Recent years have seen a notable revival of the academic study of ‘frontiers’. Using Frederick Jackson Turner’s (1893) classic concept of the moving frontier line (and its significance for the development of American democracy) as a point of departure, the study of frontiers has been diversified to include (re)conceptualizations of the frontier as an abstract space of territorial expansion, exploration, and exploitation.
Projects under this research cluster engage with the academic study of ‘frontiers’ as “edge[s] of space and time: a zone of not yet – not yet mapped, not yet regulated” (Tsing 2003: 5100). Southeast Asia, the regional scope of the cluster, provides diverse avenues for an engagement with the spatial and temporal qualities of frontiers. Members of the cluster will initially investigate three different sub-projects, including a “heritage frontier” at the upper Mahakam in Central Borneo, organizational aspects of cultural entrepreneurship at “business frontiers”, and the “frontier communities” of KMT villages in Northern Thailand. The output of these projects attempts to combine academic products with reports and recommendations for policy makers to foster a dynamic dialogue between the academic world and the public realm.
(Cluster Manager: Dr. Jesper Doepping, email: firstname.lastname@example.org )
The emergence of social media platforms and the proliferation of user-generated content (UGC) open new possibilities for analysing a massive amount of data – so-called Big Data, which refers to the large-volume and complex data that come from heterogeneous and autonomous sources with distributed and decentralised control. Such data could be utilised for research and commercial purposes. This research project focuses on the two timely issues: (1) the image analysis and (2) the social media content analysis.
The objectives of this research project are to (1) infer the cognitive and affective image of Bangkok from traveller-generated photos and (2) analyst tweets about COVID-19 and the countries worldwide. These two objectives are part of the place image narrative. Furthermore, this research aims to create a dashboard that could visualise the results to policy makers and destination marketing organisations such as Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).
(Cluster Manager: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Viriya Taecharungroj, email: email@example.com )
Phase I – “People and Place”
The Bangkok Noi sub-district is a unique and storied community in the heart of Bangkok, along the banks of the Chao Phaya River. It preserves and practices culture, art, religion, and traditional skills of a bygone and celebrated era in Thailand. However, there is a call for revitalization in the area. There is a need for economic development and modernization, but also preservation of identity.
The Bangkok Noi Model Project is a collaborative trans-disciplinary research initiative between Mahidol University International College (MUIC) and Siriraj Hospital and funded by the Thai Health Promotion Foundation. The objectives of this research cluster are to focus on the well-being of the community, involving engagement with the people and place. Sub-projects of the first phase included a Cultural Walking Tour, a Town Hall Meeting with members of the local community, a short film about the area, a treasure hunt activity for families, and a Street Photography Workshop with students at Suwannaram School that led to a pop-up exhibition.
(Cluster Manager: Dr. Roberto Gozzoli, email: firstname.lastname@example.org )
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