Asiatica Association

Database of Buddhist Temples in Taiwan

6 may 2009, archived in resources

It is my pleasure to post info on a new resource, which has ben written by Dr. Marcus Bingenheimer, Director of the Library and Information Center at Dharma Drum Buddhist College in Taiwan:

Dharma Drum Buddhist College has published a new resource. Those of you doing research on Taiwanese history and religion might be interested in our database of Buddhist temples in Taiwan.

What you find at this website is an interface that lets you query the location of temples in various ways, get historical information about them and access an image database. Since part of the data is also referenced in time it is possible to construct queries such as: show which Buddhist temples existed in Taipei in 1900. Since we mostly cater to a Chinese-reading audience so far the interface is in Chinese only.

The project is at the end of its second year and has one more year to add material, correct mistakes and internationalize the interface. As of April 30th, we have geo-referenced 4626 Buddhist sites. For about 1009 of these we know the foundation date. For 520 we offer short descriptions. More than 1000 CC-licensed images are available for 130 temples. I do not know of any larger database of its kind.

Technically, the database is unexciting: it is built as a LAMP stack and  makes heavy use of the Google Maps API. For those in Japan or Korea whose cell-phones can read matrix codes, we offer the locations for 1847 temples in QR-code on the website.

The raw data of this project will - very probably - be made public once the project is concluded next year. Here  you can find a short English descriptions of other digital collections - large and small - in the field of Buddhist studies.

For more info:
Dr. Marcus Bingenheimer
Director, Library and Information Center
Dharma Drum Buddhist College
No. 2-6 Xishihu, Jinshan  20842, Taipei County, Taiwan, R.O.C.