The proposed Conference would focus on Buddhist sites and remains that have been worked up during the last six decades or so. It would include both kinds of papers - straightforward ones that just report archaeological finds; but will also have a second part to it that interrogates the methodological/ theoretical frameworks within which archaeological work is carried out. Some of the questions that the proposed Conference will seek to address are: how does one define a Buddhist site? How can one show the relationship between a religious centre and the lay community through archaeological work? Is it possible to meaningfully interpret a multi-religious and multi-ethnic landscape through archaeological means?
The proposed Conference will greatly facilitate advanced research in the archaeology of the region by the comparison of data from various parts of the Subcontinent. For the theoretical aspects it will be seminal to understand, for example, the development of the concept of rock sculpture and rock caves/ hermitages - e.g. in the second half of the Millennium all around the Buddhist oikoumene (lit. the inhabited earth) - and its reflection in the landscape of the Buddhist sites in the region.
2 OBJECTIVES AND OUTPUTS OF THE CONFERENCE
- To discuss the country situation (of the SAARC Member States) related to recent excavation/ explorations of the Buddhist Archaeological sites and remains;
- To explore the feasibility of digitally mapping all Buddhist Archaeological sites and remains in South Asia;
- To develop and adopt a shared document on excavation, documentation and conservation methodology.
- Publication of the Conference Proceedings in a book form.
The Conference would have Paper Reading and Poster Sessions.
3.1 PAPER READING SESSION:
Each of the themes will have one Keynote speaker plus at least 5-6 speakers. The selection of the Keynote speakers will be made by the SCC on the basis of the research profile of the participant.
3.2 POSTER SESSION:
Along with the Technical Sessions for presentation of research papers, the Conference would also invite young researchers to participate in the Poster Session, to showcase their research/ fieldwork.
The Conference venue will have a designated space for display of posters (pin up boards for A0 size) where the presenters will have an opportunity to interact with the participants. Depending upon the number of Posters selected for the Conference, a separate session for the poster presenters could also be organized where the presenters could answer the questions from the audience.
All selected posters will appear in the book of abstracts and will also be published in the online poster proceedings. The Poster presenters are advised to contact the SAARC Cultural Centre in advance with details of size/ number of sheets of their Poster presentation and if copies of any hand-outs are to be prepared for distribution during the Conference.
4 DATES AND VENUE
The Conference will be held at the Buddhist Cultural Centre, Colombo, Sri Lanka for 3 days from 22 to 24 August, 2012.
5 POST-CONFERENCE TOUR
A full day Post-Conference tour will be organized on 25 August 2012 to Anuradhapura, for the participants of the Conference.
Anuradhapura is one of the ancient capitals of Sri Lanka, famous for its well-preserved ruins of ancient Lankan civilization. It lies in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka, 205 km north of the current capital Colombo. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and one of the eight World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka.
6 PARTICIPATION AT THE CONFERENCE
6.1 OFFICIAL NOMINEES FROM THE MEMBER STATES:
The SAARC Cultural Centre invites all the Member States to send a minimum of four nominations (maximum 10 persons can be nominated by a Member State) from amongst the experts and academicians of their country.
6.2 ACCOMPANYING PERSONS:
Every person accompanying the official nominees of the SAARC Member States (viz. the Delegates/ Resource Persons-cum-Panel Heads) should pay a registration fee of US $ 300/- towards his/ her boarding and lodging during the Conference. All such accompanying persons will be accommodated with the respective official nominee on full board/ twin-sharing basis.
6.3 OTHER PARTICIPANTS:
The SAARC Cultural Centre would also accept the participation of other experts from the region (other than the nominees of the respective SAARC Member States) as well as from those residing outside the SAARC Region provided they are able to meet their travel and accommodation expenses to attend the Conference. However, to facilitate their stay during the Conference, the SAARC Cultural Centre would assist them in securing accommodation in guest houses/ hostels at economic/ subsided rates.
The SAARC Cultural Centre, however, reserves the right to accept or reject any request for participation in the Conference.
6.4 REGISTRATION FEE:
Official nominees of the SAARC Member States : Nil
Accompanying persons of the Official nominees : 300.00 US$
Other participants Local : 500.00 (LKR)
Overseas : 50.00 US$
All payments are to be made in favour of the SAARC Cultural Centre, Colombo, either through e-payment OR in cash at the registration counter at the Conference.
Name of the Bank : Bank of Ceylon
Address : Torrington Square Branch, Colombo -07 (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lankan Rupee A/c : 0009773920
US $ A/c : 9825298
Swift Code : BCEYLKLX
6.5 NOMINATION PROCESS:
All nominations should include:
i. Full Name and affiliation of the Person with a detailed CV; and
ii. An Abstract (c. 500 words) of the proposed paper/ poster presentation.
The participants would be required to submit their full papers before the Conference and make a short presentation at the Conference. The Poster Presenters would be required to put up their posters at the designated space at the Conference venue, before the inauguration of the Conference.
7. LAST DATE
The last date for sending the nominations is 25 June 2012.
(For sending the nominations, please use the registration form attached with this note or download it from the website of the SAARC Cultural Centre – www.saarcculture.org).
The language for the Conference would be English.
9. LOGISTIC SUPPORT
The SAARC Cultural Centre would provide the local hospitality (hotel accommodation on full board basis) and the local transport to all official nominees of the SAARC Member States (viz. the Delegates/ Resource Persons-cum-Panel Heads) and the registered accompanying persons.
The airfare of the nominees of the SAARC Member States is to be borne by the respective Member State. Other participants are required to make their own arrangement to meet the airfare and accommodation expenses.
The Conference facilities (delegate kit, tea, working lunch), as well as invitation to special events and the field trip would be extended to all registered participants and accompanying persons.