One of Japan's most effective leaders, Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto has guided some of the most important developments in modern Japanese history, from improving trade and security relations with the United States to implementing crucial deregulation policies and administrative reforms. The regulatory reforms enacted during his term as prime minister - in the areas of administration, fiscal and economic structure, social security, and education - remain the most important items on the current Japanese political agenda.
In his first-ever Stanford address, Prime Minister Hashimoto will consider the changes under way in Japan with the candor and insight that only a former head of state can offer. The return to prominence of Hashimoto's Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) - after a September 2005 landslide victory - only increases the timeliness of his perspective.
Ryutaro Hashimoto is an experienced policy expert. He served two years as prime minister of Japan and thirteen terms in the House of Representatives. He has held a number of important cabinet posts, including minister of finance and minister of international trade and industry. As prime minister, Hashimoto tackled such pressing domestic issues as administrative reform and deregulation. He also made significant gains on the diplomatic front, and through summit meetings with U.S. President Bill Clinton, reinforced the bilateral security arrangements on which the post-Cold War Japan-U.S. alliance is founded. Since leaving office in 1998, Prime Minister Hashimoto has served as senior adviser to Prime Minister Koizumi, senior advisor for Administrative Reform Promotion at the LDP headquarters, and Minister of State for Administrative Reform.