Kerry Japan summit


The Stimson Center's Japan program seeks to provide a dynamic platform for engaging in useful discussion and analysis on the security issues relevant to Japan and its alliance with the United States. We strive to provide empirically based, high-quality analyses in order to promote a clear understanding of Japanese politics and security issues in Washington DC as well as to facilitate professional exchanges between security policy experts in Japan and the US. In order to achieve these goals, the program engages in three core activities: policy-relevant research, outreach events, and visiting fellows.

Current Projects

Japan as a "Peace Enabler": Views from the Next Generation

At the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, Japan stands at an important juncture to reflect its postwar development as a peace-loving nation.  As Japan reaffirms its pledge to continue to augment its contribution to international peace, this year presents an opportune time to reflect on Japan's efforts in peacebuilding through the United Nations. The project "Japan as a 'peace enabler': Views from the Next Generation" aims to illuminate the evolution of Japan's contribution to international peace through the United Nations. Rising Japanese scholars and experts with first-hand experience in peacebuilding will engage with the policy community in Washington, DC to provide a platform for enhanced discussion and understanding between the two countries on Japan's contribution in this field. More>>

Voices from Japan: National Security Speaker Series

The Voices from Japan: National Security Speaker Series is an annual public symposium that aims to bring senior-level Japanese opinion leaders, who have extensive experience in Japan’s national security policy-making, to the United States in order to discuss how Japan intends to address the various security challenges it faces today. The series was successfully launched with inaugural speaker the Honorable Yoshihiko Noda, the 95th Prime Minister of Japan, on October 1st. On June 3, 2014, General Ryoichi Oriki (ret., Japan Ground Self-Defense Force), the 3rd Chief of Staff of Joint Staff spoke at Stimson, followed by the Honorable Itsunori Onodera, the 12th Minister of Defense of Japan, on September 9, 2015. In subsequent years, Stimson’s Japan program will continue to invite Diet members, former senior government officials and opinion leaders who can articulate the challenges Japan faces and how Japan intends to tackle them. 

US-Japan-Australia Security Cooperation: Prospects and Challenges

In collaboration with the Australia National University and Canon Institute for Global Studies, the project seeks to: (1) contribute new research and analysis on the prospect of US-Japan-Australia trilateral security cooperation, and (2) make pragmatic policy recommendations to the national security establishment in the United States, Japan, and Australia. The final report was released in April 2015 at a publication launch event in Washington, DC. 

Kato Prize Partnership

Stimson's Japan program is proud to partner with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Center for a New American Security, the Brookings Institution, and the Council on Foreign Relations in celebrating the Kato Prize. More>>

Recent Research 

Japan's Global Diplomacy: Views From The Next Generation

The project aims to identify key relationships emerging under Prime Minister Abe's "diplomacy that takes a panoramic view of the world map" (chikyuugi wo fukan suru gaiko) initiative and seeks to promote the policy-relevant work of rising Japanese scholars working on these issues among the Washington, DC policymaking community. Project participants will examine Japan-Australia relations, Japan-India relations, Japan-Europe relations, and Japan-Russia relations. More>>

Japan's Challenges In East Asia: Views From The Next Generation

The project aims to illuminate the security challenges Japan faces in East Asia, while promoting policy analyses by rising Japanese scholars. Project participants are Dr. Ken Jimbo, Dr. Junya Nishino, Professor Yasuyo Sakata, and Dr. Chikako Kawakatsu Ueki. More>>

Opportunities Out of Necessity-Implication of US Defense Spending Cuts on the US-Japan Alliance

Defense spending cuts are inevitable in the US.  However, Washington must be extremely careful in managing its relationship with its allies in the Asia-Pacific region, while it debates spending cuts at home.  If managed poorly, the debate over US defense-spending reductions will be perceived as signs of US isolationism, disengagement in Asia, and a reduced commitment to the US-Japan alliance.  Utilizing the analyses on how US defense spending cut impact US capabilities that are relevant for the US-Japan alliance, this project aims to encourage the two allies to engage in constructive strategic dialogue in an era of austerity. More>>

The Strategic Impact of a Shifting Nuclear Security Consciousness in Japan

Japanese citizens as well as policymakers have long nurtured a general "allergy" to robust military capabilities, particularly nuclear weapons.   Although provocations by North Korea have developed a sense of insecurity that leads them to question Japan's non-nuclear status quo,  the meltdown at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant following the GEJE has dramatically revived Japan's "nuclear allergy." Mindful of these two opposing trends, this project examined the impact of recent shifts in nuclear security consciousness in Japan.

Great Eastern Japan Earthquake: "Lessons Learned" for Japanese Defense Policy

This report, written by Yuki Tatsumi, documents the challenges faced by the JSDF related to its capabilities: from C4ISR (command and control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) to logistics, and even the JSDF's capability to respond to nuclear accidents.  More>>

The New Nuclear Agenda: Prospects for US-Japan Cooperation

This edited volume examines the prospects for enhanced cooperation between Tokyo and Washington, and makes the argument for addressing nuclear issues through a more intergrated approach, so that the United States and Japan can help shape the global nuclear future. More>>

Prior Research

Since 1999, Stimson's Japan Program has a track record of conducting policy-relevant research on the issues salient to the US-Japan alliance. The Program's past publications include:

Visiting Fellows Program for Japan

The  Visiting Fellows Program for Japan focuses on facilitating person-to-person exchange between security policy professionals in Japan and the United States. Our exchange program targets mid-career professionals from national security institutions, academia, and news organizations, and invites them to spend 2-3 months at the Stimson Center to conduct targeted research on public policy issues related to US-Japan relations.  Stimson plans to continue this program and host Visiting Fellows from Japan at least twice a year. 
Click here to the complete list of previous visiting fellows from Japan.








Commentaries and Media Appearances   

Click here to the complete list of analyses and commentaries