The UBC Buddhist Studies Forum has been founded in the Department at the University of British Columbia in 2001. A main source supporting the running of this forum comes from Tzu-chi Canada, which has kept supplying a series of generous donations over the past twelve years. Through this forum, we have been able to foster the following three main programs.
First of all, we have run an occasional lecture series by bringing to UBC major scholars on Buddhist studies all over the world. Scholars who have come to UBC for lectures through this series include Antonino Forte (Napolis), T. Barrett (SOAS), Tom Tillemanns (Lausanne), John McRae (Indiana), Paul Groner (Virginia), Robert Gimello (then Harvard), Robert Sharf (Berkeley), Tōru Funayama (Kyoto), Albert Welter (Winnipeg), Eugene Wang (Harvard), James Benn (McMaster), Shen Weirong 沈衛榮 (Renming University of China), and most recently, Ge Zhaoguang 葛兆光 (Fudan).
The second program is an annual conference series. Each conference focused on issues related to different Buddhist traditions. From2006, I have collaborated with Chinese universities in rotating this conference series between UBC and several top universities in East Asia, including Tzu-chi University in Hua-lien, Peking University, Renmin University of China, and Fudan University in mainland China. Several conference proceedings have already been published, or are underway.
The third program was developed in 2008 as a cooperative arrangement with universities in Mainland China and Taiwan to hold annual summer programs. As part of these programs we have invited five to six leading international scholars to China each summer to work with domestic and foreign graduate students. In addition to the handful of seminars led by these researchers, this program has involved: (1) a series of lectures by Chinese scholars; (2) regular conferences; (3) special conferences for graduate students; and (4) fieldtrips.
As an extension of the summer program series, the forum has also, starting from 2013, begun to co-sponsor a translation series which introduces non-Chinese language studies on Buddhism and East Asian Religions into Chinese scholarly discourse.