About the Journal


IQAS is a peer reviewed, open access journal, published since 1970 by the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute in Freiburg, Germany (until 2016 as Internationales Asienforum). It is an international, multi-disciplinary journal dedicated to scientific exchange on Asian Studies between the continents. The journal focuses on original research articles on socially relevant issues related to political, ecological, economic and socio-cultural questions in Asia as well as on Asia's role within the international system. In addition IQAS also publishes research notes, documentations of current debates, review articles and book reviews. The publication principles of IQAS are upheld in those of the Declaration of Ethics and Good Practice, following the rules of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). IQAS is published four times a year online (since 2022) - in spring, summer, autumn and winter. A print version of the journal will continue to be published twice a year, containing all four online issues in two printed double issues. All contents published online in this website are available in open access, under the Creative Commons License Attribution CC BY NC ND 4.0.


Aims and Scope

IQAS provides a platform for multidisciplinary research on current and historical topics relevant to, among others, politics, economics, culture, nature, religion, language, society, science and technology in Asia. It serves to promote fresh scholarly enquiry on Asia from within the humanities and the social sciences, and to encourage work that communicates across disciplinary and regional boundaries. It seeks to foster cross-disciplinary cooperation, translocal and transregional analysis, comparative perspectives, and research going beyond established meta-geographies and conventional container categories in Area Studies. Authors employ up-to-date theoretical or methodological approaches, particularly those originating from Asia and the wider region.

IQAS adopts an innovative approach to Area Studies, inviting critical views of knowledge production, generation and dissemination on Asia. It is committed to an understanding of space as multi-sited and multi-modal, including non-territorial and non-geographical understandings of spatial entities. This approach allows for transversal outreach and an explicit inclusion of local epistemologies and context-sensitive studies.

We welcome contributions addressing readers in and beyond the scholarly world. We accept submissions from all academic disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, including anthropology, cultural studies, development studies, economics, environmental studies, geography, history, international relations, literatures and languages, political economy, politics, social policy and sociology.


Submission Information

Visit the journal’s submission site → Submit for detailed information and for uploading your manuscript.


Journal Structure

  • Articles: The peer-reviewed articles providing original research findings form the heart of each IQAS issue. The articles of one issue might all focus on a common topic (Special Issue) or be independent from each other as regards content. All articles undergo a double-blind peer review process. They have to be preceded by an abstract, keywords, and author information. Word length is 6,000-8,000 words, excluding notes and references. Articles may contain pictures, illustrations and tables as long as the copyright permissions have been cleared by the authors before submision.

  • Review Articles: Review Articles discuss a sample of one up to three newly published books on a similar issue relevant for current debates in Asian Studies. Review Articles take the presentation and assessment of the chosen book(s) as a starting point for discussing current developments within the academic field. They are treated as a normal scientific article, that means that they undergo the same peer-review process, provide an abstract, keywords, author information and follow the lenght's restriction of a maximum of approximately 8.000 words. Review Articles are optional, maximum one is accepted per IQAS issue.

  • Research Notes: Research Notes present research in the making. They give an insight in ongoing research projects in a pre-final, but advanced state and thus provide an opportunity for the researcher to publish first findings and bring his/her project for discussion within the academic community before complete finalisation. Research Notes are not subjected to an external peer-review due to the preliminarity of the research results, but are guided closely by the editorial team. Formally Research Notes follow the guidelines for scientific articles as regards word lengths (max. 8.000 words excluding notes and references), abstract, keywords, author information and the use of pictures and tables. Research Notes are optional, maximum two are accepted per IQAS issue.

  • Current Debates: This optional section was introduced in 2020 in order to provide a space for ongoing academic discussions on current theoretical and/or methodological questions. This section might thus f.ex. include interviews with experts on Asian Studies or debating inputs followed by different comments. The Current Debates section is designed for presenting ongoing academic discussions in appealing ways, and is open to new formats of presentation. Submissions are checked and commented on by the editorial board.
  • Book Reviews: Critical book reviews provide a short summary of a newly published book’s content, briefly summarize the main thesis of the author and connect the main research issues covered in the book to current scientific discussions. Finally, the reviewer points out major strengths and weaknesses of the book and evaluates the book’s theoretical framework, methods and its contribution to the ongoing scientific debate. Books discussed should not be older than two years and are selected by the editorial team, though suggestions both by the publishers and authors are welcome for consideration. Book Reviews are not subjected to the peer-review process, world length might vary between 1.000 and 1.500 words, neither abstract, nor keywords, footnotes or a list of references are attached to this section. Book Reviewes are obligatory for each IQAS issue, their number might vary between a minimum of five and a maximum of eight book reviews.

