30th Anniversary Essay Contest Reporting Meeting and Award Ceremony (“Milestone Summit”)

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    As part of its commemorative projects for the 30th anniversary, Toshiba International Foundation held an essay contest on the future of Japanese studies, jointly with the European Association for Japanese Studies (EAJS). (Note: The outline of the contest is written below) We received a total of 18 essays submission, and as a result of strict review by the EAJS and the Foundation, a total of 3 Grand Prizes winners and a total of 7 Awards of Excellence winners were determined.

    On November 26, 2019, TIFO held the Milestone Summit, an essay reporting meeting and award ceremony in Tokyo, having invited the three Grand Prize winners and the representatives of the EAJS.

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    Mr. Masashi Muromachi, Chairman, TIFO
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    Prof. Andrej Bekeš
    President, European Association for Japanese Studies
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    From left: Prof. Verena Blechinger-Talcott, EAJS Treasurer, Prof. Andrej Bekeš, Dr. Aike Peter Rots, Ms. Eiko Honda, Dr. Ioannis Gaitanidis, Mr. Muromachi, and Mr. Omori, TIFO President
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    Presentation by Dr. Ioannis Gaitanidis
    (Chiba University)
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    Presentation by Ms. Eiko Honda
    (University of Oxford)
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    Presentation by Dr. Aike Peter Rots
    (Universitetet i Oslo)

    List of the winners

    Name Affiliation Theme of essay
    Dr. Aike Peter Rots University of Oslo The Elusive Adjective:
    OvercomingMethodological Nationalism in Japanese Studies
    Dr. Ioannis Gaitanidis Chiba University The Future of Japanese Studies:
    Researching and Teaching Transnational Contingencies
    Eiko Honda University of Oxford Knowledge Without Supremacy:
    Japanese Studies in the Face of Global Ecological Crisis

    Name Affiliation Theme of essay
    Aya Hino Ca’Foscari University of Venice,
    Heidelberg University
    Cultivating ‘Informed’ Imagination
    Dr. Radu Alexandru Leca Heidelberg University Celebrating Hybridity with Critical Spirit
    Dr. Takahiro Yamamoto Heidelberg University Role-speak, Raw-materials, and many temporarities
    Dr. Bernhard Leitner University of Vienna Overcoming Japanese Studies – or on the Advantage and Disadvantage of Japanese Studies for Academia
    Dr. Michael Facius University College of London Future Tasks for Japanese Studies: A Personal Reflection
    Niklas Söderman Tallin University Looking for the Universal through the Particular and Vice Versa:
    Sarah Stark Gent University TIFO 30TH Anniversary Essay Contest

    Note) Grand Prize winners will receive 300,000 yen each for research and research incentives, and Award of Excellence winners will receive 100,000 yen.
    In addition, we will support the participation fee for the EAJS Conference held in Ghent, Belgium in the summer of 2020.

    Overview of 30th Anniversary Essay Contest

    In collaboration with the European Association for Japanese Studies (EAJS), an important partner in the development of next-generation human resources for promoting understanding of Japan, we invited essays for the future of Japanese studies from past participants in joint human resource development programs with the Association, and honored the winners.

    Theme: "The future of Japanese studies" (including the following three points)

    1. What do you see as the biggest opportunities and challenges for the field of Japanese Studies today?
    2. If you look at 2020 and beyond, what could be the future role and form of Japanese Studies
    3. How do you want to contribute to these developments?

    Application period: April 3rd to June 9th, 2019 (closed)

    Qualification requirements: Past participants of the EAJS / TIFO fellowship for doctoral researchers or Workshops during FY2008 and FY2018.

    Click here to the 30th anniversary website.

    Click here to details of the roundtable held during EAJS2021