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Tibet Sustainable Governance Program / Profile

Home Page: http://www.tibetgovernance.org


Scholarly Content, Teaching, Training, Networking


The University of Virginia Tibet Sustainable Governance Program (TSGP) seeks to advance scholarship, research, and new perspectives on key issues confronting contemporary Tibet.  

Guided by a central concern for the well-being of communities on the Tibetan plateau, the program seeks to develop research initiatives that produce fresh insights, analyses, and approaches to the challenges of governance and public policy throughout the Tibetan region. Drawing on studies of specific public sectors, social services, and pressing social problems, our aim is to identify and evaluate emerging trends and dynamics, and to understand their implications for a more fair, just, and sustainable ordering of society.

The program strives to integrate a diversity of perspectives by convening workshops and symposia that offer a nonpartisan forum for a broad range of stakeholders-not only scholars and researchers, but also policymakers, nonprofit organizations, local officials, and community leaders from the Tibetan plateau as well as across China and globally. By forging new institutional partnerships and joint research initiatives, we hope to create a new space for engagement and dialogue on substantive issues of governance in the Tibetan region.

A New Paradigm

As the Tibetan region approaches uncertain times, the Tibet Sustainable Governance Program seeks to build new approaches to understanding and addressing the social and economic challenges facing Tibetan communities. The rubric of governance offers a new paradigm for framing these issues, one that provides both a conceptual and pragmatic way out of the conventional public discourse on Tibet. We premise our work on a broad notion of governance that encompasses not only the technical and institutional aspects of public policy and administration, but also larger questions concerning the negotiation and allocation of resources, social agency, and public authority.


Director Tashi Rabgey


Andrew M. Fischer, Institute for Social Studies, The Hague

David Germano, University of Virginia

Chakthar Gyal, Qinghai Normal University Nationalities Teachers College

Sangye Gyal, Education for Sustainable Development Center, Qinghai Normal University Nationalities Teachers College

Kunchok Gyaltsen, Qinghai University of Nationalities, Xining, Qinghai

Trowo Gyaltsen, Barkham Nationalities Normal School, Ngawa Prefecture, Sichuan Province

Manla Kyi, Qinghai University of Nationalities, Xining, Qinghai

Thubten Phuntsok, Minzu University of China, Beijing

Losang Rabgey, Fellow, Tibet Center, University of Virginia

Jamyang Tashi, Educational Sciences Research Institute, Ngawa Prefecture Education Department, Sichuan

Nicolas Tournadre, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris

Tseten Wangchuk, Fellow, Tibet Center, University of Virginia


The Tibet Sustainable Governance Program was jointly launched by the University of Virginia Tibet Center and Machik, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing opportunities for education and capacity-building for communities on the Tibetan plateau.

Current Focus

  • Education and Language Policy
  • Social Business and Entrepreneurship
  • Education to Employment
  • Economic and Social Development
  • Tourism:  Practice and Policy
  • Public Health

Future Goals

For the 2010-11 academic year, the Tibet Sustainable Governance Program’s education and language policy initiative will be developed under the leadership of Manla Kyi, who will join TSGP as a postdoctoral fellow.  The TSGP education initiative will also develop a new set of programs under the rubric of education-to-employment.  Through this program, thirteen resident fellows from the Tibetan region will be joining the UVa Tibet Center for two months in the spring semester of 2011.  TSGP will also continue to explore the potential for new research and policy studies in other social, cultural and economic sectors as circumstances permit.  One current area of exploratory research is public health. Led by UVa Visiting Professor Dr. Kunchok Gyaltsen, the TSGP healthcare initiative is assessing the potential for a demographic health survey of Tibetan populations in the PRC.  In line with the University’s public service mission, the Tibet Sustainable Governance program aims to transpose new ideas and insights into practical solutions and policy options. Recognizing that solutions to complex public problems require comprehensive and integrated efforts, we hope to find common ground with a broad range of stakeholders as well as to develop a shared sense of normative aspiration for human well-being across different sectors.



Education and Language Policy Initiative

Education and Language Policy Symposium, University of Virginia, April 30-May 1, 2009

Education, Social Development and Sustainable Communities, Oslo Seminar, June 27-29, 2010

Social Business and Entrepreneurship Initiative

Social Business and Entrepreneurship Conference, University of Virginia Darden School of Business, April 10-11, 2010

Tibetan Social Business Forum, Paomashan, Dartsedo, Ganzi Prefecture, July 17-18, 2010


Scholarly Disciplines
Multidisciplinary (), policy studies. (), social sciences ()
General Interests
Conservation (), Economic Development (), Education (), Gender (), Law (), Medicine and Public Health (), Natural Resources (), Population (), Religion (), business (), language ()
Time Periods of Interest
Current ()


Training opportunities are available for Tibetans from the Tibetan region on an occasional basis.  To inquire about current opportunities, please contact tibetcenter@virginia.edu.


Research Internship opportunities available for undergraduate and graduate students.  Please inquire at tibetcenter@virginia.edu.


Organization has no sub-projects.

Mailing Address

Tashi Rabgey, Director