January 9-15, 2012

What: The Asian Institute will grant travel awards to three (3) students to travel to Taipei, Taiwan to be observers of the Taiwan presidential and legislative elections on January 14, 2012. Students will act as ambassadors of the University of Toronto and the Asian Institute. Each award will be $2,000.

Why: Timed to coincide with the 2012 legislative and presidential elections, this field trip is a research opportunity for students to experience Taiwanese democracy during a unique, once in a lifetime election where gender paradigms, the influence of media, and international consequences will come to a head in real time. Students will have the opportunity to interview prominent figures in Taiwan, media outlets and Taiwanese women and students to gain inside knowledge on how gender issues and social media have been shaping this election as well as Taiwan as a whole, and to synthesize knowledge gained in the classroom through first-hand experience.

When: Students will check into Pearson International Airport no later than 10 pm on Saturday, January 7, 2012, to depart at 12:50 am on Sunday, January 8, 2012. Participants will return to Toronto on January 15, 2012. Students will be responsible for their own missed work, and there will be pre-departure meetings during the exam period that successful applicants will be required to attend.

Eligibility: Students enrolled in Asian Institute courses with cumulative minimum GPAs of 3.3 are eligible to apply.

Project outputs: Participants will create a documentary video on their research, live-blog on the Asia-Pacific reader’s website, present a collaborative paper to an academic conference entitled “In/Secure Intimacies: Inter-Asia Migrations in the Shadow of the State” in March, collaborate with Fairchild Television’s Media Focus program to produce a story, and make an Asian Institute presentation at the Munk School of Global Affairs.

Costs: Costs will be covered by each student. Students will be expected to fundraise an amount to be determined, but approximated at no more than $500. Students may also need to supplement their own travel-related costs.

How to Apply: Applicants are asked to provide (i) a CV or resume no more than two (2) pages (ii) a statement of purpose no longer than one page single spaced and (iii) an unofficial transcript of complete academic history (ROSI print out or screen shot)

Deadline: Applications are due on Wednesday, December 7 at 12 pm (noon), emailed to ai.asianinstitute@utoronto.ca in a single word or pdf document, or by hard copy to Jessica Lam in Room 228N at the Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place). The subject line of email submissions should read “Taiwan Election Field Trip.”

Questions: Please contact Eileen Lam (eileen.lam@utoronto.ca) with inquiries.