Subject: This Month in Mongolian Studies - February 2022

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In this Issue:

ACMS Announcements 

ACMS Sponsored Programs and Events

Vacancies and Fellowships

Grants, Scholarships, Calls for Papers

New Resources

Other News and Events

Recent Books

This Month in Mongolian Studies is a monthly listing of selected academic activities, resources and other material related to Mongolia. This list is based on information the ACMS has received and is presented as a service to its members. If you would like to submit information to be included in next month's issue please contact the ACMS at
This publication is supported in part by memberships.  Please consider becoming a member of the ACMS, or renewing your membership by visiting our website at

Thank you!

ACMS Announcements, News and Media References

ACMS Earns a “Give with Confidence” 100/100 Rating From Charity Navigator!

We’re excited to share some news! The American Center for Mongolian Studies has been evaluated by Charity Navigator through their revolutionary Encompass Rating System and received a 100 out of 100 rating! The Encompass Rating System is a comprehensive evaluation tool that analyzes nonprofit performance based on four key indicators. Charity Navigator’s third-party accreditation validates our organization’s operational excellence.

This milestone achievement for ACMS couldn’t have happened without you and your support. Thank you for being part of our family as contributors, funders, and volunteers. Your trust in us is what makes the difference to us and the community we serve.

You can find our Charity Navigator Encompass rating here and learn more about Charity Navigator and the Encompass Rating System at

Thank you for being an integral part of our mission!

ACMS 2022 Fellowship Deadlines Approaching!

The application deadlines for our 2022 fellowships, namely on field research, summer language program, and library fellowships, are approaching. Depending on the COVID-19 situation, the fellows may be expected to defer their research to the following year even if accepted.

ACMS Field Research Fellowship Program provides awards of up $4000 to US citizen students and/or university faculty to conduct academic field research in Mongolia between May and October. The fellowship is supported with funding from the US Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs through a grant by the Council of American Overseas Research Centers. Deadline for receipt of complete applications: February 15, 2022. (Download PDF Flyer)

ACMS Library Fellowship Program provides US citizens who are advanced graduate students or faculty in library science or related fields with up to $4000 to conduct short-term projects and/or research in Mongolia between May and October. This program helps support the development of the ACMS research library through specific defined projects designed to enhance the collection content and resource availability. The fellowship is supported with funding from the US Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs through a grant by the Council of American Overseas Research Centers. Deadline for receipt of complete applications: February 15, 2022. (Download PDF Flyer)

ACMS Intensive Mongolian Language Program. Students and scholars are invited to enroll in an eight week Intermediate Intensive Mongolian Language Program at the ACMS in Ulaanbaatar, from June 6 to August 5, 2022. The focus of this program is to provide students with an opportunity to enhance their communicative competence through systematic improvement of reading, writing, listening and speaking skills, in an authentic environment. Some full and partial fellowships are available to cover the cost of tuition, which is $2,000. Deadline for receipt of applications: March 1, 2022. (Download PDF Flyer)

Mongolia Field School is accepting applications!

The Mongolia Field School will offer 5 courses in summer 2022 on-site in Mongolia examining key topics such as Climate Change, Buddhism, Public Health, Sustainable Mining, and the Literature and Music of Mongolia.These courses offered over 9-18 days in two summer sessions provide a unique educational travel opportunity led by international and Mongolian university faculty.

The courses are open to a diverse range of participants, including undergraduate and graduate students, teachers and life-long learners, and offer an opportunity to experience learning and travel guided by academic experts in Ulaanbaatar and the beautiful Mongolian countryside.

  1. Word and Sound in Mongolian Culture (June 20 - 29)
  2. Climate Change and Herding: Incontrovertible Warning Signs and Local Responses (June 20 - July 3)
  3. Mongolian Buddhism, Nature, and Conservation (June 20 - July 7)
  4. Climate Change and Public Health: What does climate change mean for the people of Mongolia? (June 20 - July 7)
  5. Environment, Humans, and Mining in Northern Mongolia (July 25 - August 12)
A significant number of scholarships of up to $2,000 are available thanks to the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation and other donors, with awards based on need, diversity, and merit. Priority deadline for receipt of complete applications: March 1, 2022. Regular application deadline: April 30, 2022.

