Staff - Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific
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Our Staff

Prof. Niki Alsford, Head of ISAP

Niki Alsford is Professor in Asia Pacific Studies and Head of Asia Pacific Institutes at the School of Humanities, Language and Global Studies at UCLan. Alsford welcomes proposals for doctoral research on Asian Pacific society and culture. He is particularly keen on proposals pertaining to Taiwan and the wider Pacific Ocean. He is co-Editor of the Routledge Research on Korea series, and the Brill Series on Taiwan.

Alsford is Head of the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP) which was established in 2019 to function as an umbrella institute for the School of Humanities, Language & Global Studies’s successful Asia Pacific institutes. Of these institutes, Alsford is co-director of both the International Institute for Korean Studies (IKSU), and the Northern Institute for Taiwan Studies (NorITS). He is also chair the Centre for Austronesian Studies (COAST).

He is an appointed Research Associate at the Centre of Taiwan Studies at SOAS, the University of London and is a Research Fellow at the Ewha Institute of Unification Studies at Ewha Womans University in Seoul, South Korea.

He is a Fellow of Royal Asiatic Society and the Royal Anthropological Institute. He is Country of Origin. Expert (Taiwan) for the International Refugee Rights Initiative (IRRI), and Country of Origin Expert for Taiwan, North Korea, and the Pacific Islands for AMERA International. Prof Niki Alsford is also Book Series Editor for Brill Series in Taiwan Studies and Routledge Research on Korea. He is available for Radio, Television, and Press, for all matters relating to Taiwan. Read more

Alsford, Niki J.P and Hu Chia-yu, Local Aesthetics with Foreign Perceptions: The Formosan Collection Housed at the British Museum『他者視角下的地方美感』─ 大英博物館臺灣藏品圖錄出版與倫敦展示計畫草案. Taipei: National Taiwan University Press, 2018.

Alsford, Niki J.P., Buried Treasurers: Taiwan Indigenous Peoples’ Archives Held at the School of Oriental & African Studies, the University of London Taipei: Council of Indigenous Peoples, 2017.

Alsford, Niki J.P. Transitions to Modernity in Taiwan: The spirit of 1895 and the cession of Formosa to Japan . London: Routledge, 2017.

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Simon Green: The Formosan aborigines and the Spanish (1626–1642)’

Kate Martin: Moving towards an appropriate legal framework to allow for the free movement of Climate Displaced Peoples in the Asia Pacific as a method of climate resilience in disaster and Crisis Anthropology’

Fatimaah Menefee: Gastrodiplomacy in Contemporary International Relations of Asia Everyday Nationalism: Gastronomic Campaigns of North and South Korea, Taiwan and Japan’

Rebecca Schofield: Lost in Translation: The exploration of the role of a screenwriter in the translation of comedy writing for global consumption. Second Supervisor.

Hazel Clarke: The Portrayal of Mental Health in Science-Fiction Novels: A Comparison between British and Asian authors’ Second Supervisor.

Sam Swash: The Bodies of Kim: Preserving Political Eternity in North Korea Through Monumentality’ Second Supervisor. Second Supervisor.



Vera Yin Peng: ‘China’s Policy towards South Korea, 1961-2017′

Dr Sojin Lim, Associate Head of ISAP

Dr Sojin Lim is Senior Lecturer, Courses Leader for both MA North Korean Studies and MA Asia Pacific Studies, and Co-Director of the International Institute of Korean Studies (IKSU) at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan). She also works as Co-Editor of the ‘Routledge Research on Korea’ series. Prior to joining UCLan, Dr Lim worked for aid agencies as senior research fellow with hands-on field experiences. She obtained a BA and a MA from Ewha Womans University and a PhD from the Institute for Development Policy and Management (IDPM) at the University of Manchester. Dr Lim’s research interests lie at development studies, area studies, public policy, and political economy: development experience of South Korea; development assistance to North Korea; transformation of state system; global norms and compliance; and accountable institution and fragile states. Recently, she has discussed changes in North Korea and in the Korea Peninsula during media interviews, such as BBC Breakfast. Dr Sojin Lim is Book Series Editor for Routledge Research on Korea. Read more

Lim, S. (2019). Determinants of Aid Modalities: A Case of South Korea on Triangular Cooperation and its Implication towards North Korea. North Korean Review, 15(1): 73-93.

Kim, T and S. Lim (2017). Forging ‘Soft’ Accountability in Unlikely Settings: A Conceptual Analysis of Mutual Accountability in the Context of South-South Cooperation. Global Governance, 23(2): 183-203.

