The Orfalea Center for Global & International Studies at UC Santa Barbara has long been a bastion of informative conferences on vital topics. Two significant grants will invigorate the center’s research mission and spark innovative collaborations across campus.
The center has received $240,000 ($200,000 of which is allocated for UCSB) from the Ford Foundation, and $175,000 from the Carnegie Corp. Paul Amar, Orfalea Center’s director, called the grants “a real vote of confidence.”
The Ford Foundation’s two-year grant, he said, will allow the center to focus on China’s overseas financial and infrastructural investments in South America, the Middle East and Africa. The co-principal investigators are Amar, Lisa Rofel of UC Santa Cruz and Petrus Liu of Boston University.
The Carnegie award, “Security in Context,” is a two-year grant to develop social justice-oriented security studies and inclusive research methods. Amar is the sole PI for the project. It will run alongside parallel grants to the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and the University of Oklahoma.
Amar, who is also a professor in UCSB’s Department of Global Studies, was named the center’s director in July 2019. He credits the new Orfalea Consultative Council, which includes 30 scholars from the humanities and social sciences at UCSB, with breathing new life into the center. These scholars have worked to build dialogue between area-specific, transregional, ethnic studies and global research perspectives on campus.
By Jim Logan