Established in October 2007, Asiascape is an attempt to build a new international research coalition in the rapidly emerging fields of cyberculture (New Media, Convergence Culture, Video Games and other related media, such as fan-culture) and animanga (Anime and Manga), especially as they relate to (or originate from) East Asia. Asiascape is hosted by Leiden University, the Netherlands. It is well known that a large proportion of this type of media emerges from the East Asian region (Japan, China and Korea), and Asiascape seeks to sponsor and organize research into the importance of these media as a series of transformative, cutting edge, transnational global commodities, and/or as a series of cultural products that reveal much about East Asia itself.
There is a scattered (and growing) group of international researchers working in this field and, in addition to conducting its own original research, Asiascape aims to provide a hub for the organization and direction of this rapidly emerging field. Under the direction of Professor Chris Goto-Jones and with an international advisory board of leading scholars, Asiascape sponsors a series of ‘state of the field’ events (lectures, conferences, competitions, exhibitions) and disseminates research using new and old media, including via this website, through its occasional papers series and its associated news-blog, vistas. Asiascape is also the home of ‘Beyond Utopia,’ a five-year project funded by the NWO (the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research) that is concerned with identifying the potentials of artistic media such as manga, anime, and video games for expression, criticism, and intervention in political thinking.