The Australia-India Council has been of invaluable help in this enterprise, giving generously of time, personnel and money in the Association’s pursuit of its aims.  

EVENT details

Details of International Conference, "India, Asia and Australia: Oceanic Encounters and Exchnages" on January 27-29, 2020

Details of Planetary Futures and the Global South, IASA Bienniel Conference, Mohanlal Sukhadia University, Udaipur 16-18 January 2018

In association with:
DAAD-Global South Network, University of Tuebingen
JNU-UPE-II Project “Asian Crossroads: Indic Neighbourhoods, Global Connections,”
Project on Science and Spirituality, JNU
Samvad India Foundation, New Delhi


The 8th Biennial IASA Conference held at the Department of English, Mohanlal Sukhadia University, Udaipur took off on the 16th of Jan. 2018. Academicians from different parts of India as well as from Germany and Australia travelled to the City of Lakes to attend the event. The  Conference was inaugurated by Prof. V.K. Malhotra, Member Secretary, Indian Council of Social Science Research, New Delhi, and the keynote was given by Prof. Rakesh Mohan Joshi, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, New Delhi while Prof. G. Soral from the host University Chaired the session. During the inaugural session besides the release of the Conference Souviner  the book Debating the ‘Post’ Condition in India: Critical Vernaculars, Unauthorized Modernities, Post-Colonial Contentions by Prof. Makarand Pranjape was also released by the dignitaries.

There were fourteen technical sessions, two plenary, and one special session. The first plenary session on the second day was a panel discussion on ‘Identity, Ethics, and Rhetoric’ . Prof. Vijaya Ramaswami dealt with the issue of Tamil identity. Prof. Vyjayanti Raghavan traced the foundation, in logic, of Confucianism in the Korean context, Prof. Pradeep Trikha dealt with the shaping of the Australian short fiction during the 1960s to the 90s. The discussion modulated by Prof. Makarand Paranjape led to vibrant discussion and some very useful deductions. The second plenary session held in the Udaipur Chamber of Commerce and Industry had Prof. Anne Brewster of New South Wales University of Australia, presenting a paper on “ Roanna Gonsalves’ Fiction : The Permanent Resident”. The issue of structural violence in the context of racism in Australia was one of the important paradigms discussed by her. The special session on Indian Ocean: Culture, Geography, Security added the very important geographical dimension to the discourse of Planetary Futures. The Chairperson of the Valedictory Session Prof. B. P. Sharma, Director, Pacific Institute of Education, rightly, focused upon the need to convert the demographic dividends of the Global South into the service of the future of the planet. The chief speaker Prof. Helen Pringle of NSW University of Australia expressed her sentiments with a poem admiring the IASA activities as well as the Udaipur conference.

During the presentation of some 68 papers and the ensuing discussions some of the points made can be summed up in the following manner-

  • Identity, individualism, independence and related ethos perched on difference and uniqueness end up being DIVISIVE, whereas, collectivism,  that celebrates commonality, sharedness, and belonging leads to harmonious co-existence. Balancing individual emancipation and collectivity in a nuanced manner might indicate towards a Global future where the hegemonic structures/ the Northern dominance can be effectively challenged. How rightly the poet Sarshaar Sailani said-
    Chaman me ikhtilat-e-rang-boo se baat banati he
    Hum hi hum hen to kya hum hen
    Tum hi tum ho to kyat um ho…
  • Return to nature as reflected in the folk/tribal/indigenous/aboriginal arts, literature, culture, and epistemological systems could be the alter directions.
  • Grassroots movements could provide a much required impetus to the challenges that the Global South needs to throw in order to save the planet.
  • There is an urgent need to distinguish rhetoric from genuine discourses of concern in relation to the issues of Identity and Ethics as well as to see through the politics, hegemonies, violence embedded in ideological, cultural structures not the least those of binaries like north/south, patriarchy/feminism, civilization/primitivism, culture/nature etc.
  • Demographic dividend needs to be channelized constructively and cultivated into an asset. The planet can’t afford this to go astray to play havoc with the ‘progress’ made so far. The Globe, at the present moment, as much as at the time of writing of the poem ‘The Second Coming’, reverberates with the words of Yeats-
    Turning and turning in the widening gyre

    The best lack all conviction
    The worst are full of passionate intensity

    Surely the second coming is at hand.