"Global Perspectives in Water" Free Online Course Starts Feb 14

Students and faculty at the University of Washington Bothell (USA) are partnering with ACMS to host an introductory short course to learn more about challenges with managing water in both the US and Mongolia. The course will focus on topics of wastewater, the damming of rivers, and changes in groundwater/lakes in both places. The course will cover both the basic background science of water flow, pollution, and ecology and the ways scientists investigate these challenges. The course will include recorded background lectures, posted reading and video materials and live discussions with both US and Mongolian scientists sharing some their expertise and interest in water as well as the complexity of studying such an important resource.

The short course is free and open to any learner from the US, Mongolia or globally. It will run from 14 February to 7 March with interactions in discussion boards, as well as posted videos and a live call each week in Zoom.

Introducing Our Media Channel Intern!

The American Center for Mongolian Studies is pleased to announce the recruitment of a new Media Channel intern, Miss Cora Smith, who is an undergraduate student at Kent State University.

Cora Smith is an International Relations major with a minor in Political Science and a TEFL Certificate. At her current position, she'll be leading the growth of our YouTube channel and improving accessibility and performance analytics.

We have some interesting projects set up and more internships planned for different programs, so if you or anyone you know is interested, please stay tuned to our website and social media channels!
ACMS Sponsored Programs and Events
Please note that our VSS programming is alternating monthly between Mongolian and English as part of our larger plan to create inclusive and accessible discourse. February events will be held in Mongolian.
We are pleased to announce that the "Соёлын өв цуврал хэлэлцүүлэг" (Cultural Heritage Panel) series continues this year under the title of "Соёлын өв цуврал семинар" (Cultural Heritage Colloquium). The very first event was a guest expert talk, titled “Digital transformation: Lessons in governance, scale, and technologies” on January 28th, 10 PM ULAT. Our guest speaker was Dr. Ariana French, the director of Digital Technology at American Museum of Natural History. The talk was the first part of the new and revised Cultural Heritage Discussion series, now retitled Cultural Heritage Colloquium. The expert talk has been interpreted from the English presentation into Mongolian, but the main language of the colloquium will be Mongolian.

The talk drew 33 attendants into the Zoom room, and over 110 views on the immediate Facebook live stream.

Moving ahead, there is a panel and a workshop still pending to be organized under the theme of this quarter, which is Museum Digitization.

Dr. Sender Dovchin, Associate Professor/Director of Research at Curtin University, presented at our next Virtual Speaker Series about "The ordinariness of linguistic diversity in post-socialist Mongolia" on Wed, Jan 26, 9am EST | 10pm ULAT. The discussion was in English and will soon be uploaded to ACMS YouTube channel with English subtitles. However, the full livestream is also available on the ACMS Facebook page.
PhD Candidate Daigengna Duoer (UC Santa Barbara) presented "Embodying Otherness: Religion, Colonialism, and the Story of a Japanese Intelligence Agent under Mongolian Buddhist Disguise" on Mon, Jan 31, 9am EST | 10pm ULAT. The discussion was in English and will soon be uploaded to ACMS YouTube channel with English subtitles. However, the full livestream is also available on the ACMS Facebook page.

Vacancies and Fellowships

Deputy Resident Country Director, MCA-Mongolia

The Deputy Resident Country Director (DRCD) supports the Resident Country Director (RCD) in leading the implementation of compact investments in Mongolia and providing ongoing oversight, guidance, advice, technical feedback, and support to the partner country's Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) entity, which undertakes the country's responsibility to oversee, manage and implement the compact program. Conditions of Employment:
  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a federal security clearance
  • More than 1 job may be filled if additional vacancies occur within 120 days
  • Designated and/or random drug testing required
  • Some domestic and international travel is requied

  • Experience working in transitioning or developing countries, particularly in Central Asia, East Asia or the Former Soviet Union, and most specifically in Mongolia.
  • Experience working on water and sanitation sector projects including but not limited to advisory or project management experience involving policy reforms, institutional development and/or infrastructure construction projects.
  • Experience interacting and engaging with private sector companies and other organizations specific to the water and sanitation sector.
  • An advanced degree in engineering, finance, economics, international development, business, or a related discipline.
  • Familiarity with Mongolian history, politics, and culture and language proficiency in Mongolian.
  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to ensure the work history portion thoroughly documents the duties, responsibilities, and accomplishments that are directly related to this position in order to verify specialized experience.

