Dr. Ian Baker holds a PhD in History and a MPhil in Medical Anthropology from University College London, following earlier graduate work in Buddhist Studies at Columbia University and English Literature at the University of Oxford. He is the author of seven critically acclaimed books on Himalayan and Tibetan cultural history, environment, art, and medicine including, Tibetan Yoga: Principles and Practices, The Dalai Lama’s Secret Temple, The Heart of the World, The Tibetan Art of Healing, and Buddhas of the Celestial Gallery, with introductions by the H.H. the Dalai Lama and Deepak Chopra. He was lead curator for an exhibition at London’s Wellcome Collection entitled “Tibet’s Secret Temple: Body, Mind, and Meditation in Tantric Buddhism”. He is well known for his extensive field research in Tibet’s ‘hidden-lands’ (beyul), resulting in National Geographic Society designating him as an ‘Explorer for the Millennium’. He has led international groups in Tibet, Nepal, and Bhutan for Smithsonian Institution and National Geographic Expeditions and is a board member of the International Society for Bhutan Studies.
Tibet House US was founded at the request of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who at the inauguration in 1987 stated his wish for a long-term cultural institution to ensure the survival of Tibetan civilization and culture, whatever the political destiny of the six million people of Tibet itself.