Besides the business of the conference, the general body meeting of the IASA carried the goal of the forum forward by registering new life members and planning future course of action under the highly able and dynamic leadership of Prof. Makarand Paranjape. While every member of the host department was trying to do what she/he is best at, the General Secretary of IASA and the Coordinator of conference Prof. Pradeep Trikha stole the show by putting up two beautiful and delicious evenings for the entertainment, enjoyment, and enrichment of the participants. The first was a cultural eve that provided a glimpse into the regional culture. The second was a lakeside feast. Even after the valedictory on the third day the conference delegates were taken to the heart of the city, the residence of the present Maharana of Mewar in the premises of the city palace museum. There, a boat ride to Jagniwas Palace and the guided walk through the School of Art run by the Maharana Mewar Public School was probably the most fitting finale of the three day long intellectual festival. We won’t be surprised if the participants felt happily trapped throughout the three long days though we did come to know that many of them managed to squeeze out, time and again, not being able to resist the lure of the city.


India has been called the “cross-roads” of the entire region of the Indian ocean oecumene, literally on the “road to everywhere.”1 For almost every important intellectual, political, and cultural current from East to the West and from West to the East, India became the point of transition, mediation, or even fruition. This is as true of the evolution of British colonialism in Asia and Australia as it is of prior times. The question, however, is how these connections might play out in the future, but also in terms of how futures are to be imagined, designed, and executed from hereon. It is this exciting discursive terrain of future studies that this conference fouces on, with special referene to India, Australia, and the Global South.

The aim of this conference is to study some of these cross currents of Global Futures, to document available knowledge about them, explore alternative futures for Indic-Australian inter-relationships, and to create new paradigms for understanding the globalisation of both India and Australia in this light. Our main objective, then, would be to try to explore Indic-Australian connections from colonialism to global futures and begin to explore the range of ideas and processes implicit to these processes. With this view we plan to engage with the history, politics, and cultural formations of cross-connections between India, Australia, and the Global South, giving primacy to oceanic and cross-continental intellectual and cultural traffic. In addition, the conference will focus on issues such as traditional knowledge systems, spiritual and sacred practices, Indo-Australasian nationalisms, transfers of science, technology, and culture, and relations in social practices, arts, and media in the region, especially as they impact our thinking on Global Futures.

At its most ambitious, this project is about “re-presenting” India, Australia, and the Global South not just in a post-imperialistic, increasingly globalized world-system, but beyond these into systematic thinking and planning of planetary futures. The word “represent” is used here in both its commonly understood senses, as likeness, bringing to life or going back to its Latin root esse or presence, represent as making present. But every description is, necessarily, also an interpretation. So to represent Indo-Australian connections in their oceanic, global, and futures contexts would also be to reinterpret them. The other meaning of represent is to stand or speak for; to resisting others’ definitions of us, so that we, in India, Australia, and others in the Global South, speak for ourselves, taking charge of how we represent ourselves.2 Indeed, both ways of looking at Indic-Australian connections are relevant to our conference.

In our shared contexts, this might imply the constructing of new disciplinary paradigms or institutional apparatuses. It might also mean competing for legitimation in how our regions are understood or studied, finally to declare ourselves as interested parties or stake-holders in such a process of designing Global Futures. It would also implicate us in challenging other, for example, imperial representations and to offer alternatives to them. The composition of research groups, with experts from the various communities of India, Australia, and the Global South, to examine their inter-relationships, and, finally, their connections with flows in capital, culture, science and technology, along with the futures of such, would be the ultimate outcome of this conference.

