The following is a transcript of the remarks by outgoing ISA President Harvey Starr introducing incoming President Amitav Acharya, Toronto, 27 March 2014
AMITAV ACHARYA is Professor of International Relations and the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance, at the School of International Service, American University. I am honored to present the next President of ISA as a scholar of many “firsts”—especially as ISA’s first president from the Global South.
Born in India, he received his BA in Political Science from Utkal University, his MA in Political Science from Jawaharlal Nehru University, and his Ph.D. in International Politics, from Murdoch University in Perth, Australia.
In addition to being ISA’s first Global South president-- in an era of growing globalization-- he is perhaps its most cosmopolitan. His previous academic positions before American University were at:
-- University of Bristol in the UK
-- Nanyang Technological University in Singapore
-- York University in Canada
-- John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard
-- and the National University of Singapore
He has also held around 30 visiting positions around the world—to save time just let me note some of the countries (not he institutions) involved : South Africa, Singapore, Thailand, Hungary, Vietnam, Canada, Belgium, the UK (alright—at St Catherine’s College, Oxford), the US, Malaysia, and Australia.
He has provided extensive professional service to many organizations in many countries—but of greatest interest here is his term as ISA vice-president in 2008-09, and his role in 2003-04 as Founding President of the Asian Political and International Studies Association.
Amitav’s areas of specialization are global governance, comparative regionalism, Asian security, Southeast Asia, and IR theory. He is one of the top specialists in the world on the international relations of Southeast Asia and ASEAN. His work has been influential in shaping the debate over normative change in world politics-- especially in conceptualizing the role of regional and local actors, and in proposing the possibility of creating a more inclusive and global discipline.
The author of NINE books, and editor of 17 others, he has written over 90 journal articles and book chapters, plus numerous reports, commentaries, and conference papers. He has received multiple awards for scholarship and teaching at his institutions, and has received numerous grants including major funding from the Ford Foundation and the SASAKAWA Foundation in Japan. He has a world-wide presence through various media: for example, asa regular commentator on BBC TV and World service Radio, CNN International, National Public Radio, Al-Jazeera TV, CNBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Radio, among others. He has an extensive list of media interviews, and has written over 20 op ed pieces for newspapers and other media outlets around the world.
Of his many invited talks and keynotes addresses, perhaps he is proudest of his April 14, 2011 address, at the invitation of its president, to the United Nations General Assembly in New York on the subject of human security.
A man of infinite talents—and energy (I’m exhausted just thinking about all this)—Amitav Archaya.