The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Grants for Critical Editions and Scholarly Translations

The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Program in Buddhist Studies offers an articulated set of fellowship and grant competitions that will expand the understanding and interpretation of Buddhist thought in scholarship and society, strengthen international networks of Buddhist studies, and increase the visibility of innovative currents in those studies.

Grants for Critical Editions and Scholarly Translations support a broad range of endeavor, from the creation of critical editions (with full scholarly apparatus), to translation of canonical texts into modern vernaculars, to the translation of scholarly works on Buddhism from one modern language into another. Both individual and collaborative projects are eligible.

This program is made possible by a generous grant from The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation.

Read more about this fellowship program.

Please note: affiliations shown are as of time of award. Please click on fellows' names for current information.

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Watch "Emerging Themes and Methods of Research: A Discussion with ACLS Fellows," an annual meeting session featuring recent ACLS fellows. 

  • A Translation of the Early Tang Court Debates between Buddhists and Daoists from the Third and Fourth Chapter of Daoxuan's Ji gujin Fo Dao lunheng | Abstract

    The project proposes a scholarly English translation of reports of public debates between Buddhists and Daoists held at the court of the early Tang dynasty between 625-63 CE, in the third and fourth chapter of Daoxuan's (596-667) Ji gujin Fo Dao lunheng (T 2104). Daoxuan presented the first three chapters in 661 CE. The last chapter, with seven debates held at the court of emperor Gaozong (r. 650-683), was presented to emperor Gaozong in 664 CE. The text stands out from other apologetic compilations because it reports contemporary court debates in direct speech. These reports are by far the most detailed account of public debates between Buddhists and non-Buddhists in early medieval China we have. They offer a unique glimpse at direct interaction of Buddhists and Daoists at court.

    Friederike Assandri
    Friederike Assandri

    Independent Scholar, Chinese Studies

  • An English Translation of a Sanskrit ‘Buddhist Yoga Manual’ from Kuca | Abstract

    This project will produce the first English translation of the “buddhistisches Yogalehrbuch” (YL), a ‘Buddhist Yoga Manual’ from Kuca, located on the Northern Silk Road of the Tarim Basin. Although the YL belongs to one of the major manuscript discoveries of the twentieth century, it has been almost entirely neglected, largely due to its having only received a translation into German. This is particularly lamentable as the YL outlines a unique meditation system that dramatically reshapes our understanding of Buddhist traditions in South, Central, and East Asia. Accounting for more recent research into associated Chinese meditation manuals and art from the region, our English rendering and comprehensive study shall reestablish the true significance of this forgotten work.

    Wen Zhao
    Wen Zhao

    Lecturer, Philosophy, Nankai University, China

    Henry Albery
    Henry Albery

    Postdoctoral Fellow, Institut für Indologie und Tibetologie, Ludwig Maximilians Universität München, Germany

    Ruixuan Chen
    Ruixuan Chen

    Assistant Professor, Buddhist Studies, Universität Heidelberg, Germany

    Constanze Pabst von Ohain
    Constanze Pabst von Ohain

    Assistant Professor, Institut für Indologie und Tibetologie, Ludwig Maximilians Universität München, Germany

  • Indian Epistemology of Perception in the context of the Buddhist-Brahmanic controversy. An Anthology of texts. Translations from Sanskrit into Russian, Preface, Texts, Historico-philosophical reconstructions, Footnotes, Dictionary of terms, and Indexes | Abstract

    Since perception is what we are relying upon for our knowledge of the external world, the question arises as to whether it reflects the world itself or our image of it? It is not surprising, taking in account the globalization process, involving different cultures and civilizations, that Western philosophers more and more turn to non-Western intellectual traditions to find new approaches to the problems that concern them today. Contemporary perception studies bring up many issues and questions that many centuries ago were examined at length by Indian Buddhist and Brahmanic philosophers. The Anthology provides a reliable academic source for an emerging interest in Indian and especially Buddhist ideas of perception among Russian philosophers and scientists.

    Victoria Georghievna Lysenko
    Victoria Georghievna Lysenko

    Professor, Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia

  • Sources of Buddhist Astral Science: Amoghavajra’s Xiuyao jing and Entsu’s Bukkokurekishohen | Abstract

    This project aims to bring to light two important texts that contribute to our understanding of the astral practices and tradition in East Asian Buddhism: Amoghavajra’s Xiuyao jing (759/764 CE) and Entsu’s Bukkokurekishohen (1810 CE). The Xiuyao jing is considered an authoritative text on the Japanese astral tradition (sukuyodo). At present only a corrupt edition (T1299) is available and a proper edition based on the Japanese manuscripts is needed. Entsu's Bukkokurekishohen is arguably the most comprehensive work within the East Asian tradition on Buddhist cosmology, astronomy, and calendrics, with commentaries on the Xiuyao jing and other Buddhist astral texts. The project aims to produce an annotated English translation of these two texts, together with a critical edition of both.

    Bill Mak
    Bill Mak

    Associate Professor, Hakubi Center of Advanced Research / IRH, Kyoto University, Japan

  • The Eighth century Schøyen fragments of the Mulasarvastivada Vinaya | Abstract

    This project brings together an international collaborative team with expertise in Buddhist manuscripts, palaeography, and the Mulasarvastivada vinaya (MSV) in order to sort, transcribe, study and catalog a set of unique eighth century birch bark manuscript fragments presently held in the Schøyen Collection in Oslo. The manuscript contains various portions of the MSV Bhaisajyavastu (‘Chapter on Medicine’) and Uttaragrantha (‘The concluding/superior scripture’), part of the former and the entire body of the latter having until recently been considered lost in Sanskrit.This collaborative project will for the first time make the preserved Sanskrit text of these sections available for editing, translation, comparison, and in-depth study.

    Jens E. Braarvig
    Jens E. Braarvig

    Professor Emeritus, Cultural Studies and Oriental Languages, University of Oslo

    Jens Wilhelm Borgland
    Jens Wilhelm Borgland

    Lecturer, History of Religion, Uppsala Universitet, Sweden

    Kazunobu Matsuda
    Kazunobu Matsuda

    Professor, Buddhist Studies, Bukkyo University

    Gudrun Melzer
    Gudrun Melzer

    Researcher, Institut für Indologie und Tibetologie, Ludwig Maximilians Universität München, Germany

    Fumi Yao
    Fumi Yao

    Assistant Professor, Waseda Institute for Advanced Study, Waseda University, Japan