Buddhist Studies

University of California, Berkeley


The Berkeley Group in Buddhist Studies offers an interdisciplinary program of study and research leading to a PhD in Buddhist Studies. The group, which cooperates closely with the Departments of South and Southeast Asian Studies (SSEAS) and East Asian Languages and Cultures (EALC), emphasizes the study of Buddhism in its many forms within its Asian historical and cultural context. The group also offers an undergraduate minor in Buddhist Studies.

Center for Buddhist Studies

The Center for Buddhist Studies oversees a variety of research programs, scholarly events, and outreach activities, often in collaboration with units on and off campus. Activities include a colloquium series, conferences, a visiting scholar program, a film series (with the PFA), the Numata Visiting Professorship, and the International Buddhist Film Festival (with the Buddhist Film Society).

Undergraduate Program

Buddhist Studies: Minor

Graduate Program

Buddhist Studies: PhD

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Buddhist Studies

Faculty and Instructors

* Indicates this faculty member is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award.


Mark L. Blum, Professor. Buddhism, Japan, culture and society, modernization.
Research Profile

Jacob Dalton, Professor. Religion, ritual, Tibet, Buddhism, Tantra, Dunhuang.
Research Profile

Penelope Edwards, Associate Professor. Burma, Cambodia, nationalism, British and French colonialism, Chinese diaspora, memory.
Research Profile

* Robert P. Goldman, Professor. Literary theory, South and Southeast Asian studies, Sanskrit literature, Indian epic studies, and psychoanalytically oriented cultural studies.
Research Profile

Gregory Levine, Associate Professor. East Asian studies, history of art, Japanese art and architecture, histories of collecting, history of museums, Buddhist art and architecture, Buddhist visual culture.
Research Profile

Robert Sharf, Professor. East asian languages and cultures, medieval Chinese buddhism, Chan buddhism, Japanese buddhism, Zen buddhism, Tantric buddhism, buddhist art, ritual studies, methodological issues in the study of religion.
Research Profile

Alexander Von Rospatt, Professor. Ritual studies, Nepalese studies, Buddhist traditions of South Asia, doctrinal history, Newar Buddhism.
Research Profile

Affiliated Faculty

Brian Baumann, Lecturer. Mongolian language.
Research Profile

Osmund Bopearachchi, Adjunct Professor.

Sanjyot Mehendale, Lecturer. Near Eastern studies, Central Asia, Central Asian studies, archaeology and art history.
Research Profile

Jan Nattier

Emeritus Faculty

Patricia Berger, Professor Emeritus. China, buddhist art, East Asian studies, history of art, Asian architecture and art.
Research Profile

Padmanabh S. Jaini, Professor Emeritus.

Lewis Lancaster, Professor Emeritus. East asian languages and cultures, East Asian studies, east asian buddhism.
Research Profile

Eleanor Rosch, Professor Emeritus. Cognition, psychology, concepts, Eastern psychologies, psychologies of religion, cross cultural, causality.
Research Profile

Joanna Williams, Professor Emeritus.

Contact Information

Group in Buddhist Studies

3413 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-3480

Fax: 510-642-6031


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Program Director

Alexander von Rospatt, PhD

347B Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-1610


Undergraduate Adviser

Presi Diaz

3414 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-3480


Head Graduate Adviser

Robert Sharf

3121 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-6369


Graduate Student Affairs Officer

Grant Tompkins

3414 Dwinelle

Phone: 510-642-4497

Fax: 510-642-6031


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