Scholarly focus is Buddhist studies, particularly the early development of the cluster of Indian
Buddhist movements called the Mahayana and their transmission to China in the first few centuries of
the Common Era. Related interests include translation as a religious genre, with special focus on
the earliest translations of Buddhist texts into Chinese; Buddhist Middle Indo-Aryan, particularly
the role of Gandhari Prakrit in the earliest transmission of Buddhism to Central Asia and China;
art historical, epigraphical, and archeological materials as sources for the study of religion; and
history, theory, and methods in the academic study of religion.
Bodhisattvas of the Forest and the Formation of the Mahāyāna: A Study and Translation
of the Rāṣṭrapālaparipṛcchā-sūtra. Studies in the Buddhist Traditions. (Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 2008).
"The Pratītyasamutpādagāthā and Its Role in the Medieval Cult of the Relics," The
Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies 14.1 (1991) : 1-27.
"Sutra on the Merit of Bathing the Buddha," in Donald S. Lopez, Jr., ed., Buddhism in
Practice (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1995), 59-68; reprinted in Donald S. Lopez, Jr.,
ed., An Anthology of Asian Religions in Practice (Princeton: Princeton University Press,
"The Nagaropamasūtra: An Apotropaic Text from the Saṃyuktāgama. A Transliteration,
Reconstruction, and Translation of the Central Asian Sanskrit Manuscripts," In collaboration with
Gregory Bongard-Levin, Takamichi Fukita, and Klaus Wille in Sanskrit-Texte aus dem buddhistischen
Kanon: Neuentdeckungen und Neueditionen III. Sanskrit-Worterbuch der buddhistischen Texte aus den
Turfan-Funden, Beiheft 6 (Gottingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1996), 7-131.
"Gāndhārī and the Early Chinese Buddhist Translations Reconsidered: The Case of the
Saddharmapuṇḍarīkasūtra," Journal of the American Oriental Society 118.4 (1998) :
"On Hu and Fan Again: the Transmission of 'Barbarian' Manuscripts to China,"
The Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies 23.1 (2000): 7-28.
"Dharmarakṣa and the Transmission of Buddhism to China," in China at the Crossroads:
A Festschrift in Honor of Victor H. Mair. Special Issue of Asia Major, 3rd ser., 19, pts. 1-2 (2006): 13-37.
"Is There an Early Gandhāran Source for the Avalokiteśvara Cult?" Journal asiatique 296.2 (2008): 297-330.
"Sacrifice and Asceticism in Early Mahāyāna Buddhism," in Religion and Identity in South Asia and Beyond:
Essays in Honor of Patrick Olivelle. Edited by Steven E. Lindquist (New York, London, Delhi: Anthem Press, 2011), 197-224.
"What Do We Mean by 'Early' in the Study of the Early Mahāyāna-And Should We Care?" Bulletin of the
Asia Institute n.s. 23 (2013): 31-39.