Tana Li

Dr Tana Li


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Personal profile

Research interests

Vietnamese society, economy and technology from 15th-19th centuries; Vietnamese historiography;  Regional trade and the history of ports in the South China Sea; overseas Chinese in Southeast Asia

Researcher's projects

I am currently involved in an ARC Linkage Project "Southeast Asia's global economy, climate and the impact of natural hazards from the 10th to 21st centuries”,  leded by James Warren of Murdoch University. This project undertakes the first broad investigation of the impacts of climate-related and other natural hazards (typhoons, floods, drought, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions) on the economy, society and history of Southeast Asia from the 10th century to the present. The project has close link with the MCRI project (Canada) and aims to reconstruct spatial, temporal and social patterns in vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate variability and natural hazards. I have been reading and sorting through the data on Vietnam and the southern coast of China from 10th to the 19th centuries.


I have been granted an award by the Chiang Chingkuo Foundation (Taiwan) on an interdisciplinary project "The Making of the Red River" (2014-2017). The project will be carried out by historians, geologists and GIS experts in Australia, Vietnam, France and Austria.




BA, MA (Peking University), Graduate Dip; PhD (ANU)


Director, Centre for the Study of the Southern Chinese Diaspora, School of Culture, History and Language, CAP, the Australian National University.

Co-editor, electronic journal "Chinese Southern Diaspora Studies"

Advisor, Institute of Southeast Asian Stuides, Peking University, China

Advisor, Centre for Maritime Studies, Guangdong Academy of Social Sciences, China

Fellow and Senior Fellow, Australian National University (Feb.2002-present);

Lecturer/ Senior lecturer, University of Wollongong (1994-Jan.2002);

Research Fellow, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore (1993-1994);

Lecturer, Peking University (1983–88);

Visiting Fellow, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Kyoto University (Sep 2008–Feb 2009).

Executive Board Member, The World Federation of Institutes and Libraries for Chinese Overseas Studies

Visiting Professor, Institute of Overseas Chinese Studies, Jinan University, Guangzhou, China.

Expertise Areas

  • Asian History


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