As London readies itself to host the 2012 Olympic Games amidst extensive discussion of what the legacy of the event will be, there is also a great deal of interest in similar topics in Tokyo as it prepares its bid to host the Games in 2020. The Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games were a key part of the development of Japan in the context of its post-war recovery and had an important role in how the city came to be as it is today.
This historical story will be addressed by Prof Yasushi Aoyama, Professor at the Graduate School of Governance Studies of Meiji University, Tokyo, and former Vice-Governor of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. Prof Aoyama will also provide a Japanese perspective on the London 2012 Games as part of considering what the role of the Olympic Games can and should be in the future, considering the Olympic movement’s interaction with problems facing cities around the world. His presentation will be responded to by Prof John Gold of Oxford Brookes University, who is the co-author of Olympic Cities City Agendas, Planning, and the World’s Games, 1896 to 2016 and an international authority on the history of urban festivals. Therefore this event will provide an intriguing range of perspectives on the impact of the Olympic Games in terms of politics, development and how cities evolve over time, whilst looking forward to see what positive role the Games can play in the future.
Date: 15th June 2012
Time: From 6:30 pm
Venue: JETRO London, Mid City Place, 71 High Holborn, London
This event is free but booking is essential.
To reserve a place, please contact email@example.com with your name, details and those of any guests before Wednesday 13th June.
It has been almost one year since the East Japan earthquake. As rebuilding goes on life goes on in Fukushima Prefecture, details of which can be read in the Fukushima International Association’s GYRO newsletter, here, with news on Chinese New Year events in the area, as well as snowboarding and the Shinobu Sanzan Akimairi Festival.
Also in the newsletter are the accounts of people living in the prefecture and their experience of life after the earthquake, tsunami and the incident at Fukushima Dai-ichi.
CLAIR supports the publishing of the newsletter.
Fukushima and Iwate Prefectures have published new details on efforts to recover from the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 2011. The newsletter for Fukushima Prefecture can be downloaded here, and Iwate Prefecture’s newsletters can be downloaded here and here.
Iwate and Fukushima Prefectures’ International Divisions have published English language versions of their post earthquake and tsunami recovery updates, detailing local government projects helping communities in the affected areas, rebuilding public facilities and infrastructure, and highlighting some of the natural beauty attractions in Tohoku which are still very much open to tourists.
There are also personal testimonies from people who survived the earthquake and tsunami. The updates from Iwate Prefecture can be seen here and here, and from Fukushima Prefecture here.
With the recovery under way in Tohoku, seven months after the Great North East Earthquake, Iwate Prefecture is sending out regular English updates on reconstruction and rebuilding of communities in the region.
Information on donating, communities and the current conditions can be found here and here.
JLGC Research and Partnerships Manager Andrew Stevens has an article at the Guardian‘s Local Government Network site, looking at the lessons English cities could learn from Japan in terms of devolution of economic development powers. The article looks at the designated cities system of Japan, where cities of 500,000 or more residents have enjoyed a greater degree of autonomy from upper-tier prefectural governments, also looking at the current debate in Japan about metropolitan government and what both sides could learn from each other.
Seven months after The Great East Japan Earthquake, Christopher and Phillida Purvis will report on a recent visit to Tohoku. During this trip they visited towns and villages throughout the region from Soma in the south to Kamaishi in the north. They spoke at length with government officials, staff from charitable and voluntary agencies, people running local businesses and other survivors of the disaster.
In this talk, they will share their impressions of life in the different places visited; report on the state of recovery and the task that still lies ahead; as well as present film footage and photographs taken during the trip. In particular, they will discuss the role of NPOs and local voluntary organizations in the recovery process and the way in which donations to the Japan Society Tohoku Relief Fund are being used to support them.
For booking details and more information on the speakers see the Japan Society page.
The following links to newsletters update the situation in North Eastern Japan, known in Japan as Tohoku, the region hit by the earthquake and tsunami in March. You can read the latest editions by NPOs and local government here for Fukushima, Iwate and Sendai City.
British Ambassador to Japan David Warren writes a personal blog on his recent trip to the coastal towns devastated by the tsunami. Included were visits to Kamaishi, Rikuzen-Takata and Kesennuma (in Miyagi Prefecture) to see the recovery and reconstruction work that is going on, and some of the organisations that may benefit from the £600,000 that the Japan Society has so far collected, which will be disbursed through the Sanaburi Foundation. You can read the article here.
The Asahi Weekly has recently carried a series of stories which focus on tourist destinations in Japan that are particularly popular among certain groups of foreign tourists. The first looks at why Hiroshima continues to draw American visitors, while Germans continue to flock to Tokushima a century after WW1 through its POW links. The secluded Koyasan in Wakayama continues to attract legions of French visitors, while unspoiled Takayama finds favour among the Spanish. The slopes of Hakuba in Nagano give a snow break to Australians, while Taiwanese flock to Tateyama for pretty much the same experience. Koreans now visualise themselves in the hanryu hotspots of Akita and Tottori, yet Chinese visitors are drawn to Hokkaido for movie tie-in locations. Finally the cradle of Japan-Mexico relations in Chiba finds a receptive audience among newly-weds.