Press Release: The Inaugural Issue of AAPI Nexus Journal

UCLA Asian American Studies Center Launches New Journal on Policies, Practices and Community Research for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

((For a complimentary review copy of the first issue of AAPI Nexus, please see below.))

A new national journal by UCLA’s Asian American Studies Center focuses on policies, practices and community research to benefit the nation’s burgeoning Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. It is being launched as part of the Center’s year-long celebration of its 35th anniversary.

The new journal, AAPI Nexus: Asian American and Pacific Islander Policy, Practice, and Community, draws from professional schools and applied social science scholars as well as practitioners and public policy advocates with the explicit goal of reinvigorating Asian American Studies’ traditional mission of serving communities and generating practical research.

“I am hopeful that AAPI Nexus will contribute significantly to the development of applied social science and public policy research on Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans, much as our Center’s flagship publication, Amerasia Journal, has influenced historical, cultural and social science scholarship and creative expression for over three decades,” said Don Nakanishi, director of UCLA’s Asian American Studies Center, professor of education and Asian American Studies, and associate editor of the journal. “Scholars and students who are entering professional school disciplines such as law, public health, education, social welfare, urban planning and information studies, to name only a few, have much to contribute to understanding and helping our communities.”

“The journal seeks to strengthen the bridge between gown and town,” said Paul Ong, director of UCLA’s Ralph and Goldy Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies, professor of urban planning, social welfare, and Asian American Studies, and senior editor of the journal. “University research has been a tremendous resource to practitioners, elected officials and community leaders, and those in the community can help inform the university of what the important societal issues for research are. The journal is, as the name implies, the nexus that facilitates communication.”

“AAPI Nexus seeks articles that enlighten us on the magnitude and nature of the problems, and on the possibilities for intervention,” wrote Ong and Nakanishi in their “Message From the Editors.” “The goal is to help those pursuing social change to become more effective through a greater understanding. The journal will publish empirically based applied research. This includes articles analyzing the structures and processes that produce and reproduce socioeconomic inequalities, identify factors that empower people to overcome barriers and adversities, assess policies and programs relevant to AAPIS and evaluate the effectiveness of organizations, strategies, and actions.”

“We also believe that it is important to have voices closer to the community. The editorial board includes not only faculty, but also practitioners and public policy advocates. Our review process for articles includes readers from both the academy and the professions. We also created a regular section called the ‘Practitioner’s Essay,’ written by community and professional leaders. . . Our past experience also tells us that community-based organizations and advocacy groups want and need basic and timely statistics and analytical tools; consequently, we will have a regular ‘AAPI Almanac’ section.”

The first issue of AAPI Nexus examines the topic of community development by policy advocates and applied social scientists from across the nation..

Kil Huh, a Ph.D. candidate at Columbia University, and Lisa Hasegawa, executive director of the Washington, D.C.-based National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development, wrote the Practitioners Essay entitled, “An Agenda for AAPI Community Development,” and advised community-development organizations about incorporating market-based principles, while maintaining local control over the process.

Dean S. Toji, assistant professor in the department of Asian American Studies at California State University, Long Beach, and Karen Umemoto, associate professor of urban and regional planning at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, examined central issues of community development in Little Tokyo, a neighborhood adjacent to downtown Los Angeles that was once a bustling center of civic, economic, political and cultural life for Japanese immigrants and their second-generation offspring from the early 1900s to World War II.

Melany Dela Cruz, ccoordinator and research analyst with the Asian Pacific American Community Development Data Center with UCLA’s Asian American Studies Center, and Loh-Sze Leung, a staff member with the City of Los Angeles’ Community Development Department in Boyle Heights, wrote about opportunities for community-university partnerships and encourage Asian American Studies programs to send students into the community to help bridge the “town and gown” divide.

Douglas Miller and Douglas Houston, both researchers with the Ralph and Goldy Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies in the UCLA School of Public Policy and Social Research, contributed to the AAPI Alamanc action of the issue, and examined the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of Asian Americans living in distressed areas. The article provides current information on the racial/ethnic diversity, educational attainment, and poverty and employment rates of 14 disadvantaged Asian-American neighborhoods.

Grace Yoo, assistant professor of Asian American Studies at San Francisco State University, wrote about the efforts to save welfare for low-income Asian-American seniors and the role of national organizations.

AAPI Nexus is the second national journal of the UCLA Asian American Studies Center. Amerasia Journal, which the center has published since 1971, is considered to be the leading multidisciplinary scholarly journal in the field of Asian American Studies and one of the world’s most influential publications focusing on topics of race and ethnic relations.
Future issues of AAPI Nexus will focus on civil rights, voting, work force development, health, youth at risk, arts and cultural institutions, and other topics. Each issue will also include refereed articles that do not deal with the common theme.

The inaugural “Message from the Editors:┬áTo Serve, Help Build, and Analyze,” by Professors Ong and Nakanishi, as well information on submission of articles to the journal and members of the founding editorial board, can be found here.

For subscription and order inquiries, please email (aascpress@aasc.ucla.edu) or call (310.825.2968)