Grants, Scholarships, and Calls for Paper

Call for Papers: "The Journal of Northeast Asian History Vol. 17

The Northeast Asian History Foundation continues to expand its interaction with scholars specializing in Asian history and related fields outside East Asia. The Foundation is also strengthening its ties with leading institutions and scholars by encouraging interdisciplinary and comparative approaches to research on geopolitical, cultural, educational, and other issues in East Asia.

The Foundation publishes the Journal of Northeast Asian History (JNAH), a peer-reviewed semi-annual English-language journal that focuses on history-based approaches to Asian politics, cultures, economy and other fields to shed light on the historical realities of the Asian World. The Journal's geographical scope extends to other parts of the world which have significant relevancy to Asian history, thus charting globalism and localism from global perspectives.

The Journal of Northeast Asian History calls for the submission of outstanding and unpublished papers for review and possible publication in summer 2021. We invite colleagues to consider the Journal when seeking to publish ongoing research since we believe this can be an impetus for further scholarly collaboration in the future. For full consideration, please submit manuscripts by March 15 of 2021.

Please contact us at or should you have any questions regarding the journal, its submission process or subscription to it.

Call for Applications - "Field Courses" NOMAD Science - Jun 15 - Sept 5, 2022

If you are interested in preserving Mongolia's cultural and natural heritage through research and public outreach, NOMAD Science is presently assembling its annual international, interdisciplinary team to conduct fieldwork in northern Mongolia. No experience necessary.

Please see for course offerings, schedule, and more information.the journal, its submission process or subscription to it.

New Resources
Interesting digital resource we discovered in January, 2022:
  • "Inside Mongolia": This recently launched newsletter service gives concise, timely updates on Mongolian economy, politics, and culture
Member contribution publications:
(We received the following announcement of publication from our members. If you would like to announce your publication, please reach out to us at
Selected scholarly articles published in January, 2022:
Other News and Events

"Embassy dialogue focuses on boosting the field of Mongolian studies" | Montsame
H.E. Ambassador U.Batbayar has met with Dr. Bolortsetseg Minjin, the ACMS Executive Director, to strategize the future partnership activities...


The Fall of the Soviet Union: Mongolia’s Path to Democratic Revolution | The Diplomat
The singularity of the Mongolian revolutionary process deserves to be underlined...

Recent Books

A Thousand Steps to Parliament" By Manduhai Buyandelger

Price: 32.50 USD (paper) 288 pages. UChicago Press
A Thousand Steps to Parliament traces how the complicated, contradictory paths to political representation that women in Mongolia must walk mirror those the world over.

Mongolia has often been deemed an “island of democracy,” commended for its rapid adoption of free democratic elections in the wake of totalitarian socialism. The democratizing era, however, brought alongside it a phenomenon that Manduhai Buyandelger terms “electionization”—a restructuring of elections from time-grounded events into a continuous, neoliberal force that governs everyday life beyond the electoral period. In A Thousand Steps to Parliament, she shows how campaigns in Mongolia have come to substitute for the functions of governing, from social welfare to the private sector. Such long-term, high-investment campaigns depend on an accumulation of wealth and power beyond the reach of most women candidates. Given their limited financial means and outsider status, successful women candidates instead use strategies of self-polishing to cultivate charisma and a reputation for being oyunlag, or intellectful. This carefully and intentionally crafted identity can be called the “electable self”: treating their bodies and minds as pliable and renewable, women candidates draw from the same practices of neoliberalism that have unsustainably commercialized elections. A Thousand Steps to Parliament traces how the complicated, contradictory paths to representation that women in Mongolia must walk mirror those the world over, revealing an urgent need to grapple with the encroaching effects of neoliberalism in democracies globally.

