Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, October 10, 2013 — The Asia Foundation and The American Centre for Mongolian Studies today launched their Books for Asia program partnership. The event is part of a series of celebrations to mark The Asia Foundation’s 20th anniversary in Mongolia.
One of The Asia Foundation’s best known and most beloved programs, Books for Asia is the leading provider of donated information resources in the region. The program distributes one million books to 18 countries throughout Asia. Books for Asia is committed to connecting Mongolian institutions with high-quality material from some of the world’s best information resources. When the Foundation first started its programming in Mongolia in 1990, Books for Asia responded to the critical need for English-language books by donating publications that were not yet available in the country. Since then, the program has provided more than half a million books, donated by leading U.S. publishers, to a wide variety of Mongolian institutions in Mongolia’s most far-flung corners.
The American Center for Mongolian Studies (ACMS) is a non-profit educational organization incorporated in 2002 that supports the development of Mongolian Studies and academic exchanges with Inner Asia. The activities of the ACMS include the development of academic resources, student and research support and the fostering of academic partnerships in all fields of study related to Mongolia. The primary areas of focus include direct logistical support to students and faculty in the form of services, fellowships, and grant opportunities; organizing and sponsoring conferences; and disseminating and making information accessible about Inner Asia and research in the region.
During the partnership launch, Minister of Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ms. Ts. Oyungerel–one of the Foundation’s earliest grantees and a distinguished author–spoke of the importance of the Books for Asia program for Mongolia, as well as ACMS’ critical work to promote Mongolian studies and academic exchanges. Ms. Suzanne E. Siskel, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of The Asia Foundation, emphasized the power that English-language books play in increasing people’s access to information and expanding their opportunities across Asia.
Under the partnership, ACMS will manage Books for Asia’s distribution program and connect the program to its newly established librarian training program. ACMS and The Foundation will also work together to further promote the use of English-language academic and non-academic books through special events and social media, and encourage the use of high-quality digital content such as open education resources.
Since 2002 the American Center for Mongolian Studies has promoted academic exchanges and scholarly activities between Mongolia and the United States. As an international non-profit organization, our aim is to develop the study of Mongolia through fellowships, academic exchanges, library and research training, lectures, conferences and field research support. The ACMS also maintains the largest public English language research library and electronic data archive in Mongolia. As a member of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC), the ACMS receives support from the US federal government, foundations, corporations and individuals. To date the ACMS has provided over $7 million in fellowships, educational and research support programs.