Lim, S. (2014). Compliance with International Norms: Implementing OECD DAC Principles in South Korea. Globalizations, 11(6): 859-874.

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Queralt Boadella-prunell: Cross-border Remittances and Mobility in North Korea.

Dr Lara Momesso, Associate Head of ISAP

Dr Lara Momesso is Lecturer and Course Leader for the BA Programme in Asia Pacific Studies at the School of Humanities, Language and Global Studies at UCLan. She is founder and Co-Director of the Northern Institute of Taiwan Studies at UCLan and founder and Co-Deputy Director of the Centre for Migration, Diaspora and Exile at UCLan.

Her research interests look at the specificity of gender in contemporary Asian migrations, the link between migration and political participation, the role of emotions in migration experiences.

She has an extensive track record on her main research theme, marriage migration between China and Taiwan. More recently she has turned her attention towards Asian migrant experiences in Europe, including Taiwanese citizens’ diplomacy in Europe, Chinese new migrants’ political participation in Italy, Chinese diaspora, triads and criminal networks in the UK. Another side project she has been involved in revolves around social media and democracy in Asian societies.

Dr Momesso is a Research Associate at the Centre of Taiwan Studies at SOAS (the University of London, UK), an Associate Fellow at the European Research Centre of Contemporary Taiwan (University of Tuebingen, Germany) and is an elected executive board member of the European Association of Taiwan Studies (EATS).

Dr Momesso welcomes proposals for doctoral research on contemporary Asian Pacific societies and cultures. She is particularly keen on proposals pertaining to Taiwan, and issues related to migration, gender, ethnographies in Taiwan as well as the Asia Pacific Region. Read more

Momesso, Lara (forthcoming). Chinese marriage migrants in Beijing’s Cross-Strait diplomacy. European Journal of East Asian Studies.

Momesso, Lara (2020). From bargaining to alliance with patriarchy: the role of Taiwanese husbands in marriage migrants’ civic organisations in Taiwan. Asia Pacific Viewpoint. DOI:

Momesso, Lara and Lee, Chun-yi (2019) Nation, Migration, Identity: Learning from the Cross-Strait Context. International Migration. DOI: 10.1111/imig.12576

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Lara welcomes proposals for doctoral research pertaining to the Asia Pacific, themes related to gendered migrations and/or applying ethnographic methods.

Dr Moises Lopes de Souza, Associate Head of ISAP

Dr. Moises de Souza is Lecturer in Asia Pacific Studies and Chair of the Northern England Policy Centre for the Asia Pacific (NEPCAP) at University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).He is co-founder of the South China Sea Think Tank and Researcher in Asia Studies at the International Relations Research Center of the University of São Paulo (NUPRI-GEASIA). He has a particular interest in Asian maritime disputes, Asia Pacific non-traditional security and China-Latin America relations. Read more

SPANGLER, J. (Org.); KARALEKAS, D. (Org.); SOUZA, M. L. (Org.) Enterprises, Localities, People, and Policy in the South China Sea: Beneath the Surface.1. Ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018.

SOUZA, M. L. Beneath the Surface of Consensus: The Development of Confidence-Building Measures Between the PRC and ASEAN in the South China Sea Disputes In: Jonathan Spangler, Dean Karalekas, Moisés Lopes de Souza. Enterprises, Localities, People, and Policy in the South China Sea: Beneath the Surface (Org.). 1 ed. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018, v. , p. 51-76.

SOUZA, M. L. ; KARALEKAS, D. Domestic Politics And Personal Beliefs In Taiwan’s Territorial Claims In: Peter BÁTOR; Róbert ONDREJCSÁK (Org.). Panorama of Global Security Environment 2015 – 2016. 1 ed. Bratislava: Strategic Policy Institute (STRATPOL), 2016, v. , p. 409-421.

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Moises welcomes proposals for doctoral research pertaining to the Asia Pacific, themes related to Asian maritime disputes, Asia Pacific non-traditional security and China-Latin America relations.

Dr Mareike Hamann, Associate Head of ISAP

Dr Mareike Hamann is a Lecturer in Japanese and Co-Director of the Institute for Japanese Studies (IJS) at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan). After completing a joint BA and MA degree in Japanese Studies and English Linguistics at the University of Tuebingen in Germany, she was granted a MEXT research fellowship at Chuo University in Japan and went on to pursue a PhD in Japanese Studies at the University of Manchester. Dr Hamann’s research focuses on the history of the Japanese language and how culture and society affect its usage.

Hamann, M. (2018). The Changing Grammatical Usage of Mimetics in Japanese. PhD thesis. University of Manchester.