Possible Panels

  1. Global Futures for India and Australia
  2. Crossroads – roots and routes in the India-Australia dialogue
  3. Global-Local knowledge flows
  4. Alternative Global South: Who’s Futures?
  5. Heritage Futures: Epistemology and Identity
  6. History and its Shadows
  7. Spiritual Pragmatics
  8. Traditional Knowledge, Sacred Practice and Spirituality
  9. Nationalisms and Beyond: The Politics of local-global interaction
  10. Hybrid Knowledge Futures: Science, culture, technology in the India-Australia context
  11. Representations- Media and the Arts – Re-Orient
  12. Research as Resistance: Voice and Optimism in a shrinking world
  13. Pathways to Meaning and Co-Creation – research collaborations across borders

Last date for the submission of Abstract:  15 October, 2017
Approval of abstracts: 15 November, 2017
Last date for the submission of Conference Paper: 10 December, 2017

Registration Fee:
Foreign Delegates (with accommodation): USD500
Foreign Delegates (without accommodation): USD 80
Indian Outstation Delegates (with accommodation): INR 5000
Indian Delegates (without accommodation): INR 2500
Special discounted fee for students (without accommodation): INR 1000

General Secretary, IASA and Conference Coordinator,
Professor Pradeep Trikha, Mohanlal Sukhadia University, Udaipur:
Click here for Brochure


1. In her path-breaking study, Before European Hegemony: The World System A.D. 1250-1350 (New York: Oxford University Press. 1991), Janet Abu-Lughod, not only gave a detailed description of the larger Indian oceanic geo-political neighbourhood before European hegemony, but decribed India thus.

2. These two meanings of represent have been encapsulated as “portrait” and “proxy” by noted post-colonial critic, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak in her much cited essay “Can the Subaltern Speak?” Spivak, following Marx, invokes the German words, darstellung and vertretung to suggest these two meanings respectively.

Details of Meet the Authors Session at Sri Venkateswara College, at 11 a.m. 19 January 2015

Speakers: Meet Australian Writers, Ali Cobby Eekermann, Lionel Fogarty and Christos Tsiolkas
Venue: Seminar Hall, Sri Venkateswara College, Benito Juarez Marg, Dhaula Kuan, New Delhi
Time : 19 January 2015 at 11 a.m.

Details of IASA DISCUSSION FORUM SERIES: Direction of Rape Laws in Australia : Key Lessons for India, 17 February, 2014

Speakers: Prof Simon Bronitt and Dr Ashutosh Mishra, Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security (CEPS), Griffith University, Brisbane.
Venue: Room number 212, Committee Room, School of Language, Literature and Culture Studies (SLL&CS), JNU
Time : 10:30 am to 12 noon

Details of 3rd International Conference of IASA, Eastern Region

Topic: Borders and Beyond: Cultural Transactions: between Australia and India
Date: 22 January- 25 January 2013, Kolkata
Keynote Speaker: Professor Bruce Charles Scates (Monash University)

Call for Papers

All conference abstracts should be received by 15 October, 2012. The abstracts will be reviewed by a team of experts from Monash University and the Eastern Region of the Indian Association for the Study of Australia. The decision of the review committee will be emailed to the participants of the conference.

Proposals (250-300 words) should be sent via email, by 1 September, 2012 to,

Proposals can be submitted through the IASA, Eastern Region’s website:

Download event details [+]

Details of AIC Australian Studies Fellowships

Australia – India Council announces every year the “Australian Studies Fellowships for Indian University Teaching Staff and Postgraduates”.

The application form can be downloaded from the web-link:

The Fellowships are announced each year around December–January and the last date for applications is usually sometime in February.

Please forward information about the AIC Fellowships to your colleagues/students.

Details of IASA-Delhi Conference-2012

Sixth Biennial International Conference of the Indian Association for the Study of Australia (IASA) from January 19 to 21, 2012:

Australia and India Now: Market Economy, Ethics and Empowerment.

Economics can not be free of moral values and therefore can not be neutral where poverty and suffering are involved, its claim to being a ‘moral science nonetheless. That imperative perhaps is a parameter also of a just world order.

