On April 15, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation hosted a panel discussion on “How Japan Matters for America in the Indo-Pacific”, celebrating the launch of the 3rd edition of “Japan Matters for America/America Matters for Japan” (JMA/AMJ).
In collaboration with the East West Center, SPF started the JMA/AMJ project in 2009 as a part of “Asia Matters for America” initiative, which has been developed by Dr. Satu Limaye, Director of East West Center in Washington. DC. The JMA/AMJ publication is written in both English and Japanese, and provides readers with information about the bilateral connections between Japan and the U.S. through the alliance, trade, jobs, investment, tourism, education, population, and sister city relationships. Data for the booklet has been collected from extensive research at the state, city, and local levels. Along with the JMA/AMJ booklet, an updated and interactive website on state and congressional district information is also available.
At this event, we introduced the new edition of JMA/AMJ, and had a panel discussion on U.S. relationships with the region especially focusing on Japan, Australia and ASEAN. By examining these regional relationships with the U.S., we can also see unique characteristics and similarities through the “Asia Matters for America” series, and the panel also discussed how Japan, Japan-U.S. relations, and the Japan-U.S. alliance matters in the region.
The panelists includes Dr. Satu Limaye and three Japanese experts of international relations in the Indo-Pacific region; Prof. Mie Oba from Tokyo University of Science, Dr. Ryo Sahashi from University of Tokyo, and Dr. Tomohiko Satake from National Institute for Defense Studies.
International Peace and Security Department
At the summit meeting on June 12, 2018, the US and North Korea had agreed to “denuclearize the Korean Peninsula”; however, North Korea has yet to demonstrate its action to abandon its nuclear weapons.MORE...
While denuclearization of North Korea is one of the popular new topics and we are often blinded by idealism by which disarmament and denuclearization can be achieved, we once again need to think about concrete processes to realize denuclearization. In addition, we need to realize that realistic thought and understanding of military and weapons are necessary to promote that process.
On October 2, 2018, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation organized the open forum and invited the following experts to discuss what is necessary to realize North Korean denuclearization in light of US experiences on the Iranian denuclearization agreement.
Mr. Robert Einhorn, Senior Fellow, Brookings Institute
H.E. Mrs Tomomi Inada, a member of the House of Representatives, Former Defense Minister of Japan
Prof. Ken Jimbo, Professor, Department of Policy Management, Keio University
Mr Bonji Ohara, Senior Fellow, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation
On October 1, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation hosted Mr. Richard Fontaine, President of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).
Mr. Fontaine is a distinguished expert on American Foreign Policy. He served as foreign policy advisor to Senator John McCain for more than five years, and worked at the State Department, the National Security Council and on the staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
The Indo-Pacific region is undergoing geopolitical changes that will transform the region for generations to come. Both Washington and Tokyo are struggling to respond, and to do so in a way that promotes their common interests, strengthens the Japan-U.S. alliance, and remains consonant with domestic politics in each country. How is Washington thinking about the Indo-Pacific region today, and about Japan-U.S. relations within it? How should both Washington and Tokyo collaborate to enhance their own ties, deepen the prospects for peace, and strengthen the rules-based regional order?
Having two Japanese experts; Mr. Hiroki Sugita from Kyodo News as a moderator, and Prof. Ryo Sahashi from Kanagawa University as a commentator, we explored those critical question for the region, and Japan-U.S. relations.
On August 28, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation hosted Prof. James G. McGann of University of Pennsylvania and Prof. Kent E. Calder of Johns Hopkins University.
Prof. McGann is a leading expert of think tanks studies, researching not only think tanks in the United States but also in many other countries. His annual “Global Go To Think Tank Index Report” (Pennsylvania University), which examines more than 6,000 think tanks in the world, has been receiving greater attention through the world now, and he has also just published his new book Think Tanks, Foreign Policy and the Emerging Powers (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018). Prof. Calder is a well-known expert on Japanese politics and International Political Economy. He also has published a lot of books including Asia in Washington (Brookings Institution Press, 2014), and also has been involved in many projects of think tanks both in the United States and Japan.
With increased information and communication tools, rapidly changing technological and international landscape, the think tanks have expanded its role and importance in the world in the past decades. Currently, we can see a lot of different types of the think tanks from autonomous to government affiliate having different functions, depending on the different political systems and the environment of civil society. It is reported that the think tanks have now more influence in the emerging powers, such as India and China. On the contrary, in the United States, the decline of the influence and the raison d’etre of think tanks in Washington D.C. is also argued under the Trump administration where the President himself and his closer staff have made many important policy decisions without much consultation with policy makers.
In the rapidly changing world environment and United States, what will be the role of the think tanks for the future, what will be the necessary changes to tackle with the new challenges, Prof. McGann and Prof. Calder discussed from a broader perspective including the future Japan-U.S. relations and the role of Japan.
The Sasakawa Peace Foundation held a public panel discussion on July 17, 2018.
Ms. Jessica N. Grounds and Ms. Kristin Haffert, Co-founders of Mine the Gap from the United States, a prominent consultant company specializes in supporting gender-inclusive environment, attended the discussion and shared their views and experiences.
A day after Donald Trump was elected as the U.S. President, five million American women took to the streets and participated in the “Women’s March” to affirm their bold message of resistance and self-determination, which spread all around the world. Soon after, #MeToo movement became the global crusade against sexual harassment and assault, and is having a huge impact on American politics in the lead-up to the midterm elections.
