Dr. Ivan Small first became interested in Vietnam during a family visit in 1993. Fascinated with the social and cultural transformations that have accompanied the rapid pace of capitalist transformation, Ivan has continued to be professionally and academically engaged with Vietnam over a twenty-year period. After completing a Masters degree at Columbia University in international affairs, Ivan worked in New York City for the Ford Foundation and World Policy Institute, before going on for a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology and Southeast Asian studies at Cornell University.
As a Fulbright-Hays fellow and visiting researcher at Vietnam National University Ho Chi Minh City from 2007 to 2009, Ivan conducted research on the changing social and material dynamics of migration and remittance economies. His current research is on emerging consumption patterns related to such flows. Ivan has also been a study leader, academic director, and instructor for various study programs in Vietnam, China, India, Thailand, and Japan, including Dragons experiential education programs, the School for International Training, the Council for International Educational Exchange, The New School, and Smithsonian Journeys. Since 2012 Ivan has been a postdoctoral fellow in the Institute for Money, Technology & Financial Inclusion and Department of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine.