Ien Ang is Distinguished Professor of Cultural Studies at the Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University, of which she was the founding director until 2014. She gained her PhD from the University of Amsterdam (the Netherlands).
Ien’s internationally acclaimed books include Watching Dallas: Soap Opera and the Melodramatic Imagination (1985), Desperately Seeking the Audience (1991) and On Not Speaking Chinese: Living Between Asia and the West (2001).
She has also been the co-author or co-editor of a number of books focusing on Australian multiculturalism and Asian-Australian cultural politics, including Alter-Asians: Asian-Australian Identities in Art, Media and Popular Culture (2000), The SBS Story (2008) and The Art of Engagement: Culture, Collaboration, Innovation (2011). Her current research focuses on the contemporary transformations in Sydney’s Chinatown in the context of the rise of China, in collaboration with the City of Sydney.
Ien is an elected fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and recently chaired a national expert working group on Asia Literacy, which resulted in the report Smart Engagement with Asia: Leveraging Language, Research and Culture, for the Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA), published in 2015.
Ien was born in Surabaya, Indonesia, and migrated to the Netherlands with her family when she was twelve, before relocating to Australia in 1991. She was one of the performers in the Performance 4A production Stories Then and Now in 2013.