The chapters for this volume were prepared over a period of six years at the Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU), Japan. When APU was established in April 2000, the founding President, Professor Sakamoto Kazuichi (1998), established the vision of promoting a body of knowledge that has come to be known as Asia Pacific Studies. With the establishment of the Graduate School of Asia Pacific Studies in 2004, it became crucial that the discipline be realised in the teaching and research of students and faculty. As a founding faculty member of APU and the Graduate School, in addition to succeeding as the second Director (after Professor Sakamoto Kazuichi) of the Ritsumeikan Center for Asia Pacific Studies (RCAPS – 2001 to 2004), I found myself at the forefront to develop this new body of discipline. The course on the ‘Changing Social Landscapes in the Asia Pacific’ became one of the many courses at the Graduate School that I experimented with in order to help evolve this body of knowledge among graduate students. The study of social landscapes already exists as a discipline within the social sciences. Undertaken by sociologists, geographers, urban planners, architects, and historians, it is a developed multidisciplinary field of study. Thus, the basic approaches to the field are well-established and taught at many graduate schools. But teaching this established field with a focus towards developing a new body of Asia Pacific Studies posed a challenge to this author and the students who came to study at APU. After muddling through various experimentations at curriculum design, the course came to a definitive framework of teaching and guiding students to write papers that could incorporate the existing social landscape theoretical perspectives and developing the new Asia Pacific Studies.