Your contribution enables the Association for Asian Studies to continue offering programs and opportunities to scholars around the world. Donations may be directed to the fund of your choice; please see below for complete descriptions of each. THANK YOU for supporting the future of Asian Studies!

To direct your donation toward a committee of the AAS, please visit our Committees page.

The Association for Asian Studies is a 501(c)(3) corporation and your contributions are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

A Message from AAS President Christine R. Yano

Dear Colleagues:

Greetings from across the Pacific! Hawai`i may be physically isolated, but we certainly have not been spared the disruptions of our time, from pandemics to political unrest. For our Association, the disruptions began with the cancellation of the Boston conference, then continued to the shift of AAS-in-Asia to a completely virtual format. The disruptions instigated new opportunities, such as the creation of a new Digital Dialogues series, funded by the Henry Luce Foundation. One of the first sessions addressed Black Lives Matter and the self-reflections of race in our profession. Another recent session tackled the issue of “Promoting Gender Equity and Fair Practices in Asian Studies.” These have been wonderfully creative solutions to disruption as a fact of life in our new normal, and have helped us further community in substantive ways.

In the midst of such tumult, I wanted to extend a sincere thank you for the kind support that many of you have offered and contributed to our Association over the past year. This began for some with donating their conference registration fees, for others with making separate donations, and for some simply with renewing their memberships. Undoubtedly, all support is valuable and much appreciated.

The chaotic times have asked that we plan and act with ever greater intentionality arising from a combination of shrinking relative resources and expanding horizons. The AAS strives to not only remain at the forefront of Asian Studies scholarship globally, but to broaden that forefront through inclusivity. We actively seek to engage with those disciplines, fields, and individuals that represent the diversity of Asian Studies in the 21st century. That diversity includes members and would-be members whose lives and careers may be met by inequities, whether of race, nation, region, gender, sexuality, disability, or area of research. We cannot change the world, but we can extend our mantle of responsibility through a combination of values and actions. While maintaining a strong commitment to scholarship, we must ensure our commitment to responsible scholarship that sustains values of community, leadership, and equity.

Your membership dues establish your place within the organization. If nothing else, this is your organization. We establish community with each other through shared responsibility, extending our means of communication, from #AsiaNow to the Journal of Asian Studies, to regular conferences at the regional and international levels (including the bi-yearly AAS-in-Asia), to Digital Dialogues. We are fortunate to receive support from foundations who see value in our programs and help fund our initiatives. The large foundation grants are critical for our fiscal health, but we still rely on regular and sustained support from our members. In fact, individual member support is our true mainstay—not only financially, but also socially and emotionally.

Simply put, individual support enacts commitment that creates and sustains community. This is how we join together to build a more robust future for Asian Studies scholars and professionals. This is how we further our vision for a network of scholars connecting globally through a shared interest in Asia and its many homes abroad.

If you have already donated to AAS this year, thank you very much. Every gift will help AAS continue to both sustain its current programs and develop new initiatives. In many ways, these tumultuous times and shrinking resources have forced all of us to more clearly define who we are and where our values lie. As we act upon those values, it is my hope that this includes commitments to institutions that have been important to us. I have encouraged all members of the Board of Directors to gift their recent PhD students with AAS memberships. This is a win-win for the young scholars, as well as the Association, demonstrating in concrete terms the ties and responsibilities that bind us together. Please join us in this! It would be a wonderful boost of support for the organization.

If you are able to contribute beyond membership, please see below to select a fund and make a donation. No matter which fund you choose to support or how much you can donate, know that your support directly contributes to building a truly global network for Asian Studies.

I thank you for your continued and valued support. It takes a village, and that village is indeed us.

With warm aloha,

Christine R. Yano
AAS President, 2020-2021

AAS Fund Categories

AAS Development Initiatives

The Education About Asia teaching journal is supported through the Wm. Theodore de Bary and Ainslie T. Embree Fund for Education and Outreach. The fund supports the AAS in providing affordable teaching resources as well as disseminating EAA print and online materials. The fund is named in honor of two past presidents of the AAS who were early champions of the integration of Asian Studies into the core curriculum.

The AAS Fund for International Exchange makes it possible for the Association to provide travel subsidies for active panel participants from non-high-income, non-OECD countries to attend both the AAS annual conference and the AAS-in-Asia conference.

The AAS New Initiatives Fund facilitates the Association’s exploration of new ideas and projects. Beyond its annual and AAS-in-Asia conferences, the AAS advocates for the training of new scholars and teachers, encourages the teaching of Asian languages, and advances information literacy about Asian societies and cultures. The New Initiatives Fund supports endeavors such as the AAS First Book Subvention Program.

The Fund for Young Scholars encourages young scholars to attend and present their research at AAS conferences. The fund also supports the annual AAS Dissertation Workshops.

The AAS Endowment Fund guarantees the Association’s ability to support and expand the study of Asia far into the future.

AAS Book Prizes

China and Inner Asia

  • The Gene E. Smith Book Prize for English-language scholarly books published on Inner Asia
  • The Joseph R. Levenson Book Prize for English-language non-fiction scholarly books on China
  • The Patrick D. Hanan Book Prize for translation from Chinese or Inner Asian languages into English

Northeast Asia

  • The James B. Palais Book Prize for English-language scholarly books published on Korea
  • The John Whitney Hall Book Prize for English-language scholarly books published on Japan

South Asia

  • The A.K. Ramanujan Book Prize for translations from South Asian languages into English
  • The Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize for English-language scholarly works on South Asian studies
  • The Bernard S. Cohn Book Prize for a first book on South Asia

Southeast Asia

  • The A.L. Becker Prize for translations from Southeast Asian languages into English
  • The George McT. Kahin Prize for distinguished scholarly works on Southeast Asia
  • The Harry J. Benda Book Prize for English-language scholarly non-fiction works on Southeast Asian studies
AAS Awards for Scholarship

The AAS China and Inner Asia Council’s CIAC Small Grants Program provides awards of $2,000 or less to early-career scholars. The Council encourages applications from dissertation-level graduate students, junior faculty, independent scholars, and adjunct faculty.

The Franklin R. Buchanan Prize, administered by the Committee on Teaching about Asia, is awarded to educators who develop outstanding curriculum materials relevant to the study of Asia.

The F. Hilary Conroy Award honors an outstanding panel focusing on transnational and/or transcultural issues in Asia. The panel must include presenters from diverse locations, and at least one of the presentations should focus on Northeast Asia. One panelist traveling from outside of North America will receive travel support. The conference program listings indicate the award designation.

The Short-Term Research in the History of Japanese Sexualities Grant Fund was established by a bequest from Emeritus Professor Mark McLelland and provides funding for early-career scholars to cover travel expenses on trips to Japan for research projects focused on the history of Japanese sexualities.

The AAS Legacy Society

The AAS Legacy Society is endowed through estate planning. Such bequests create a base of support for the long-term goals of the Association, such as further internationalization and diversification of the membership. We are grateful to those who have already included the AAS in their bequest intentions and hope this will inspire others to follow their lead. If you are interested in joining the AAS Legacy Society, you can find information here or you may contact Krisna Uk, Senior Advisor to the Board of Directors: Outreach and Strategic Initiatives at

Click here for a list of donors to the AAS in 2019.

**We publicly acknowledge all donors in an annual report. If you would prefer to be listed as “Anonymous” in the report, please check the box for “Donate anonymously” when making your contribution online.