Since the turn of the 21st century, a notable number of research institutes and university graduate programs in Japan devoted to “international/global Japanese studies” have been established.
At the same time, however, there was no common platform to enable these institutions to communicate directly with each other. As a result, they were left in virtual isolation and struggled for ways to introduce international/global Japanese studies into their research and educational programs.
Having considered the research community’s persisting needs, the International Research Center for Japanese Studies (Nichibunken) took the lead and proposed that steps be taken promptly to set up a platform that would facilitate mutual exchange.
With the aforesaid objective, Nichibunken held its first Preparatory Committee meeting for founding a consortium for global Japanese studies in 2016. In May 2017, the Committee organized a symposium titled “Why Global Japanese studies?.” Subsequently, the Consortium for Global Japanese Studies was officially launched in September 2017.
The Consortium for Global Japanese Studies is the first initiative of its kind in Japan to meet the needs of the universities and research institutes offering international/global Japanese studies programs and encourages liaison and facilitates mutual networking among members.
The Consortium aims, through participation in joint research meetings and international symposia on international/global Japanese studies, to serve as an intermediary body that connects the domestic research community with international research networks.
Moreover, the Consortium’s activities such as promotion of joint research and organization of international workshops are expected to contribute positively to building the academic foundation for international/global Japanese studies and nurture young scholars. The research outcomes will be made available regularly through databases for access from both Japan and overseas.