The Australasian Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Conference 2017

10 – 12 July 2017
9.00am to 5.00pm
Deakin Downtown

The 2017 conference of the Australasian Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy (ASACP) aims to provide a broad intellectual forum for academics and postgraduates working in comparative philosophy and Asian philosophical traditions.

Event details

ASACP is a professional society of researchers and thinkers on the frameworks, ideas and approaches of different traditions in Asia. We believe that the Asian traditions of thought hold significant insights that continue to have contemporary relevance. We seek to explain these insights, and to engage with Western and continental European philosophical traditions so as to gain a richer and more diverse understanding of life, the earth, environment and spirituality.

The ASACP is affiliated with the Australasian Association of Philosophy (AAP) and has previously held conferences in conjunction with other academic societies and institutions, including the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy (SACP), the East-West Center at the University of Hawaii, and the International Society for Chinese Philosophy (ISCP). The ASACP is committed to holding biennial conferences. It also has a long-standing partnership with the peer-reviewed journal, Sophia: International Journal of Philosophy and Traditions.

Visit the ASACP website

Download the ASACP Conference Program

Call for papers - extended

The conference committee invites submissions of proposals for papers in all areas
of Asian and Comparative Philosophy.

Proposals for papers and panels should be submitted via email to Dr Leesa Davis with 'ASACP 2017' in the subject line. Paper proposals should include:

  • title 
  • abstract (150-200 words)
  • speaker’s contact details 
  • institutional affiliation (if any).

The closing date for proposals is Thursday 1 June 2017

Abstract submission

Stream or general program

  • Main program: Asian and Comparative
  • Nonduality in Asian and Western Thought
  • Engaging Asian Philosophical Traditions: why it is important to philosophy
  • Methodology in Comparative Philosophy
  • Comparative East Asian and South Asian Traditions.

Graduate student essay prize

The ASACP 2017 Conference includes an essay competition for enrolled graduate students attending the conference. Essays should focus on any topic within Asian and/or Comparative philosophy. 

Applicants are encouraged to address the conference streams:

  • Nonduality in Asian and Western Thought
  • Engaging Asian Philosophical traditions - why it is important to Philosophy
  • Methodology in Comparative Philosophy
  • Comparative East Asian and South Asian Philosophies.

Essays should be no more than 10 pages (or 4,000 words) and submitted via email (preferably in PDF format) to A/Prof. Karyn Lai and Dr Peter Wong by Saturday 15 April 2017.


  • First prize $600
  • Second prize $400
  • Plus three commendation prizes of $250 each.

Please note:

  • only conference attendees will be eligible for prizes
  • the committee reserves the right not to award any or all of the prizes.

Keynote speakers

Professor David R. Loy

David R. Loy is Professor of Buddhist Philosophy and Comparative Philosophy. In addition to various visiting professorships, he was professor in the Faculty of International Studies, Bunkyo University, Japan and the Besl Professor of Ethics/Religion and Society at Cincinnati’s Xavier University. 

Professor Loy has published numerous scholarly papers and popular articles, and is the author of over a dozen books on comparative philosophy and social ethics. His publications include: Nonduality: A Study in Comparative Philosophy; Money, Sex, War, Karma: Notes for a Buddhist Revolution; The Great Awakening: A Buddhist Social Theory; The World Is Made of Stories; A Buddhist Response to the Climate Emergency; and most recently, A New Buddhist Path: Enlightenment, Evolution, and Ethics in the Modern World. 

Professor Loy is one of the founding members of the new Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center, near Boulder, Colorado and a teacher in the Sanbo Kyodan tradition of Japanese Buddhism.

Professor Jin Y. Park

Jin Y. Park is Professor of Philosophy and Religion, and Founding Director of the Asian Studies Program at American University. Professor Park specialises in East Asian Buddhism (especially Zen and Huayan Buddhism), Buddhist ethics, Buddhist philosophy of religion, Buddhist-postmodern comparative philosophy, and modern East Asian philosophy. She employs Buddhist tradition to engage with contemporary issues with a special focus on gender, justice, and ethics. Her research on modern East Asian Buddhist philosophy examines the dawn of philosophy in East Asia and the East-West encounter in that context. 

Professor Park currently serves as President of the North American Korean Philosophy Association and Vice President of the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy. Her books include Women and Buddhist Philosophy (2017), Reflections of a Zen Buddhist Nun (2014), Makers of Modern Korean Buddhism (2010), Merleau-Ponty and Buddhism (co-edited with Gereon Kopf, 2009), Buddhism and Postmodernity (2008), and Buddhisms and Deconstructions (2006).

Professor John Powers

John Powers is a Research Professor in the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation at Deakin University and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities. He is the author of sixteen books and more than ninety articles and book chapters. His publications include Dignāga's Investigation of the Percept: A Philosophical Legacy in India and Tibet (with Douglas Duckworth, David Eckel, Jay Garfield, Sonam Thakchoe and Geshe Yeshes Thabkhas; New York: Oxford University Press, 2017) and A Bull of a Man: Images of Masculinity, Sex, and the Body in Indian Buddhism (Harvard University Press, 2009).

Paper titles

David R. Loy
Paper title: Preparing for Something that May Never Happen: The Nonduality of Ends and Means
Respondent: Dr Bronwyn Finnigan (Australian National University) 

Jin Y. Park
Paper title: Derrida and Buddhism
Respondent: Professor Jack Reynolds (Deakin University) 

John Powers
Paper title: Cross Cultural Philosophy at the Crossroads: Where Do We Go From Here?
Respondent: Professor Jay L. Garfield (Smith College) via SKYPE

The Max Charlesworth Memorial Lecture

Professor Max Charlesworth (1925-2014), AO, FAHA, was the Foundation Dean of the School of Humanities at Deakin University and one of the great figures in Australasian philosophy. To honour and celebrate Professor Charlesworth's contribution to Deakin University, and to the Humanities in Australia, Deakin hosts a biennial lecture in his name.

The 2017 Max Charlesworth Lecture will be included in the ASACP 2017 program. It will be given by keynote speaker Professor David Loy on 11 July 2017 from 4.00pm – 6.30pm. This will also be a free public lecture.

Registration fees

Early Bird (before Friday 19 May 2017)
$180 Full | $150 Students/unwaged

General (after Friday 19 May 2017) 
$220 Full | $180 Students/unwaged

Day rate (not including conference dinner)
$100 Full | $60 Students/unwaged

Registration for the full three days includes the conference dinner.

register now

Key information

Date and time

Monday 10 – Wednesday 12 July 2017
9.00am - 5.00pm


Deakin Downtown
Level 12, Tower 2
727 Collins Street
Melbourne VIC 3008

Contact details

Dr Leesa Davis
Email Dr Davis