Hamann, M. (2014). “Zur Vorsubstantivischen Verwendung von Ideophonen im Japanischen: Attributivsätze vs. Nominaladjektive (The prenominal usage of ideophones in Japanese: attributive clauses vs. nominal adjectives).” Ed. by Martina Ebi. Schriften der Gesellschaft für Japanforschung, vol. 1, pp. 9-22.

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Mareike welcomes proposals for doctoral research pertaining to the Asia Pacific, themes related to the history of the Japanese language, how culture and society affect its usage, and the relationships and links between North England and Japan.

Dr Ti-han Chang, Deputy Chair of COAST

Ti-han teaches across a range of subjects for both UG and PG levels at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), including topics such as environmental development and socio-political movements in the Asia Pacific region. With her expertise in Taiwan studies, she also delivers a module dedicated to the postcolonial history, literature and society in Taiwan. Ti-han is particularly interested in postcolonial ecocriticism, which draws her attention to research topics such as nonhuman agency, borders and nations, climate change and migration. Her current research project focusses on the impacts of climate change on the migration of Pacific Islanders.

Her current research projects include: “Taiwanese Literature in Transition: Indigenous Writing and Eco literature as Method”, “The Agency of Waste in the Pacific Climate Fictions – On Bruno Latour’s Concept of Actant”, “Climate Refugees or Future Migrant Labour Force: I-Kiribati Migrant Issues in Matthieu Rytz’s Anote’s Ark (2018)”, and “A perspective from the South: migration versus adaptation as a response to climate change in the Pacific”.

Chang, Ti-han. « Éco-terrorisme ou écohéroïsme ? Analyse littéraire de “The Rice Bomber” de Cho Li basée sur l’autobiographie de Yang Ju-men », Imaginaires de l’environnement en Asie (Inde, Chine, Taïwan), Philippe Postel (dir.), Atlantide, n° 10, 2020, p. 141-156,

Chang, Ti-han. “Shaping Taiwan’s History through Non-human Agents”. European Journal of East Asian Studies 19.1 (2020): 74-97. Web.

Chang, Ti-han. “Book review of Wu Ming-yi’s The Land of Little Rain (2019).” International Journal of Taiwan Studies 3.2 (2020): 380-382.

Ti-han welcomes proposals for doctoral research on environmental humanities and postcolonial studies of Taiwan and the wider Asia Pacific region.

Mr Bob Vaughan Walley, Deputy Chair of COAST (External)

Bob has a been a Lecturer in Community Leadership and Positive Environments Project Coordinator at UCLan on fixed contracts since 2004. During this time, he has also managed local, national and international research and community engagement projects involving climate change communication and resilience. He has worked with many vulnerable groups across the world, most frequently with refugees, asylum seekers or displaced peoples. When not engaged with projects at UCLan, he has conducted climate change research in various parts of Asia, particularly focusing on levels of empowerment or resistance at community and grassroots level. Currently, he is researching the effects of climate change and ocean level rise on communities throughout Polynesia and the Pacific. He is currently planning an expedition to sail to Polynesia with a diverse research team, to record data on the current challenges facing the archipelago.

With a background in creative and visual arts, Bob has been raising awareness of challenges and situations concerning climate change all over the world through film, publications and stories, interactive workshops and events, visual or performing art exhibitions and installations. Bob is an early years researcher with various published materials. He is currently undertaking a Professional Doctorate in Education with UCLan specialising in climate change education, researching the use of innovative technologies, namely virtual reality, evaluating its use as a communication tool and to what extent this can positively engage participants.

Walley, B. Ali, Y. (2020) Transformative education: Exploring leadership and identity with unaccompanied minors seeking asylum on the Greek island of Lesvos, Experiential education as pedagogy for social justice: praxis and practice for shaping 21st-century global citizen leaders

Carter, A. Atkins, M. Walley, B. Field, H. (2019) The Causes and Effects of Rural to Urban Migration in Mongolia, Royal Geographical Society Report.

Chandia, M. and Walley, B. (2018) Conceptual Landscapes of Global Environmental Conscientization, Paulo Freire and Transformative Education: Changing Lives and Transforming Communities.
DOI: 10.1057/978-1-137-54250-2
ISBN: 978-1-137-54249-6

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Prof. Robert Ash, External Steering Committee Member

Prof. Ash is an Emeritus Professor at SOAS University of London, and Founder and Professorial Research Associate of the Centre of Taiwan Studies at SOAS. Before his retirement in 2020 he was a Professorial Fellow of the SOAS China Institute and Professor of Economics with reference to China and Taiwan. From 1986 to 1995 he was Head of the Contemporary China Institute at SOAS; during 1997-2001 he was Director of the EU-China Academic Network.

