Since the end of the Cold War, Japan's security environment has changed significantly. While the United States is still Japan's most important security partner, the nature of the partnership has changed as a result of new demands from the United States, but also due to new challenges for Japan such as the North Korean nuclear program and the rise of China. Moreover, the Japanese government and foreign policy establishment have been confronted with new, „non-traditional“ security threats such as international terrorism, the spread of infectious diseases, and global environmental threats. At the same time, on the domestic level, neo-liberal economic reforms, demographic change and the consequences of economic globalization put into question the sustainability of the current Japanese lifestyle and lead to a heightened sense of insecurity among many Japanese.
The conference will expand the standard discussions on security in Japan by bringing together people from both the study of international relations and Japanese domestic politics, economy and society. Conference panels will address issues of „traditional“ security policy, i.e. military security, and newly arising issues of regional security arrangements, but will also take a closer look at the security implications of economic globalization, such as environmental and energy security. The conference will address these issues by looking at domestic Japanese and international discourses about security and insecurity as well as related general debates in international relations.
By doing so, the conference aims at providing new insights into Japanese and international discourses on security as well as the ways in which security is conceptualized in Japan. By bringing together experts from various fields and institutions from Japan, Germany, and Europe, the conference also offers rare comparative insights.
Language of the conference is English.