Thursday, June 8, 2017

Japanese-English Toastmasters Club Open House on Friday, June 16

The Japanese-English Toastmasters Club would like to invite any interested students or faculty to their Open House on Friday, June 16 from 6-8pm at the Japan America Society in Washington, DC.

The Japanese-English Toastmasters is a club dedicated to improving communication and leadership in a supportive environment. During meetings, members give speeches in Japanese or English (sometimes both) and receive feedback in order to deliver a stronger speech the next time.

The club meets every 2nd and 4th Tuesday in DC and Northern Virginia. For more information please stop by the Open House. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to reach them at

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sojitz DC is hiring

Sojitz DC has an immediate job opening for an Administrative and Research Assistant. Check out the job description here.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017


I received this very interesting message this morning. PLEASE share this with any Japanese friends in DC! (Good luck and let me know if you're in any movies!!)


Dear Professor Knight,

My name is Tai Burkholder, I am a producer with Red Zeppelin Productions and we are shooting a short film in the DC area this June.

I am looking to cast a number of Japanese students for the film (which takes place at an acting school in Japan) and I was hoping you might be able to help me out.

The roles I am casting are mainly non-speaking, but they are all paid positions. The shoot takes Saturday, June, 17- Sunday, June, 18th. Must be believable as a Japanese Grad Student in their early-mid 20's.

Many Thanks,

Tai Burkholder
Red Zeppelin Productions
c: 917-319-6612
Tai Burkholder's IMDB Page

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Upcoming Japanese Language Career Forums

In the U.S.
Los Angeles Career Forum (Oct. 7 & 8)
*Approximately 30 hiring companies
*Scholarships available for students to help cover travel expenses 
*Participant benefits just for LA

Boston Career Forum (Nov. 17 - 19)
Website available from mid-May
*Approximately 200 hiring companies
*Scholarships available for students to help cover travel expenses

In Japan
Osaka Career Forum (June 17)
*Approximately 60 hiring companies

*Approximately 250 hiring companies

*Approximately 60 hiring companies

Full Career Forum schedule available here:

Saturday, April 15, 2017

News from Nisshin-Global

The following was received from Nisshin-Global, which is not affiliated with American University in any way, and are presented only for your information. The ideas presented are in no way endorsed by or representative of American University.

Ken Knight, Ph.D.

1.    Future Population Estimates Show A Japan With Much Smaller Population

The Ministry of Welfare and Labor announced on the 10th of April its future population estimates through the year 2065. The following comparison shows two completely different sizes of Japan:

                            2015                   2065
Population        127,090,000      88,080,000
Age 65+               33,870,000      33,810,000
                             (26.6%)             (38.4%)
Age 15-64            77,280,000      45,290,000
                            (61.8%)              (51.4%)
Age 0-14             15,950,000         8,980,000
                            (12.5%)               (10.2%)
Total fertility rate    1.45                    1.44
Lifetime expectancy
- Male                 80.75 years old 84.95 years old
- Female           86.98                  91.35

Although the estimates look dire in terms of the declining population and aging society, the recent trend is slightly upward thanks to the improvement of the birth rate. The rate, however, is way below in comparison with the administration’s target of 1.8.

2. The 3rd Longest Yet Unfelt Economic Expansion

The Cabinet Office publicly released the DI (Diffusion Index) of February as 115.5. It marked the 51 months continuous economic expansion in row since the beginning of the “Abenomics” in December 2012 when PM Abe formed his second cabinet. This is the 3rd longest economic expansion in Japan, equal to the “Bubble Economy Period” (December 1986 through February 1991). The labor market is a full-employment state and the latest effective opening-to-applicant ratio is 1.43 meaning 1.43 job openings vis-à-vis one job applicant. Salary in real term is up in 2016 first time since 2011. However, we do not feel the heat of such economic expansion much due probably to the slow consumption stalled by the consumption tax increase implemented in April 2014. Therefore, the economic expansion is fragile and it may be easily affected by global economic environmental changes such as the U.S. and Chinese economic trends.

3. Current Balance Surplus Largest Ever

According to the statistics data of Japan’s Balance of International Payment for February 2017 that the Ministry of Finance announced on the 10th of April, the current balance surplus was 2.8 trillion yen, which is the largest ever for the month of February since 1985 when the announcement of such statistics began. Japan’s current balance surplus continues for 32 months in row. Trade surplus increased 2.7 times more to 1.8 trillion yen, while the service balance was a deficit of 63.9 billion yen. An increase of auto parts exports to the U.S. as well as the shift of Chinese New Year to the end of January making large imports from China were advanced to January made this large trade surplus for February.

