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Giving to CSEAS

Gifts to CSEAS help support events and programming that promote attention at UC Berkeley to the countries and peoples of Southeast Asia and encourages the growth of Southeast Asian Studies on campus.

Gifts may be directed in a variety of ways, such as –

  • to support CSEAS public programs,
  • to develop a lecture series or distinguished scholar program,
  • to fund summer research projects by graduate and undergraduate students
  • to fund student and postdoctoral fellowships for students from the U.S. and from Southeast Asia,
  • to support visiting scholars from Southeast Asia
  • to support language instruction
  • to promote new research initiatives
  • to establish an endowed chair for faculty

All gifts help CSEAS build on scarce resources to ensure that Southeast Asia Studies remains a vibrant part of the academic life at UC Berkeley.

Special Initiatives


CSEAS has established some country-specific funds for donors who would like to direct their support towards activities and programs focused on a particular country in Southeast Asia. Long-standing funds exist for Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam, while new funds have recently been established for Cambodia and Thailand. Each fund has a direct link listed on the CSEAS Give to Cal gateway, or donations can be mailed to CSEAS, with a note highlighting their destination country fund and purpose.

Indonesian Studies

Indonesian Studies at UC Berkeley has a distinguished history that features a number of prominent scholars over the decades, such as Clive Day, Clifford Geertz and Daniel Lev. The Indonesia Fund itself grew out of donations given to CSEAS in 2001 in memory of the late John Holdridge, former Ambassador to Singapore (1975-78) and Indonesia (1983-86).

Currently, the campus is home to several faculty with long-standing research interests in Indonesia including Nancy Lee Peluso (Henry J. Vaux Distinguished Professor of Forest Policy in the College of Natural Resources), Ben Brinner (Professor of Music), Sylvia Tiwon (Associate Professor of South and Southeast Asian Studies), and Jeffrey Hadler (Associate Professor of South and Southeast Asian Studies). In addition, the Department of Music provides a home to Gamelan Sari Raras, the Javanese gamelan ensemble directed by Midiyanto, and a Balinese gamelan ensemble, under the director of Prof. Ben Brinner and Dr. Lisa Gold. Both ensembles perform regularly during the year, with classes offered also in the fall and spring semesters.

As part of its Indonesian Studies Initiative, CSEAS is seeking to secure donor support for a number of Indonesia-related programs, including establishing an endowed Chair in Indonesian Studies to support faculty research and course development, funding fellowships for graduate students from Indonesia to pursue degree programs at UC Berkeley, and promoting academic exchange between Indonesian universities and UC Berkeley through support for short-term visiting scholars and for conferences and workshops.

Philippines Studies

UC Berkeley has had intimate ties to the Philippines for more than a century, due to the connections forged by American colonial administrators in the Philippines who later served the campus as faculty and administrators. These figures include David Barrows, UC Berkeley political scientist and later President of the University of California from 1919 to 1923, political scientist Bernard Moses, anthropologist Alfred Kroeber, and Robert Sproul, President of the University of California from 1930 to 1958. The Bancroft Library on campus holds sizeable archival collections of the papers of many of these men, which are a magnet for researchers interested in the history of the American colonial period in Philippine history from around the world.

CSEAS has established the Philippines Fund to reflect this history, and to respond to the new energy developed on campus in recent years seen in the growth in numbers of Philippine-American students enrolled at Berkeley, and from the teaching and research of CSEAS core faculty Prof. Catherine Ceniza Choy (Ethnic Studies), and Philippine literature specialist and Filipino language instructor Dr. Joi Barrios-LeBlanc (South & Southeast Asian Studies). The primary goal of the fund is to secure funding support for events programming, academic conferences, and field training opportunities for graduate students.

Vietnamese Studies

Vietnamese Studies has been growing rapidly at UC Berkeley since the 1990s, with sizeable enrollments seen in the graduate and undergraduate courses on Vietnamese language, literature, society and history offered on campus. The UC Education Abroad Program (EAP) in Vietnam also continues to maintain strong student commitment from undergraduates throughout the University of California system.

Specific attention to Vietnam at UC Berkeley is maintained through the efforts of CSEAS, which in particular serves as the administrative center for the Journal of Vietnamese Studies, an academic journal devoted to publishing new academic research about Vietnam. This journal is published by the University of California Press, and received crucial start-up support from the Henry Luce Foundation, with supplemental support from the Larry L. Hillblom Foundation, when it was established in 2006, under the direction of CSEAS core faculty, Prof. Peter Zinoman (History).

In line with this overall growth in attention to Vietnamese Studies on campus, CSEAS launched the Vietnam Fund in 2005 to spearhead new initiatives in this field. The main goal of the Vietnam Fund is to establish an endowment that will support the expansion for Vietnamese Studies at Berkeley over the long term, including funding to maintain the Journal of Vietnamese Studies, to expand Vietnam-related events programming on campus, and to support graduate student research activities and field training in Vietnam.