The India China Institute Announces International Research Seminar, Shifting Geographies of Expertise and Policymaking

ICI invites applications from researchers and practitioners trained in relevant social science disciplines and professional with an emphasis in work interrogates the fields of public health; urban planning; social policy; and environment and sustainability


June 22, 2021, New York -- The India China Institute (ICI) announces an international research seminar, “Shifting Geographies of Expertise and Policymaking” on the changing institutional, cultural, and epistemological contours in the relationship between expertise and political authority in India and China and beyond. 

In the last two decades, relationships between experts and policymaking have been transformed in both India and China. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic is perhaps the most vivid of many instances that illuminate these shifting institutional, cultural, and epistemological contours. An increasing reliance on technical expertise for governance is juxtaposed alongside changing demands on what constitutes as relevant expertise. This has led to the formation of new epistemic communities and infrastructures for knowledge production in conjunction with novel institutional frameworks for mobilizing expertise for policymaking. In this seminar, ICI hopes to explore debates over the complex and often contested relationships between expertise and political authority.

ICI invites applications from researchers and practitioners trained in relevant social science disciplines (such as political science, science and technology studies, sociology, geography, and anthropology) or in professional programs (such as design, public policy, and others). ICI is especially interested in those whose work interrogates the fields of public health; urban planning; social policy (education, housing, welfare); environment and sustainability who will address questions about the politics of knowledge production and how they inform policymaking. The seminar hopes to shed light on the shifting implicit and explicit contracts between epistemic authority and political authority at various scales: local, national, regional, and global.

The research seminar will meet twice a month on zoom from October 2021 to May 2022, with an in-person workshop tentatively planned for March 2022. Each participant will be expected to present their research in one of the seminar sessions, actively participate in all discussions, attend the in-person workshop, and contribute a research paper to an edited volume that will be produced at the end of the seminar.

Application Process
Interested applicants are invited to fill out this form and provide the following:

  • Updated CV
  • Proposal (no longer than 2,000 words) stating the central question, methodology of the project, and how it will make a significant contribution
  • A curated bibliography (no longer than 1,000 words) that will help us understand your (inter)disciplinary approach
  • Names and contact information for two references

The application deadline is August 10, 2021. 

Visit the India China Institute website for more information. For additional questions, please email

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