASIA) will co-ordinate and serve as the key anchor for the promotion of Asian studies within Africa, as well as this envisaged collaboration between African and Asian scholars.