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Emerging Asias

Acknowledging Los Angeles’ and California’s location on the Pacific Rim, and their increasing interconnections with Asia, Eric Sheppard’s 2013 presidential plenary session will take up the question of “Emerging Asias.” This title references three aspects of Asia today: Its rapid (re)emergence as a center of the global economy; its enormous diversity as a region (Asia being a European geopolitical construct designating the land masses east of Europe, rather than a homogeneous region); and, within the heterogeneous sub-regions of Asia, the expanding differences in the livelihood possibilities of those who have come to live prosperously and those who live precariously. This session is conceived as a provocation to US geographers: To be paying more attention to Asia, and to its distinctive perspectives and voices. Speakers will be invited from the US and Asia, with expertise in different sub-regions. The AAG presidential panel session will anchor this thematic track in Los Angeles. As a featured theme, of course, “Emerging Asias” should not be restricted to human geographic processes: Research examining Asian biophysical and nature-society processes also is encouraged.