Southeast Asian Geography Association 2008 International Conference (SEAGA 2008)
Theme: Transformations and Embodiments in Southeast Asian Geographies: Changing Environments, People and Cultural Groups, Institutions and Landscapes
About the Conference
Fish disappears from stressed coral reefs as the Philippine government suspends some shady business transactions and deals with terrorism. Cambodian officials hope to build more ties with Vietnam as Angkor Wat tourism and local officials find ways to protect this heritage site and make the industry sustainable. Martial Law is continuously imposed in some parts of Thailand to crack down on drug dealers and other illegal activities. In the meantime, not much is known on the challenges that are faced by thousands of monks as they clamor for more democratic spaces in Myanmar.
Natural cycles, environmental fluctuations and human activities, which are intricately woven around economic, cultural, environmental and political concerns, have always characterized the trajectories of transformations of the world that we live in. Together, they have influenced the directions and altered the pathways, trends and outcomes of earth cycles and environmental vacillations. The usual reversible or irreversible outcomes are increased rates of soil erosion, desertification, widespread deforestation, habitat loss, species extinction, and pervasive water, air and land pollution. The short- and long-term manifestations of earth systems’ modifications are borne by the numerous environmental landscapes and human societies belonging to diverse cultural groups. The economic and political circumstances of some privileged cultural groups buffer them from the negative consequences of these ecosystems’ transformations. The under-represented and more economically marginal ones often lack the resources to buffer themselves from the negative impacts of environmental transformations and, thus, suffer pervasively and repeatedly. Moreover, they do not get the assistance of institutions which are mandated to address the complexities of their problematic everyday conditions. However, these institutions are also characterized by problems such as misallocation of limited resources, mismanagement of development programs, and in some cases, insensitivity to the primary and basic concerns of the underprivileged cultural groups. In the midst of intertwined and globalizing economic and political processes, the present and future conditions of their natural environments and social, cultural and political landscapes change. These corresponding trails and trajectories of environmental changes and the associated and resulting human conditions are widely observable in Southeast Asia. They are intricately embodied in the daily experiences of the indigenous peoples, rice paddy farmers, sidewalk vendors, housewives, schoolchildren, entrepreneurs and young urban professionals of Thailand, Vietnam, East Timor, Malaysia, Singapore, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, the Philippines, Brunei and Indonesia. They are closely woven in the everyday survival conditions of informal settlers and interlaced in the economic circumstances of upbeat information technology specialists in Manila, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hanoi, Jakarta, Bangkok, Phnom Penh, Bandar Seri Begawan, Vientiane and Rangoon. They define the order, stability and direction of the evolving economic processes, political struggles, cultural expressions and social relationships that may have local, regional and global significance and repercussions. Meanwhile, it remains that the processes and changes have unequal impacts among human societies and environmental systems in different parts of the world. Nevertheless, as members of humanity, we will altogether suffer the consequences of these local, regional and global transformations in the very near future.
The Southeast Asian Geography Association (SEAGA) is a scientific and educational society that was set up in 1990 by a group of geographers to organize the inaugural SEAGA Conference in Brunei Darussalam. Its members share interests in the theory, methods, and practice of geography and geographic education. As of February 2006, the association is formally registered with Singapore’s Registrar of Societies (see www.seaga.co.nr/).
Call for Papers
The Program Committee invites conference presentations from geographers from Southeast Asia and other parts of the world, affiliates of academic societies, officials and practitioners from public and private institutions, and independent scholars from the different fields in the social and natural sciences who are undertaking geographic studies and other researches that are related to the 2008 Conference theme. The Committee encourages creative and innovative paper presentations. At the same time in addition to panels, formats including thematic workshops, roundtable discussions, and other departures from traditional formal paper presentations are encouraged. The Committee particularly welcomes interdisciplinary or border-crossing proposals that enrich the various approaches in undertaking historical, chronological, geographic and other studies. Young scholars are especially encouraged to participate
Proposals should be submitted to the 2008 SEAGA Conference Secretariat via email ([email protected]) by January 14, 2008 (for abstracts of organized panels) and by January 21, 2008 (for individual paper and poster abstracts). A proposal must include a 150-word abstract of the panel/paper as well as the name, affiliation, and contact details of the proponent. Please use the prescribed Abstract Submission Form. Panels that will be organized by potential chairs will be given priority but individual paper proposals will also be given equal consideration. Topics for paper proposals/panels include the following: environment, gender and migration, hazards and mitigation, development and sustainability, culture and politics, geographic education and urban geography. Other relevant topics may be proposed.