Clark U. geographer receives prestigious residency from The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center

October 31, 2014
Clark U. Professor Yuko Aoyama

Professor Yuko Aoyama

Yuko Aoyama, professor in Clark University's Graduate School of Geography, was awarded a prestigious four-week academic writing residency from The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center, in Bellagio, Italy.

The residency will provide Professor Aoyama with an unparalleled opportunity to network with fellow residents at the Center next summer, and a serene setting in which to pursue her project, "Collaborative Governance between For- and Non-profit Organizations in India" which examines R&D alliances among multinational enterprises, non-governmental organizations, and social enterprises in India.

"This is an exciting opportunity to interact with world-renowned scholars working to expand opportunities for the underprivileged by securing livelihoods and advancing health," said Professor Aoyama, who plans to use the opportunity to write a book on social innovation in India.

Professor Aoyama's most recent research in India demonstrates that companies and NGOs in education, energy to health sectors actively collaborate for innovation especially when their target populations include the underprivileged.

"This form of multi-stakeholder approach is a robust and sustainable solution, and suggests a new avenue for balancing economic and social objectives for all stakeholders in the economy," she writes. "Some aspects of social innovation conceived and implemented successfully in India are also being exported to other countries in the Global South."

Professor Aoyama's research is funded by the National Science Foundation; her research team includes doctoral students in geography from Clark University and others based at the International Institute of Information Technologies at Bangalore.

Professor Aoyama is an economic/industrial geographer with expertise in global economic change, technological innovation, industrial organization, and cultural economy. She has received an Abe Fellowship from the Social Science Research Council, and research grants from the National Science Foundation (Geography and Spatial Science and Economics Programs), the National Geographic Society, and the Association of Asian Studies. She currently serves as an executive editor of Economic Geography, an internationally peer-reviewed journal owned by Clark since 1925 that actively supports scholarly activities of economic geographers. She joined the Clark faculty in 2000 and is affiliated with the George Perkins Marsh Institute.

The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center's mission is to promote innovation and identify impact-oriented solutions to critical global problems. The Center supports proposals that align with the Foundation's work to expand opportunities and to strengthen resilience for poor or vulnerable people, in particular projects relevant to the Foundation's core issue areas: Advance Health, Revalue Ecosystems, Secure Livelihoods, and Transform Cities. The Center typically offers two to four-week long residencies to no more than 15 residents at a time.

Founded in 1887 in Worcester, Massachusetts, Clark University is a liberal arts-based research university addressing social and human imperatives on a global scale. Nationally renowned as a college that changes lives, Clark is emerging as a transformative force in higher education today. LEEP (Liberal Education and Effective Practice) is Clark's pioneering model of education that combines a robust liberal arts curriculum with life-changing world and workplace experiences. Clark's faculty and students work across boundaries to develop solutions to complex challenges in the natural sciences, psychology, geography, management, urban education, Holocaust and genocide studies, environmental studies, and international development and social change. The Clark educational experience embodies the University's motto: Challenge convention. Change our world.