Filed in 2016, 2016, Fieldwork, Fieldwork & Internship, News by on May 25, 2016

We are now calling for participants in Orang Asli Socio-Economics Malaysia Fieldwork (August 25~ Sept 3, 2016).

About the Fieldwork

The Orang Asli (OA) are the indigenous minority peoples of Peninsular Malaysia. The name is a Malay term which transliterates as ‘original peoples’ or ‘first peoples’. It is a collective term introduced by anthropologists and administrators for the (officially) 18 ethnic subgroups generally classified for official purposes under Negrito, Senoi and Proto-Malay. They numbered closed to 200,000 in 2015 representing a mere 0.6 per cent of the national population (30 million). Being a minority group their wellbeing and social-economics status is among the lowest in the country. Among the issues impeding the OA progress to be at par with the average national level achievement are education, economy (which include land rights), health, and culture and indigenous knowledge preservation.

This fieldwork provides a good opportunity for students to identify and learn how these issues are affecting the local OA community. The selected community for this fieldwork is a small Orang Asli village from the Semai tribe with a population of about 300-400 people, located in the state of Perak which is about 3 hour drive either from Penang (North) or from Kuala Lumpur (South). Students will have firsthand experience in interacting with the local OA community to gather data/information on specific issues, and there will be a day (The National day) allocated for community engagement activities which will include traditional sports/games, mutual assistance task or “gotong-royong” for food preparation, and many more.

Prior to the fieldwork, students will be briefed with the OA background, history and the various government and NGO initiatives to improve their livelihood and socio-economic status. During the fieldwork, students will have a chance to meet and interact with the local people. These local “experts” insights should help the students either to reinforce or correct their initial impressions about the issues impeding the OA socioeconomic progress. The main theme of the fieldwork is to think and discuss the effective ways of how to improve the livelihood of the local OA community based on the collected & analyzed data and especially to provide recommendations for the village administrative entity to plan or implement the proposals. The topics to be studied in the fieldwork include (but not limited to) education, entrepreneurship, sustainable environment, preservation of local knowledge and heritage, and ICT communication info-structure of the community.

Locations: 1) Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang and 2) the Orang Asli Tangkai Cermin Village, Perak, Malaysia

Date: August 25 – September 3, 2016

Language Requirement: English

Target : The fieldwork is for both undergraduate and graduate students from EBA partner
universities and from Keio University.

Schedule (subject to changes)

August 25 Arrive in Penang, Malaysia and stay at USM
August 26 Workshop at USM
August 27 Workshop at USM 
August 28 Excursion and travelling for the fieldwork and stay at Kampung Gajah, Perak
August 29 Fieldwork – Day 1
August 30 Fieldwork – Day 2 
August 31 National Day Carnival at the Orang Asli Tangkai
Cermin VillageReturn to USM, Penang 
September 1 Workshop at USM
September 2 Workshop at USM and Final Presentations
September 3 Leave Penang, Malaysia

How to apply: (for Keio students)

Both undergraduates and graduate students (who are able to communicate in English) are eligible for the program. All you have to do is:

  • Fill out APPLICATION FORM (from: http://goo.gl/vmX1TK) in English
  • Write an 300-word essay stating your interest in the theme of the fieldwork (either in English or Japanese)
  • Grade report of the previous year (前学年成績表) to apply for JASSO* scholarship (Only applied to Japanese citizens: 日本国籍の学生のみ申請可能)

Then submit the materials to eba-submit@ml.keio.jp with subject: “Malaysia Fieldwork 2016 Application- Your Name”. The deadline is 23:59 JST,  June 12th, 2016 (Sunday). Screening result will be announced in the following week.

Keio students should cover the airplane ticket fee on your own. However, the good news for Japanese students is, if selected, you are also eligible to apply for JASSO scholarship (70,000 JPY) which should help cover part of your Fieldwork related expenses.

In addition to the airplane ticket fee, EBA committee will collect participation fee. For now, the participation fee has not been decided yet as the preparation work is still undergoing. However, it should be around JPY 30,000 ~ JPY 50,000 (that covers your accommodation, local transportation, part of the food costs, and other services during the trip).

*JASSO scholarship: For further information about Jasso scholarship, please refer to the following URL (P.9~12)


  For more information, please contact us via email at eba-info@ml.keio.jp

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