SOAS University of London

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme

Pagoda Sai Kham Lerm Image

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme at SOAS

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme is a transformational programme that aims to further the understanding and preservation of ancient to pre-modern Buddhist and Hindu art and architecture in Southeast Asia. The Programme supported over 90 scholarships between 2014 and 2019, funds three fully endowed academic posts at SOAS, as well as research and publishing initiatives, conferences, lectures and workshops in London and Southeast Asia.

SAAAP is designed to strengthen SOAS’ research expertise and existing institutional links to create a vibrant network linking the art, archaeology and heritage organisations in the Southeast Asian region.

To read more about the project to date and its impact, you're invited to browse our impact reports and other key documentation under Related Information in our About Us section. 

The Alphawood Scholarships

The Alphawood Scholarships, administered through the Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme, are designed to bring outstanding Southeast Asian postgraduate students to SOAS to undertake Doctoral, Masters, Diploma or Certificate programmes which focus on ancient to pre-modern Buddhist and Hindu art and archaeology in Southeast Asia.

Through their SOAS postgraduate programmes, through engagement with leading SOAS academics and through the strong networks that they build during their time on award, our Alphawood Scholars and Alumni are making a significant and positive impact on the understanding and preservation of ancient to pre-modern art and architecture in the region. With support from SAAAP, our Scholars are able to apply new skills in their home institutions, advance the body of knowledge and develop important new threads of research, lead on discrete projects, events and activities through our Academic Support Fund, and build strong international networks to support them throughout their careers.

As well as supporting Scholars to undertake their postgraduate programmes at SOAS, the scheme also supports scholars with English-language training and support wherever required, by enrolling them in SOAS International Foundation Courses and English Language Studies (IFCELS) department in advance of commencing their academic studies. Successful candidates are asked to provide approved English language test results (IELTS for UKVI) to demonstrate that they hold the minimum requirement to obtain a Tier 4 (General) Student visa.

For a further introduction to the Alphawood Scholarships, you can download this SAAAP and the Alphawood Scholarships Factsheet (pdf; 5mb)  . And, for more detail and for information on how to apply, you can also download our SAAAP and Alphawood Scholarships Flyer (2017) (pdf; 2mb)  , and visit the Alphawood Scholarships web page.

Contact Us

If you would like more information on the Programme's activities or would like to contribute in any way we would be happy to hear from you. Visit the Contact Us page for more details.

SAAAP Academic Support Fund for Research, Publications and Outreach

Academic Support Fund

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme (SAAAP) invites applications to its Academic Support and Related Costs Funds. The Funds support individual and group research projects, conferences, workshops, publications and other activities and outputs which further the research and outreach aims of the Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme. The Funds are open to all SOAS staff, current SOAS postgraduate students and SOAS alumni, for activities that further the SAAAP Remit:

To support and advance the understanding and preservation of Southeast Asian Buddhist and Hindu art and architecture from ancient to pre-modern times. The SAAAP remit includes study of the built environment, sculpture, painting, illustrated texts, textiles and other tangible or visual representations, along with the written word related to these, and archaeological, museum and cultural heritage.

Applications for project funding should specifically address the topic(s) to be examined, with plans for relevant field or archival work, seminar, conference, engagement, publication or other pertinent outputs which directly advances the Programme’s mission. Activity eligible for support through the Funds may involve (but is not limited to): Seminars, workshops, conferences and events; Publications, edited volumes, monographs, books series, peer-reviewed papers or other academic publications; Public engagement and awareness raising; Alumni and student engagement activity; Institutional partnership building; Field research; Conservation and preservation; and other areas of work that address the overall objectives of the Programme. Applications should specify related outputs, including production of a catalogue, workshop proceedings, conference papers, presentations or online communications.

Applications may be collaborative, including relevant institutions, organisations and scholars. An annual budget limit of £1000 is ordinarily applied to approved projects led by SOAS postgraduate students and alumni. Applications will be assessed on an individual basis by the either the SAAAP Research & Publications Sub-board or by the Outreach Sub-board, depending on type. The Sub-board will then submit recommendations for support to the SAAAP Programme Board for approval.

To apply for SAAAP Academic Support and Related Costs Funding, please download our  Academic Support Fund Application 2018-19 (msword; 106kb)   and return the completed form to Alan Goulbourne at and

Academic Staff

The Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme is implemented under the direction of the SAAAP Programme Board, which meets five times per academic year. The Programme is also served by three Sub-boards which help to guide and support activity under the themes of Scholarships, Outreach and Research and Publications. Each Sub-board also meets five times per academic year.

For more information on the Programme's governing structure, please see our About Us page for more detail.