The Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (APARC), a Stanford hub focused on the interdisciplinary study of contemporary Asia, has been awarded a commendation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, the country’s official government arm that conducts its foreign policy.
The annual award recognizes individuals and organizations that have promoted mutual understanding between Japan and the United States, and among other countries and regions. Shorenstein APARC, part of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, is one of four award recipients in the Bay Area and of 173 total recipients around the world.
“It is a great honor to receive an award given on behalf of the Japanese foreign minister,” said Gi-Wook Shin, director of Shorenstein APARC and professor of sociology. “We strive to advance research and dialogue between Japan and the United States, and this commendation serves to further motivate us in our efforts.”
The research center has a program that facilitates social science-oriented research on contemporary Japan, and convenes outreach activities closely tied to its research agenda.
In the past year, the center hosted 10 visiting fellows from Japan through its corporate affiliates program; a workshop in Tokyo with scholars and former government officials focused on the U.S.-Japan security alliance; and a public panel discussion at Stanford on U.S.-Japan relations in conjunction with the conferral of the Shorenstein Journalism Award.
Faculty and students also participated in the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Stanford in April 2015. Abe was the first prime minister of Japan to visit the university and spoke on innovation.
On Oct. 28, the award was presented to the center at a ceremony held by the Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco. Shorenstein APARC faculty and affiliates in attendance included Michael Armacost, Shorenstein APARC distinguished fellow and former U.S. ambassador to Japan; Donald Emmerson, FSI senior fellow emeritus; Thomas Fingar, Shorenstein APARC distinguished fellow; Takeo Hoshi, FSI senior fellow and director of Shorenstein APARC's Japan Program; Gi-Wook Shin; Daniel Sneider, associate director for research; Kathleen Stephens, the William J. Perry Distinguished Fellow; and Xueguang Zhou, professor of sociology.