  • Conference Reports (until 2018): In former issues of IQAS Conference Reports formed an obligatory section for each issue. Since most conferences nowadays provide their own websites and platforms with timely information about the programme and events of the conference, we decided to stop publishing Conference Reports from autumn 2018 onwards. Conference Reports were not peer-reviewed and were chosen by the editorial team.

  • Obituary: Obituaries form an optional journal section, maximum one is occassionally accepted per issue. Of course they are not peer-reviewed as their nature is a very private memory of the personality and academic achievements of the deceased scholar.


Open Access Policy, Fees and Copyrights

The basic requirement for excellence in research is the optimal availability of quality-assured scientific information. Therefore, IQAS supports free and unrestricted online access to all its issues. This journal gives authors the option to publish open access free of charge via the Open Journal System (OJS), making all articles free to access online immediately on publication. The journal is financially supported by the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute, Freiburg, and technically supported by HASP and the Heidelberg University. It therefore does not charge an article processing charge for open access publication. A print version of each issue can be purchased from the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute.

IQAS is published under a Creative Commons license and will be hosted online in perpetuity. The standard license for the journal is → Creative Commons License CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International). This allows others to re-use the work without permission as long as the work is properly referenced, but doesn't allow to use the material for commercial purposes or to distribute any modification of the original material. All rights remain with the author.

Logo CC

The authors grant IQAS the non-exclusive right to reproduce his or her contribution in physical form, and to provide a paid print version of each issue in addition to the free online version. The costs for the print version are calculated to cover the costs for publication only and are not profit-seeking.

All articles submitted to IQAS must not have been published or be under consideration elsewhere. We are unable to pay for permissions to publish pieces whose copyright is not held by the author. Contributors will be responsible for clearing all copyright permissions before submitting interview citations, translations, illustrations, tables or long quotes. Material appearing in the IQAS does not necessarily represent the views of the editors or of the publisher. Responsibility for opinions expressed and the accuracy of facts published in articles rests solely with the individual authors.

Parallel copyright symbols before July 2022

Please note that articles published before July 2022 bear a misleading copyright symbol (© Internationales Asienforum) alongside the Creative Commons (cc) License in the PDF file. As published articles cannot be changed anymore retrospectively we apologise for this possible confusion. It is our ommission not to have deleted the © symbol when adopting the cc licensing. The copyright for all articles follows the cc licensing without any exception.


Journal History

IQAS – The International Quarterly for Asian Studies is the successor to the Internationales Asienforum. The original journal was founded in 1970 by Detlev Kantowsky, professor of Sociology at the University of Konstanz, and Alois Graf von Waldburg-Zeil, manager of the publishing house Weltforum Verlag (Munich). Its initial title, “Internationales Asienforum” (“International Asia Forum”), was its agenda: the founders intended to provide an academic and interdisciplinary platform for the upcoming field of modern Asian Studies in Germany. Soon many excellent scholars joined the journal as authors and/or on the advisory board. The Asienforum was the first and only German academic journal on Asian Studies at that time and was very well received. In 1977 Detlev Kantowsky handed over the editorial management to Ekkehard Kulke at the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute (ABI), but continued himself as main editor. After the sudden death of Ekkehard Kulke in 1978, the journal’s management was taken over by Clemens Jürgenmeyer (ABI), who then together with Kantowsky shaped the journal’s form for more than 30 years. After the closure of the Weltforum Verlag in 1996 the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute decided to add the journal to its own publishing concern, combining the editorial management and publishing under one roof. The ongoing digitization in academic publishing led inevitably to a change in publishing policy, and a profound reform process was initiated in 2010 when Jakob Rösel, University of Rostock, was assigned to succeed Detlev Kantowsky as editor of the journal. Five years later he handed over the journal’s editorship to an editorial team consisting of Claudia Derichs, Jörn Dosch, Uwe Skoda and Conrad Schetter. Since then the journal has undergone a profound reform towards an English-only, open access journal, culminating in the change of the journal’s title to “International Quarterly for Asian Studies” in 2017.



The Arnold Bergstrasser Institute is one of Germany’s major research centres in the domain of both comparative area studies and transregional studies. It is an independent, non‐profit research institute associated with the University of Freiburg. The institute’s research focuses on questions of power transformations, state institutions and societal conflicts in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. It follows a comparative, interdisciplinary, mixed-methods approach.