With this background, we discussed the impact of such women’s movement in politics in the era of Trump, and necessary actions that could promote gender equality in political sphere.
[Related Link]https://www.spf.org/en/seminar/list/20180619.htmlMs. Kristin Haffert & Ms. Jessica N. Grounds Co-founder, Mine the Gap.MORE...
Kristin Haffert is an expert in women’s leadership and initiatives to advance gender equality. For more than two decades Kristin has conducted research, created practical tools, and delivered gender-related initiatives to more than 100 countries. Kristin founded the women and gender equality team at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) in 2002. Her award-winning work on gender equality, and work with political parties, makes her a go-to adviser globally to build and grow gender-inclusive workplaces.
Jessica Grounds is recognized as a thought leader in the space of women’s leadership. Jessica was named to Marie Claire's List of 50 Most Influential Women and recognized by Campaigns & Elections magazine as a Top 50 Political Influencer. She is the Co-Founder and former Executive Director of Running Start, a U.S. based organization training young women to run for elected office. She has worked on the campaigns of hundreds of women seeking elected office in the United States including working twice for Hillary Clinton. Jessica is a prominent speaker globally on gender and women's leadership.
The Sasakawa Peace Foundation organized a public seminar featuring Dr. Aaron L. Friedberg, Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs, Princeton University on November 1, 2017.
Professor Friedberg is a distinguished scholar in international politics who served as a Deputy Assistant for National Security Affairs in the Office of the Vice President from 2003 to 2005. He has published a lot of books and papers, including Beyond Air–Sea Battle: The Debate Over US Military Strategy in Asia (Adelphi series, 2014), and A Contest for Supremacy: China, America, and the Struggle for Mastery in Asia (Norton, 2011).
Recently, He also contributed a special monograph for the SPF entitled “The Authoritarian Challenge: China, Russia and the Threat to the Liberal International Order”.* In this monograph, he examines the deeply rooted factors driving China and Russia to adopt aggressive policies challenging the existing international order and western values, including the resentment, ambition and insecurity of their regimes.
In the course of the seminar, based on the argument of his monograph, Professor Friedberg llustrated the strategies both authoritarian countries have taken in order to survive and preserve their political power, and the implications for the United States and Japan.
* Under the Japan-U.S. Program, the SPF has published a series of special monographs, inviting the distinguished scholars and experts who have been cooperating on various projects of our program as authors. This series aims to raise awareness a wide range of academic and policy topics important to Japan-U.S. relations. PDF file of Professor Friedberg’s monograph is available on our website.
On the October 5th, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation and the U.S.-Japan Council hosted a panel discussion with six distinguished Asian American state legislators from diverse backgrounds who were participating in the 2017 Asian American Leadership Delegation (AALD) program. The AALD program is funded by the Sasakawa Peace Foundation and implemented by the U.S.-Japan Council, with support from the National Asian Pacific American Caucus of State Legislators.
The AALD program gives selected state-elected Asian American officials the opportunity to visit Japan for one week to meet and exchange ideas with Japanese political, governmental, business and community leaders at both the national and local levels. It aims to enhance mutual understanding and network building between Japan and the United States.
During the panel discussion, which was moderated by renowned journalist Aiko Doden, delegates talked about their respective political and personal journeys in the United States. Many of the delegates this year have followed non-traditional paths, choosing to become a politician after pursuing different careers. The audience had the opportunity to learn about their personal choices, as well as the important role Asian American politicians play in their political arenas, especially in light of current events. The speakers also reflected upon their week-long experience in Japan.
2017.10.27upDr. Seyed Abbas Araghchi contributed significantly to the establishment of Japan - Iran relations as the Ambassador to Japan from 2007 to 2011. In his recent visit to Japan as the Deputy Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran, he held energetic talks with Japan's political and economic leaders. Despite his busy schedule, he kindly accepted our request for an interview.
2017.10.10upJakarta is one of the world's mega cities with the population of ten million. We interviewed Dr. Anies Baswedan, who is set to become the Governor of on 16th October 2017. At the age of 38, he became Indonesia's youngest-ever University Rector. He then went on to serve as the Minister of Education and Culture for two years from 2014 to 2016 under the current government led by President Joko Widodo. We asked him his hopes and ambitions about building a closer cooperative tie between Jakarta and its sister city, Tokyo, and tackling various challenges the city faces as the new Governor of Jakarta.
2017.07.13upNortheast India including the State of Nagaland is home to some 400 ethnic groups, and Nagaland shares its borders with Myanmar, China, Bhutan, Nepal and Bangladesh. It has fostered unique cultures and customs despite adverse turns of history. We interviewed Nagaland's prominent peace activist, Mr. Niketu Iralu, whose calm demeanor reflects his in-depth wisdom and resilient strength, developed through overcoming numerous hardships.
- Japan–U.S. Program
- International Peace and Security
- Pacific Island Nations Program
- Asia Peace Initiatives
- Asia Social Integration
- Gender Investment and Innovation
- Sasakawa Japan–China Friendship Fund
- Middle East and Islam Program
- North America
- Northeast Asia
- Southeast Asia
- South Asia
- Middle East
- Africa and Latin America