The Mandala Projects
Conceived of by Professor Jim Lee of American University, the Mandala Projects represents a broad swathe of efforts the use new technologies and new research approaches to critical issues of the time. This mandala (an Indian word associated with the wheel of life) brings together many different aspects that make up the human experience. This tapestry here has four parts: international trade, environmental issues, conflict, and culture. Thus the Mandala Projects are differing efforts in differing combinations that unites these elements for teaching and research purposes. There are five Mandala Projects
They are various collections of case studies in the world of Trade & the Environment overlaps (TED), environmental conflict (ICE) and others. These case studies are done in conjunction with Professor Lee's graduate-level class SIS513, "Computer Applications in International Relations Research."
Yet the Mandala Projects are not limited to just students at American University. Professors and students from around the world have been able to connect to do projects, engage in video conferences, do distance learning programs, and conduct their own original research.
TED is a collection of categorical case studies begun in September 1992 that began with a focus on solely environmental issue, but not excluding the economic consequences of other social policy choices, such as culture, rights, or other issues. TED Cases include 28 categories that include both coded and reporting, organized into 6 clusters of information with extensive search and knowledge capabilities. There are over 700 TED cases studies.
ICE is a collection of 16 coded and reported categories of information on conflict and environment. There are about 125 ICE cases which also have search capabilities.
GC is the technology interface home of the Mandala Projects. On this site are ways to link to course syllabi, lists of participants, virtual conferences, the Digital Professor (DP) project, and more. Included here is WE-Town.
- Environment, Statistics and Policy (ESP): An effort link real world policy issues in the envvironemal community with approaches of the Mandala Projects including undertaking case guides, developing analytical tools, and or methods related issues]. This includes a paper on the losing efforts to find scientific evidence for global climate change problems.
- E-Town is a hypothetical community of web sites that have an international theme. They often focus on issues of interest to the major four areas of interest in the project. They also sue on-line web games to teach, provide international music samplers and commentary, provide proto-types of distance learning courses, among others.
- Environment & Crime: A cross-linked reference to the TED database focusing on international crime.
- Simulation of International Trade and Environment (SITE): The Simulation of International Trade and Environment (SITE) uses hypothetical or historical scenarios of dispute over trade and environment issues. SITE is part of the Trade Environment Database projects, directed by Dr. James Lee of the School of International Service at American University. TED has made available over 400 cases studies on trade and environment that provide a backdrop and context for the SITE simulations.