From 1999 to 2013 Prof. Ash was Director of the SOAS Taiwan Studies Programme and its Centre of Taiwan Studies. In 2012 he received the Freedom Medal of Diplomacy from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the ROC Government in recognition of his efforts on behalf of Taiwan Studies in the UK and elsewhere in Europe.

Prof. Ash has held visiting research and teaching positions at universities in Australia, Hong Kong, France and Italy. He has been researching China for more than 40 years and has published widely on development issues relating to China, as well as on Taiwan and Hong Kong. He has been a consultant for international banks and multinationals, and has undertaken work on behalf of the European Commission and the International Labour Organisation.

Prof. Ash’s current research interests focus on domestic social and economic development issues in China, especially as these relate to living standards, agriculture and the rural sector.

Affiliated Research Fellows

Dr Jeong-Im Hyun, Affiliated Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

Dr. Hyun is a sociologist and lecturer at the School of Humanities, Languages and Global Studies of the University of Central Lancashire. She teaches several modules for MA North Korean Studies and BA Korean Studies programmes. Her teaching and research areas are contemporary socio-political history and political sociology of North and South Korea and Europe. See more.

Hyun, Jeong-Im (2015) What really matters in creating mass mobilization, classical organization or new social media? A comparative case study of the mass mobilization process in France and South Korea. Contention: the multidisciplinary journal of social protest, 3 (1). pp. 1-15. ISSN 2572-7184

Hyun, Jeong-Im and Chun, Sang-Chin (2014) Théorie du complot et la communication politique en Corée du Sud. Hermes, 68 (2). ISSN 0767-9513

Hyun, Jeong-Im (2014) What makes mass mobilization possible? Korea’s candle light movement case in 2002. Wiener Beiträge zur Koreaforschun, VI (1). pp. 136-149. ISSN 1998-989X

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Sam Swash: The Bodies of Kim: Preserving Political Eternity in North Korea Through Monumentality’.

Dr Adina Simona Zemanek, Affiliated Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

Adina Zemanek is a Lecturer in Asia Pacific Studies at the University of Central Lancashire and an executive board member of the European Association of Taiwan Studies. Her teaching at UCLan has covered topics such as East Asian popular culture, the cultural and creative industries in East Asia, East Asian philosophy and research methods.

Her research interests include: nation branding in Taiwan and Taiwan’s citizen diplomacy in Europe; banal and everyday nationalism in Taiwanese visual culture; history and memory in Taiwanese graphic narratives and tourist souvenirs; Confucianism, gender and power in Chinese and Taiwanese TV dramas.

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Zemanek, Adina Simona (2018) Nation Branding in Contemporary Taiwan. A Grasroots Perspective. Culture, Theory and Critique, 59 (2). pp. 119-138. ISSN 1473-5784

Zemanek, Adina Simona (2015) Familiar Spaces: (National) Home in Contemporary Taiwanese Tourist Souvenirs. In: The 12th Annual Conference of the European Association for Taiwan Studies “(In)Visible Taiwan”, 8-10 April 2015, Jagiellonian University in Krakow. (Unpublished)

Zemanek, Adina Simona (2016) Daughters of the Motherland and (Wo)men of the World. Global Mobility in Shishang (Trends/Cosmopolitan), 1993-2008. Archiv Orientální / Journal of African and Asian Studies, 84 (2). pp. 317-347. ISSN 0044 8699

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She welcomes proposals for doctoral research on topics pertaining to public diplomacy, nation branding, media and popular culture in East Asia, especially Taiwan and China.

Dr Madoka Thomas , Affiliated Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

Madoka Thomas is currently an Associate Lecturer in Japanese and Study Abroad Advisor at the University of Central Lancashire. She is also one of the Newsletter Editors for the BATJ (British Association for Teaching Japanaese). She completed her BA in International Relations at Tsuda University, Tokyo and MA in Applied Linguistics at the University of Birmingham. She has a particular interest in teaching and learning Japanese, gender representation and social justice.

Dr Jonathan Westaway, Affiliated Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

Dr. Jonathan Westaway is a Senior Research Fellow in History in the School of Humanities, Languages and Global Studies at the University of Central Lancashire, UK and is a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society-Institute of British Geographers, the Royal Anthropological Institute and the Royal Asiatic Society. He is a cultural and environmental historian. His research focusses on imperial cultures of exploration in both polar and mountain environments. His recent research has examined British imperial governance, knowledge
practices and leisure cultures in Highland Asia and Central Asia c.1850–1947 and their representation in travel writing, photography and film. He is currently principal investigator on the AHRC Research Network Other Everests: Commemoration, Memory and Meaning and the British Everest Expedition Centenaries, 2021-2024.

