The York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR) is based at York University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It reports to the Vice-President, Research & Innovation and organizes its financial, administrative and human resources according to York University policies and practices. The Centre has a Director and Associate Director as well as an Executive Committee, External Advisory Council and an Annual General Meeting of members.

Click here to view YCAR’s Constitution.


The Director is appointed on a fixed term to provide overall leadership and academic direction for the Centre. (S)he/They have day-to-day administrative responsibility for the Centre including its staff, financial operations, fundraising, promotion and programmes. The Director is Shubhra Gururani (Anthropology)

Associate Director

The Associate Director assists the Director in administering the work at the Centre. (S)he/They also serves as the Director’s deputy in his absence. The Associate Director is also the Coordinator of the Graduate Diploma in Asian Studies. The Associate Director is Radhika Mongia (Sociology).


The Coordinator handles day-to-day operations at the Centre, is responsible for budgeting and personnel matters related to research projects and the Centre’s research activities, and serves as the administrator of the Graduate Diploma in Asian Studies (GDAS). The Coordinator is Alicia Filipowich.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee meets regularly, usually at least twice in each academic term. The committee makes all major decisions affecting the Centre, including: approval of the annual report and budget; approval of nominees for affiliation with the Centre as associates; approval of the reports and budgets of all projects; and, approval of projects or programs seeking affiliation with the Centre. Sub-committees of the Executive make decisions concerning the allocation of awards and space.

The 2022–23 Executive Committee:

Nga Dao, Social Science, Faculty Associate Representative
Mehraneh Ebrahimi, English, Faculty Associate Representative
B. Michael Frolic, Asia Business and Management Program
Vedanth Govi, Social Anthropology, Graduate Associate Representative
Shubhra Gururani, Anthropology, Director (ex-officio)
Mihyon Jeon, DLLL, Department of Languages, Literatures and Linguistics Representative
Ali Kazimi, Film, Faculty Associate Representative
Radhika Mongia, Sociology, Associate Director
Yu-Zhi Joel Ong, Computational Arts, Faculty Associate Representative
Yvonne Su, Equity Studies, Faculty Associate Representative
Megan Whitney, Geography, Graduate Associate Representative
Rachel Wong, English, Graduate Associate Representative
Cary Wu, Sociology, Faculty Associate Representative

External Advisory Council

The York Centre for Asian Research’s External Advisory Council (EAC) was established in 2013 to provide strategic advice and facilitate outreach to various segments of the non-academic community.

In particular, the EAC:
a) Contributes their wisdom and experience as YCAR considers new initiativesand strategic directions for its Asia and Asian Diaspora‐focused research taking place at York;
b) Advises on fundraising possibilities that will realize or further advance the new initiatives;
c) Projects YCAR activities and York‐based research into spheres in which they work to reach a wider off-campus audience.

Our EAC:

Sonny Cho, President and CEO, Canada-Korea Business Council
Samira Kanji, President and CEO, Noor Cultural Centre in Toronto
Keith Lowe, Hakka community leader
Julie D.T. Nguyen, International Business, Centennial College; Co-founder and Director, Canada Vietnam Trade Council
Yuen Pao Woo, Canadian Senator (independent representing British Columbia)

Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of YCAR associates is normally held in April. The purpose of the AGM is to discuss the annual report of the Centre including budgets, to ratify nominees for membership on the Executive Committee, and to ratify proposed amendments to the Centre’s Constitution.

Minutes of the YCAR Executive Committee meetings and its Annual General Meeting are available upon request to