International Convention of Asia Scholars (ICAS)

Established in 1997, the International Convention of Asia Scholars (ICAS) is a global platform that enables individuals and institutions from different parts of the world to come together to exchange views on a variety of issues pertaining to Asia. Its Secretariat is hosted by the International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS), based in Leiden, the Netherlands. Since 1998, ICAS has brought more than 20,000 academics, civil society representatives, administrators and artists together at 10 conventions. It is the largest international gathering in the field of Asian Studies.

ICAS is an active accelerator of research. It is organised by local hosts (universities, organisations and cities) in cooperation with the ICAS Secretariat. ICAS offers the organising host a unique opportunity to profile itself in the global framework of Asian studies. ICAS also connects in a dynamic way to the host city and attracts participants from all continents to engage in transsectoral dialogues on Asia that transcend boundaries between academic disciplines and geographic regions. Furthermore, ICAS contributes to the decentring of Asian studies by including more ‘Asian voices’ while successfully convening a global space in which Asia scholars and social and cultural actors from the whole world can interact.

In the last ICAS conference (2017) in Chiang Mai, a few panels and roundtables were dedicated to discussing and examining Africa-Asia relations. The programme can be viewed here.

To learn more about ICAS, visit their website at