Luce-SEA Projects and Partners Overview

 The projects envisioned by UW-Luce SEA coalesce around the theme of comparative authoritarianism and the goal of bridging Southeast Asian and Southeast Asian American studies. Several projects focus on approaching these elements through research archives and involve collaboration with a network of international partners. Please learn more about these archival projects and our partners below. 

UW-Luce SEA Projects

Critical Archival Practice Workshops 

UW-Luce SEA will develop a series of workshops on critical archival practice with colleagues at the Center for Khmer Studies (CKS), the Bophana Audiovisual Resource Center (Bophana Center), the Drug Archive at Ateneo de Manila School of Government (MSG), and the Yangon Film School (YFS). The goal is to support a network of scholars, artists, and archivists working on public memory, documentation, and reconciliation projects in Southeast Asia. The first workshop was held in Phnom Penh in June 2022 and included presentations from archivists and librarians, artists and documentarians, and researchers.

Archival Studies “Exchange” Fellowships 

UW-Luce SEA and its partners will establish three short-term archival studies fellowships for work in various collections, including collections at the Bophana Center, UW’s Cowell Film Archive, and UW’s Alaska Yukon Exposition materials.

Archival Fellowships at UW Libraries and Professional Southeast Asia Librarian Training Position

UW-Luce SEA aims to train a new generation of Southeast Asia librarians. To that end, it will support quarter-long archival fellowships for doctoral students or recent Ph.D.s to work in the UW Libraries. Luce-SEA will also support one Southeast Asia scholar to train at UW Libraries while attaining an MLIS degree. This addresses a longstanding concern within the research library community about the shortage of trained specialists in Southeast Asia studies.

Undergraduate Course: Southeast Asian Pasts and Futures

Dr. Raissa DeSmet (Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, UW Bothell) is developing a Southeast Asian research group at the Burke Museum. This three quarter-long experience will engage Southeast Asian American undergraduates in Asian Studies and American Ethnic Studies from the Seattle and Bothell campuses with the Burke Museum of Natural History’s Southeast Asia collections. During the year, students will implement a community engaged project that recreates connections to material objects that were severed from their lived contexts by the authoritarian forces of colonialism, militarism, and migration. Final student research will be showcased in a public exhibit, exposing the Southeast Asia collection at the Burke to a wider audience for the first time.

Learn more about the course here.


Bophana Audiovisual Resource Center

Founded by film director Rithy Panh, Bophana Center in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, collects archive images and sounds on Cambodia and offers free public access to this unique heritage. Bophana Center also trains young Cambodians for careers in filmmaking, broadcasting and new media.

The Burke Museum – University of Washington

The Burke Museum is located on the University of Washington campus in Seattle with a focus on dinosaurs, fossils, Northwest Native art, plant and animal collections, and cultural pieces from across the globe.

Center for Khmer Studies

The Center for Khmer Studies (CKS) promotes research, teaching and public service in the social sciences, arts and humanities in Cambodia and the Mekong region.


Yangon Film School

The European non-profit organisation Yangon Film School (YFS) aims to create a diverse media culture in Myanmar by training a creative young workforce that is also capable of meeting the audiovisual needs of Myanmar’s development sector. The Yangon Film School offers a range of audio-visual workshops for emerging Myanmar filmmakers that blends theory with practical, hands-on exercises.