Ian Rowen Portrait
Ph.D. 2016 • M.A. 2012
Human Geography

Areas of interest: China, Taiwan, cultural politics, geopolitics, social media, tourism
Faculty Advisor: Timothy Oakes


2012 - Chinese Tourists in Taiwan: Tourism and State Territoriality

2016 - The Geopolitics of Tourism: mobilities, territory and protest in Taiwan and China.

Research Interests

My research has largely focused on the cultural and political geography of travel and tourism between the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan. Treating tourism as a political technology, I pay particular attention to the sociolinguistic performance of state territory and ethno-national membership. This project stems from 10 years of life/work experience in the region, and has been supported with several NSF grants and a Fulbright Fellowship. Before joining CU Boulder, I worked as a translator, journalist, musician, tour guide, hotelier and entrepreneur, and received a B.A. with honors in a double major of Mathematics and East Asian Studies (Chinese) from UC Santa Cruz in 2001.

Future research directions include Internet use and ideology in China and southeast Asia, and social media’s impact on self and state formation.

Selected Publications

Rowen, Ian. (2015). Inside Taiwan's Sunflower Movement: Twenty-Four Days in a Student-Occupied Parliament, and the Future of the Region. Journal of Asian Studies, Volume 74, Issue 01, 5-21.doi:10.1017/S0021911814002174

Rowen, I. (2014). Tourism as a territorial strategy: The case of China and Taiwan. Annals of Tourism Research, Volume 46, 62-74 . doi:10.1016/j.annals.2014.02.006

Publications updated July 2015