The Berkeley Group in Buddhist Studies offers an interdisciplinary program of study and research leading to a PhD degree in Buddhist Studies. The group, which cooperates closely with the Departments of South and Southeast Asian Studies (SSEAS) and East Asian Languages and Cultures (EALC), emphasizes the study of Buddhism in its many forms within its Asian historical and cultural context.

The Group emphasizes the study of Buddhist texts in their original languages, as well as the appreciation of the historical, social, and cultural milieux from which the Buddhist textual legacy emerged. At the same time, students in the PhD program are encouraged to broaden and deepen their understanding of Buddhist phenomena by incorporating archaeological, ethnographic, and visual materials and perspectives.

The goal of our program is not only to provide students with the linguistic, methodological, and conceptual skills to produce significant new research on Buddhist phenomena but also to have students bring their research into dialogue with ongoing issues and concerns in the humanities writ large.

The PhD program in Buddhist Studies is designed for students who intend to become scholars and teachers at the university level.