Manduhai Buyandelger is professor of anthropology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She is the author of Tragic Spirits: Shamanism, Gender, and Memory in Contemporary Mongolia, also published by the University of Chicago Press.
The Impact of Mining Lifecycles in Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan: Political, Social, Environmental and Cultural Contexts" Edited By Troy Sternberg, Kemel Toktomushev, Byambabaatar Ichinkhorloo

Price: 128 USD (hardcover) 39.16 USD (eBook)
This volume investigates how mining affects societies and communities in Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan. As ex-Soviet states, Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan share history, culture and transitions to democracy. Most importantly, both are mineral-rich countries on China’s frontier and epi-centres of resource extraction. This volume examines challenges communities in these countries encounter on the long journey through resource exploration, extraction and mine closure. The book is organised into three related sections that travel from mine licensing and instigation to early anticipation of benefit through the realisation of social and environmental impacts to finite issues such as jobs, monitoring, dispute resolution and reclamation. Most originally, each chapter will include a final section entitled "Notes from the field" that presents the voice of in-country researchers and stakeholders. These sections will provide local contextual knowledge on the chapter’s theme by practitioners from Mongolia and Central Asia. The volume thereby offers a distinctively grounded perspective on the tensions and benefits of mining in this dynamic region. Using Mongolia and Kyrgyzstan as case studies, the volume reflects on the evolving challenges communities and societies encounter with resource extraction worldwide.

The book will be of great interest to students and scholars of mining and natural resource extraction, corporate social responsibility and sustainable development.

Troy Sternberg is a senior researcher in the School of Geography at the University of Oxford, UK. He is the editor of multiple books, including Arid Land Systems (2019) and Societies and Climate Hazard Crises in Asia (Routledge, 2017).

Kemel Toktomushev is a research fellow at the University of Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan. He is the author of Kyrgyzstan: Regime Security and Foreign Policy (Routledge, 2016).

Byambabaatar Ichinkhorloo is a director of the International Institute for the Study of Nomadic Civilizations under the auspices of UNESCO. He is also a lecturer at the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology, National University of Mongolia.
Under the Shadow of White Tara: Buriat Buddhists in Imperial Russia by Nikolay Tserempilov

Price: 124 USD
The book systematically explores the history of the Buddhist community in the Russian Empire. It offers an advanced overview of the relations that existed between the Buriat Buddhists and the Russian imperial authorities.
Various institutions and actors represented Russian power: foreign and interior ministries, the Irkutsk general-governorship, the Orthodox Christian mission of East Siberia, local journalists and academic scholars. The book is focussing especially on the evolution of imperial legislation and specific administrative mechanisms aiming at the regulation of Buddhist affairs. The author demonstrates how these actors responded to conflicting situations and collisions of interests. Thus the history of relations between Russia and her Buddhist subjects is shown as a complex process with participation of a number of actors with their own interests and motivations.

Nikolay Tsyrempilov, Doctor in History, currently holds the position of Associate Professor at the Department of History, Philosophy and Religious Studies of Nazarbayev University (Kazakhstan). He specializes in the history of Buddhism in Tibet, Mongolia and Russia in the 17-mid 20th century.
Suncranes and Other Stories: Modern Mongolian Short Fiction, Translated by Simon Wickhamsmith

Page: 296. Price: 25 USD
Over the course of the twentieth century, Mongolian life was transformed, as a land of nomadic communities encountered first socialism and then capitalism and their promises of new societies. The stories collected in this anthology offer literary snapshots of Mongolian life throughout this tumult. Suncranes and Other Stories showcases a range of powerful voices and their vivid portraits of nomads, revolution, and the endless steppe.

Spanning the years following the socialist revolution of 1921 through the early twenty-first century, these stories from the country’s most highly regarded prose writers show how Mongolian culture has forged links between the traditional and the modern. Writers employ a wide range of styles, from Aesopian fables through socialist realism to more experimental forms, influenced by folktales and epics as well as Western prose models. They depict the drama of a nomadic population struggling to understand a new approach to life imposed by a foreign power while at the same time benefiting from reforms, whether in the capital city Ulaanbaatar or on the steppe. Across the mix of stories, Mongolia’s majestic landscape and the people’s deep connection to it come through vividly. For all English-speaking readers curious about Mongolia’s people and culture, Simon Wickhamsmith’s translations make available this captivating literary tradition and its rich portrayals of the natural and social worlds.

Simon Wickhamsmith teaches in the writing and Asian studies programs at Rutgers University. He is the translator of Tseveendorjin Oidov’s The End of the Dark Era (2015).
American Center for Mongolian Studies, 642 Williams Hall, 255 S. 36th St, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States
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