Our understandings of our origins are always a mixture of myth, legend and fragments of knowledge from archeology. What do we know of the origins of Japan, a country that believes in its uniqueness?
Change of direction at Asian Development Bank?
Could the Asian Development Bank be heading in a new direction under the prospective new leadership of Takehiko Nakao?
Clinton to China, "STOP IT"
"China and Japan are sliding towards war", wrote the Economist magazine on 19 January.
Japan's experiment in ethnic immigration
Japan's experiment in ethnic immigration -- inviting Latin Americans of Japanese ethnicity to settle in Japan -- has not been successful. The cocktail of samba and sushi did not blend.
Japan's comparative advantage
When you hear of the travails of companies like Sharp, Sony and Panasonic, it's hard not to descend into a state of “Japo-pessimism”.
But the Japanese economy does have a dynamic under belly...
Global education in Japan
In my four semesters from 2009 to 2011 teaching at Sophia University in Tokyo, I endeavoured to provide my students with a "global education". What does the term global education mean?
Challenges in Asia and the World: Democracy, Nationalism and Secularism
We are honored that Ambassador Kazuo Kodama, Deputy Permanent Representative of Japan to the UN, has shared with us his recent speech to the Japan America Society of Southern California.
There is perhaps no country more in need of innovative ideas than Japan. There must be a solution to its political paralysis and economic funk. But is Japan capable of an innovative future?
Japan's financial crisis
While Japan's financial crisis is still discussed and analysed for it many lessons, Gillian Tett's book, “Saving the Sun”, remains the reference.
Reflections on Japan
As I was leaving Japan, one year ago, I was interviewed by Emanuele Schibotto* on various aspects of the Japanese economy. The reflections are still very relevant today.
Divesting the Image of "Inscrutable Japanese"
Masahiko Agata, Vice Chairman of the English-Speaking Union of Japan, has some interesting thoughts to share with us on the "inscrutable Japanese".
Japan's muddled development cooperation
Japan received a right scolding from the OECD in its recent report on Japan’s development cooperation policies.
Japan's bribery problems
The OECD has recently issued a scathing report on Japan's efforts to fight bribery and corruption.
Japan's dysfunctional politics
Japan's triple crisis of earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster was an exceptional and unprecedented event. So why didn't Japan respond in an exceptional and unprecedented way?
Conflict in the East and South China Seas
This article, I originally wrote some time ago, is worth a read in light the Chinese/Japanese conflicts in the East China Sea
Wrong About Japan
"When I grow up I'm going to live in Tokyo".
Japan & Korea: a Tale of Two Countries
Over the past two decades, as Japan has gradually slipped down the OECD ladder in terms of GDP per capita, Korea has progressively climbed the same ladder. How could this happen?
Globalization and the challenges of our youth
This is the text of a speech that I delivered to a group of students at Tokyo's Keio University on 13 October, 2012.
Asian Century on Film
If you want to get a quick idea of what the Asian Century is all about, have a look at the Centennial Group's 12 minute video on Youtube (link below).
Japan in the Asian century
Japan is one of the major development success stories coming out of the post-War period. But how can Japan contribute to and benefit from this "Asian Century"?
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