4. Hydrogen Society Envisioned

According to Yomiuri, the Abe Administration launched a council consisting of the Cabinet members related to the policy to diffuse hydrogen use in Japan. The council is tasked to make a basic plan within this year to clear major bottlenecks to the diffusion of use of hydrogen in the society including the following:
  • Lack of hydrogen stations to fuel hydrogen to FCV (Only 90 stations now. 320 stations to be placed by 2025.)
  • Tight regulation for maintenance and administration of hydrogen tank (Regulation to be deregulated)
  • Limited scale of demand and supply (Hydrogen power plants and imports of hydrogen to be explored)

5. TEPCO Lost Most By Liberalization Of Utility Market

One year has passed since the power utility market liberalization and METI’s affiliated utility market monitoring organization announced the data how the utility users behaved. According to the data, more than 3 million users switched the power retailers, which account for a 5.5% of the entire market. Among the 9 existing electric power companies, TEPCO lost most in terms of the number of users (1,813,800) and of the share (7.9%). KEPCO lost 721,500 (7.2%) and Hokkaido Electric Power Co lost 6%, while Chugoku and Hokuriku’s share loss were 1.2% and 1.7% respectively. The data tells that there are distinctive difference of consumers’ behavior between metropolitan area and regional area.

Please enjoy your weekend!

Nobuo Yoneyama
Nisshin Global Corporation
2-1-15 Hiroo, Shibuyaku, Tokyo 150-0012, Japan
Tel: 81-3-6450-6632, Fax: 81-3-6427-7729

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Conversations: Next Generation Ideas on the Future of U.S.-Japan Relations

Conversations: Next Generation Ideas on the Future of U.S.-Japan Relations
March 31, 2017  |  2:00-3:30 P.M.

Japan Information and Culture Center (JICC)
How will the Japan-US alliance adapt to challenges around the Pacific? As Japan pushes ahead with ambitious tourism goals ahead of Tokyo 2020, what will the economic benefits be? Can cultural and educational exchange programs fulfill their promise and deepen long term relationships between citizens in Japan and the US?

Join four leading scholars for a panel discussion on March 31 at the Japan Information & Culture Center (JICC) to learn more about these critical topics, and contribute your questions during the accompanying Q&A!

The panelists have recently returned from leading a group of young researchers as part of a Kakehashi Project trip to Japan, where they engaged in in-depth conversations with their counterparts at institutions such as the Japanese Institute of International Affairs and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
  • Romina Boccia, The Heritage Foundation
  • Alexander E. Evans, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS)
  • Hannah Suh, Center for a New American Security (CNAS)
  • Nicholas Szechenyi, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
The sponsors of this event, the Embassy of Japan and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, invite you to participate and hear the opinions of these scholars, contribute to the Q&A, and learn more about the Kakehashi Project.

For more information, please contact Ms. Helen von Gohren, 202-238-6769.


NICHOLAS SZECHENYI is deputy director of the Japan Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), where he is also a senior fellow. His research focuses on U.S.-Japan relations and U.S.–East Asia relations. Prior to joining CSIS in 2005, he was a news producer for Fuji Television in Washington, D.C., where he covered U.S. policy in Asia and domestic politics. He holds an M.A. in international economics and Japan studies from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a B.A. in Asian studies from Connecticut College.

ROMINA BOCCIA is a leading fiscal and economic expert at The Heritage Foundation, who focuses on government spending, the economy, and the national debt. She is Heritage’s Grover M. Hermann research fellow in federal budgetary affairs and deputy director of the think tank’s Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies. Boccia often advises members of Congress and their staffs on fiscal policy issues, and has testified before congressional committees. Boccia is widely published and quoted in newspapers, magazines and digital outlets such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Bloomberg, The Washington Times, The Washington Examiner, The Daily Signal, the German publication Die Welt and The National Interest, among others. She is a regular guest expert on national and international television, including Fox News, NBC, PBS and SkyNews. Boccia received her master’s degree in economics from George Mason University (GMU) in Fairfax, Va.

ALEXANDER E. EVANS is the Research and Program Coordinator at the Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies within Johns Hopkins SAIS. In this dual role, he manages the operational and financial aspects of both the research center and the affiliated Japan Studies department. His personal research focuses on the economic history of early-modern Japan, and he is currently interested in the production and distribution networks that developed around regional “famous products.” Evans holds an MSc in Economic History from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a BBA in Economics from Villanova University.

HANNAH SUH is the Program Coordinator for the Asia-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). Prior to joining CNAS, Ms. Suh interned with the Project on International Order and Strategy at the Brookings Institution and with the Korea Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). She has also held internship positions with the U.S. Department of State, The Coca-Cola Company, and Vital Voices. Ms. Suh earned her B.A. in International Studies at American University, specializing in U.S. Foreign Policy/Global Security with regional concentrations in in Asia and Europe.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Report Launch: Securing Critical Resources in a New Green and Industrial Era

Sasakawa USA is hosting a unique event that brings together several leading experts and industry insiders to discuss Sasakawa USA's new report on the challenges of identifying resource insecurities and developing strategies to ensure resilient resource supplies.This report is based on a conference sponsored by Sasakawa USA and Stanford's Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center, the first of its kind, which brought together government, industry, and academic stakeholders in the United States and Japan to discuss the strategic and economic importance of rare metals. Breakfast is served at 9:00 a.m. and presentations begin at 9:30 a.m. Our panelists on March 24 will include:

Adm. Dennis Blair, Chairman, Sasakawa USA
Dr. Phyllis Genther Yoshida, Fellow for Energy and Technology, Sasakawa USA
David Abraham, Director, Technology, Rare, and Electronic Materials Center
Nick Kotaki, Managing Director, Material Trading Company, Ltd.

Register Here

Friday, March 24, 2017 from 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM EDT

Add to Calendar

The Army and Navy Club
901 Seventeenth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006