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Westaway, J. (2018) Mountain of Destiny: Kanchenjunga 1929, Heaton Cooper Studio, Grasmere, Cumbria, 15 November-31 December 2018.  Exhibition of photographs from the 1929 German Kanchenjunga Expedition presented to E. O. Shebbeare (private collection) and contemporary paintings of Kanchenjunga by the landscape artist Julian Cooper.  

Westaway, J. (2018) ‘Thinking Like a Mountain: The Life and Career of E. O. Shebbeare’, The Alpine Journal, 2018, Vol. 122, pp.205-218.  

Westaway, J. (2017) ‘Eric Shipton’s Secret History’, The Alpine Journal, 2017, Vol. 121, pp. 215-229.

Westaway, J. (2014) ‘That Undisclosed World: Eric Shipton’s Mountains of Tartary (1950)’, Studies in Travel Writing special issue on Xinjiang, Vol. 18 (4), 2014, 357-373

Research Interns

Ms April Smith, Intern at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

April is a final year Human Geography Undergraduate, with an interest in feminism and is completing her dissertation on urban regeneration.

She is assisting as an Intern over summer, to produce findings on: Policy Support, Scenario Planning and Adaptive Management for Islanders in the Asia Pacific.

April would like to pursue a career in Academia as a Lecturer.

Ms Anna Kolendo, Intern at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

Anna Kolendo is currently a Research Intern at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP) at the University of Central Lancashire. Completing her Bachelor of Arts degree in Asia Pacific Studies last month, she intends to proceed to Master’s in International Relations in September. 

Her ongoing internship research involves climate denial and attitudes towards climate change in the Pacific Islands. Anna’s other research interests, embedded in her dissertation, include masculinity and gender dynamics in Japanese society.  

Ms Abigail Counsell, Intern at the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP)

My name is Abby, I have just completed my bachelor’s degree in Asia Pacific Studies with Korean, and I will be doing a masters in North Korean studies in September.

I am also the UCLan Womens Volleyball captain as well as society chair, and some of my main interests include history, culture, language, environmental issues, and food!

Ms Amie Kirk, Intern at the Institute of Japanese Studies (IJS)

Amie Kirk is a Affiliate Research Fellow working within the Institute for the Study of the Asia Pacific (ISAP) at the University of Central Lancashire. Completing her Bachelor of Arts with honours in Illustration in 2019, she joined the team in March 2020.

Prior to UCLan Amie worked in the financial sector whilst pursuing her freelance illustration career, having illustrated a series of children’s books. Amie’s main area of interest is Asian Art, particularly Japanese Ukiyo-e, Sarawakian Tribal Tattoos and North Korean political posters. When not pursuing these interests, Amie enjoys video games and cosplay.

Amie is currently working with the Institute of Japanese Studies on a research project focusing on connections between North England and Japan and helping to organise student events.

Dr Philip Constable, Research Advisory Board Member

Dr Philip Constable is Senior Lecturer in History. He lectures on the history of modern Asia and the Asia-Pacific, with a research focus on the history of 19th and 20th-century South and South-east Asia.

His research interest focuses on Dalit history and society in 19th and 20th-century India. He is also involved in an inter-university research project on Buddhism and society in South-east Asia. Philip is a member of Teaching Academy. Read more

Dr Sunny Liu, Research Advisory Board Member

Sunny has more than 20 years’ experience in teaching Chinese as a second language. She has taught in China, the US and the UK, and was awarded fellowship of the Higher Education Academy in 2012.

As an associate professor in translation since 2007, Sunny has also had nine translated books published, and written a column for the China Daily for two years. Read more

Dr Edward Griffith, Teaching Advisory Board Member

Ed Griffith’s research interests are mainly focussed on the international relations of East Asia, in particular the Sino-Japanese relationship and China’s approach to its own changing role in the region. He is interested in exploring how established IR theories can be adapted to deepen our understanding of China’s behaviour in developing its relationships with neighbouring countries. Read more

David Leeming, Innovation Advisory Board Member

David has lived and worked across the Globe. He specialises in researching, designing, and delivering programmes in Intercultural Leadership/ teams with a strong focus on Employability. David has a diverse portfolio of professional and academic qualifications. He has published works in Blended Learning, Employability and Intercultural Communication. He has a track record in significant grant capture. He has a strong belief in people and won’t let a day go by without having a positive engagement. Read more

Our Institutes

Please visit our individual Research Institute and Centres websites for more information on staff and affiliates working within each institute.