The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships in Buddhist Studies

The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Program in Buddhist Studies offers an articulated set of fellowship and grant competitions that will expand the understanding and interpretation of Buddhist thought in scholarship and society, strengthen international networks of Buddhist studies, and increase the visibility of innovative currents in those studies.

The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships provide two years of funding to recent recipients of the PhD for residence at a university for the purpose of revising the dissertation into a publishable manuscript or for beginning the first new project after completion of the PhD degree.

This program is made possible by a generous grant from The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation.

Read more about this fellowship program.

Please note: affiliations shown are as of time of award. Please click on fellows' names for current information.

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Watch "Emerging Themes and Methods of Research: A Discussion with ACLS Fellows," an annual meeting session featuring recent ACLS fellows. 

Jens Wilhelm Borgland
Jens Wilhelm Borgland  |  Abstract
I propose to make available for the first time the Sanskrit text of the naihsargika section of Gunaprabha's auto-commentary on the Vinaya-sutra, the Vinayasutravrttyabhidhanasvavyakhyana through the study of a unique and hitherto unstudied Sanskrit manuscript. The project will make important contributions to the study of the development of Buddhist monastic law and Sanskrit-Tibetan lexicography. Presenting the first English translation of this section of the VSS, I will analyse how the core rules regarding the allowed property of Buddhist monks, as well as social relations between monks and nuns, were interpreted in 7th c. Indian Buddhist monastic law.

Independent Scholar  -  A First Edition, Translation and Study of the Sanskrit Text of the Naihsargika Section of Gunaprabha's Vinayasutravrttyabhidhanasvavyakhyana – His Auto-Commentary on the Vinayasutra
the Department of Religious Studies, McMaster University

Claire R. Maes
Claire R. Maes  |  Abstract
This project studies the dialogic influence of ascetic others, in particular the Jain other, on the early Buddhist monastic community’s identity development and boundary negotiation. Starting from the premise that ascetic others played a central role in the early Buddhist community’s development, this project investigates how and how much of their dialogic influence can still be traced in the Pali Vinaya, being the monastic code of the Theravada school. It examines the manner how this normative monastic text acknowledges, integrates, and deals with the Buddhist monk’s ascetic others. Conceiving identity negotiation as an intrinsically relational and dynamic process, this study further examines the way how the Pali Vinaya develops a ‘Buddhist’ identity rhetoric vis-à-vis its ascetic others, whether real or imagined.

Lecturer, Languages and Cultures, Universiteit Gent, Belgium  -  Dialogues With(in) the Pali Vinaya. A Research into the Dynamics and Dialectics of the Pali Vinaya’s Ascetic Other, with a Special Focus on the Jain Ascetic Other
the Department of Asian Studies, University of Texas, Austin

Vincent Breugem
Vincent Breugem  |  Abstract
This project focuses on a pioneering Zen movement known as Darumashū (School of Bodhidharma), founded by the monk Dainichibō Nōnin (fl. 1189). Though a central agent of early Zen in Japan, the Darumashū was later dismissed as heterodox by competing Buddhist groups, and consigned to the margins of the historical narrative. Using long-neglected sources and recently discovered documents the project uncovers the doctrinal and ritual dimensions of the Darumashū, and reinserts the movement into medieval Buddhist history and discourse.

Independent Scholar  -  Darumashu: Japan's Forgotten Zen School
the Centre for Buddhist Studies, University of London