The International Association of Buddhist Studies (IABS) is organizing an academic conference at The University of Vienna, Austria, from August 18th to 23rd, 2014. This conference is the premier international forum for scholars of Buddhism to present their findings. In lectures and seminars, attendees will enjoy opportunities to meet with the leading figures in Buddhist Studies fromacross the world. Scholars and their students also can get updated information and discuss the most recent developments in archaeological, historical, philosophical research.
The conference schedule is divided into sections and panels. Most of the research ranges from meditation, Buddhist theories of causation, and Buddhist networks through international travel to Yogacara in Tibet, Buddhist anthropology and Tocharian Buddhism. There are 25 Sections and 35 Panels, ensuring a packed but most fulfilling schedule.
Some topics remain of timeless concern, such as meditation. In the abstract of the presentation “arguing with meditation”, Alberto Todeshini says, The question of the relationship between meditation and doctrine has attracted scholarly attention throughout the history of the academic study of Buddhism and is still at the center of a lively debate… Panelists investigate the different ways that discussions of meditation in Buddhism have tended to serve as a platform for a wider range of issues, including sectarian identity, doctrinal and philosophical speculation, theorizing about the role of ethics in the life of Buddhist practitioners, and so forth.
One of the most interesting events in the schedule is a limited number of workshops aimed at supporting academic research: this series is called the TBRC Digital Library Workshop. The acronym stands for Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center (TBRC), which is a premier digital resource for Tibetan Buddhist literature. Synthesizing scholarly methods with the latest digital technologies, TBRC preserves, organizes, and diffuses Tibetan Buddhist literature, ensuring that this incredible body of texts is not lost but made accessible to readers and researchers worldwide.
This workshop is designed to engage scholars of Buddhist studies on how to conduct research within the TBRC Library. It seeks to inform and further a network of affiliated scholars and collaborators to contribute to the preservation of Tibetan Buddhist literature and enhance digital tools and resources for research. There are also project presentations aimed at advancing Buddhist Studies scholarship, such as an Indo-Tibetan Lexical Resource (ITLR) and SARIT, a digital text hub for classical Buddhist Sanskrit literature.
The IABS also invites exhibitors at the ground floor of the University of Vienna Juridical to present their range of ideas, writing, and research to the Congress participants and to enjoy the opportunity to get in contact with them.
IABS was pioneered by Buddhologists A.L. Basham and A.K. Narain in 1976 to promote and support academic Buddhist Studies “in a spirit of non-sectarian tolerance and with scientific research and communication as preeminent objectives”. To find all information on the congress and its academic program, such as dates and deadlines, proposals for panels and individual papers, registration, travel arrangements, exhibitors and social programs, visit the conference website.