Tim Oakes

Tim Oakes is Professor of Geography and Director of the Center for Asian Studies. He holds a PhD in Geography from the University of Washington, and a BA in East Asian Studies from Colby College.  He has held visiting faculty appointments at the University of Iowa, the University of Technology Sydney, Guizhou Minzu University, Wageningen University, the National University of Singapore, and the University of Hong Kong. He is also a research affiliate with the Cornell University Contemporary China Initiative, and the Media Studies Department at the College of Media, Communication, and Information at CU Boulder. He is Associate Editor for Eurasian Geography and Economics, and serves on the Advisory Board for the Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Hong Kong, and the Center for International Business Education Research at the University of Colorado Denver. His research focuses on social and cultural transformation in contemporary China and, in particular, the uses and reinventions of local culture as a resource for economic development and governance objectives. He has explored this theme in the contexts of ethnic tourism and craft commodity production, cultural heritage development, and urban redevelopment and planning. His recent research explores the development and use of leisure and consumption spaces in China’s urban areas, as well as in urbanizing areas of rural China. Currently, he is working on urban planning and infrastructural urbanism in China’s ‘New Area’ urban zones. Having grown up in Idaho, Tim has also maintained an interest in comparing the Western American experience with development and change in China’s western regions.