The Global Japan Studies (GJS) Network

The increased mobility of students and researchers that globalization has made possible also makes imperative the regular re-examination of our understanding of what constitutes “Japan Studies.” What is the status quo facing non-Japanese researchers who work on Japan outside the Japanese geographical locale, and researchers who work on Japan-related topics within Japan? What are the most pressing challenges for the future? The Professional Committee for Global Japan Studies was established by the Global Campus initiative at the University of Tokyo for the purpose of addressing exactly these questions. The Committee concluded that to improve the quality and effectiveness of communications between these two groups two important steps needed to be taken, namely the founding of a research network through which Japan Studies-related information could be disseminated, and the creation of a new multilingual undergraduate program at the University of Tokyo. The Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia will be responsible for developing the research network, and the Faculty of Law for the development of the undergraduate program. Both initiatives will receive full administrative support from the Division of International Affairs at the University and work with the Network for Education and Research on Asia (ASNET), which has been promoting collaborative research in the wider Asian sphere from its home at the Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia for the past thirteen years.

Professor Haneda Masashi
(Vice President, the University of Tokyo)

Greeting From the Global Japan Studies Network Head

Departments of Japanese Studies all over the world house numerous scholars whose research spans broad disciplinary boundaries. Despite the many advances made by these scholars, they are frequently better known in their home countries than within the scholarly community in Japan. Many Japanese researchers working on Japan-related topics in Japan tend to recognize themselves first by their disciplinary affiliation rather than thinking of themselves as specialists in Japan Studies per se. The Global Japan Studies Network aims to form a bridge between researchers who work on Japan-related topics at Japanese institutions, and their counterparts at universities outside Japan. The Network will collaborate with visiting researchers to promote their research and educational activities and facilitate publication of their work in a dedicated journal. Our goal is to contribute to continued sustained and rigorous development in the field on a global basis.

Professor Fujiwara Kiichi
(Faculty of Law and GJS Network Head)