While the second decade of the 21st century has seen nations getting out of the financial crisis or at least hopeful of being out of it soon, there continue to be perennial challenges of, at random, governance, inflation, ecology, rising prices, not only of petroleum products and gold sovereign, but also of essential commodities as well. It almost as if the civilization floating on a crisis experiences small temporally local distress situations that seem to give way to one another. Is our contemporary world like an obstacle race athlete ordained to move from one crisis to another. So there are issues to be handled foremost among them being the vagaries of and the fights for markets. In dealing with these the boundaries between East and West, strong and weak economies, rich and poor, good and bad governance become fuzzy in the overriding play of power and power groups.

Nations address these challenges in their own different ways. Not only the commercial or the economic but also the cultural and philosophical responses vary – and matter. Literatures embody these responses and hold important insights for global communication and communion. The world of learning and scholarship provides the ground for new approaches and new ideas and new modes of negotiations within and beyond nations. Often the issues are also addressed bilaterally, comparatively, between nations that share a commonality of understanding and vision.

At the Sixth Biennial International Conference of the Indian Association for the Study of Australia (IASA) to be held in Delhi in January 2012, we invite scholars and academics to address these wider issues with a focus on the overarching theme ‘Australia and India Now: Market Economy, Ethics and Empowerment’. Australia and India, as we know, share a good volume of trade, of goods, and now of ideas as well..

Australia is India’s sixth largest and India is Australia’s fifth largest trading partner. Besides, the two market economies have commonalities such as simultaneous increase in interest rates in early 2011. It is a shared trend as against the economies of United States, Europe and Japan which have low interest rates for propping up of their economies. The Australian dollar too has touched comparable levels with the US dollar. The convergences and divergences of the two economies, their functioning, policy making, management, expansion and consolidation are issues for economists, planners, bureaucrats, cultural diplomats, philosophers, scientists, artists, law makers and people from all walks of life. How does the world of letters cognize these issues that touch the lives of live, be it the issue of mining revenue in Australia or 2G spectrum in India? In the perspective of the above and related issues the IASA Conference in Delhi in collaboration with Pondicherry University invites abstracts on the sub-themes as identified below:

  • Literature and the Arts
  • Contemporary Australia
  • Globalisation and the State
  • Foreign Policy/Diplomacy
  • National Security
  • Society and Development
  • Human Rights
  • Environment and Sustainable Development
  • Australia and India in International Politics
  • Internationalisation of Education
  • Science and Technology

Calendar for submission of papers:

Last date for submission of abstracts:31 July 2011
Communication of acceptance:10 October 2011
Final papers to be submitted:15 December 2011
Conference Venue:The United Service Institution Of India (USI)
Rao Tula Ram Marg, New Delhi-110010

Conference Fees:

For Indian participants:

Rs. 1000.00 for members
Rs. 1500.00 for non-members
Rs. 500.00 for students

For Foreign participants:

AUD 150.00 for members
AUD 180.00 for non-members

Please note the Registration fee does not include accommodation costs.

Accommodation options:

Standard Single OccupancyRs. 2200.00 (Rs 2600.00 for two)
Standard Double OccupancyRs. 2600.00
Deluxe Single OccupancyRs. 3100.00
Deluxe Double OccupancyRs. 3500.00
Deluxe ApartmentRs. 6000.00 (for four)
Super Deluxe ApartmentRs. 7700.00 (for six)

Tariff includes Buffet Breakfast and Tea/Coffee in rooms and Wi-Fi service)

Membership fees of Rs. 250/- and taxes of about 15% are extra.
Check-in is 1 p.m. and check-out 12 p.m.

JNU Guest House


Some limited accommodation may be possible at JNU Guest House at about Rs. 400.00 for a single room and Rs. 800.00 for a double room.

Members can book through IASA. Please book early as accommodation is subject to availability.

Communications may be addressed on e-mail to Prof. Santosh Sareen, President, IASA, 6/10 Sarva Priya Vihar, New Delhi-110016, India.

Please e-mail a copy to Prof. D. Gopal, General Secretary, IASA, Faculty of Political Science, School of Social Sciences, Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi and Adjunct Professor, Institute of Hawke Research Studies, University of South Australia, Adelaide.