MIGRATION AND REFUGEE STUDIES
LIVING WITH PEOPLE WITH FOREIGN BACKGROUNDS
-The Global-Local Nexus
Research Keywords: Globalization, Migration and Refugee Studies, Multicultural Coexistence
THE INCREASED TRANSNATIONAL MOVEMENT OF PEOPLE
Until countries started closing their borders due to COVID-19, the cross-border mobility of people was part and parcel of everyday life in a globalized world. Some crossed borders for study or work, while others had no choice but to flee across boundaries to escape conflict and persecution. Globalization has increased the number of migrants and refugees, creating numerous impacts worldwide that lead to the burgeoning of research in the field of humanities and social sciences on migration and transnational mobility of people.
As witnessed in the 2015 Syrian refugee crisis in Europe, Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, the massive flow of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar to neighboring countries, the movement of people has significantly influenced and altered the society.
As of late 2019, approximately three million registered foreign residents are living in Japan, led by several policy initiatives including the amended Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act and the “300,000 International Students Plan”, which aimed to increase the number of international students.
Migrants are engaged in different types ofwork that sustain our daily lives and contributeto the economy. However, their contribution is not always visible. Migrants include people of various backgrounds and Japanese society is in fact quite diverse; however, sharp boundaries are often drawn between “Japan/Japanese” and “foreign countries/ foreigners”.There is also a tendency to perceive people in terms of prejudice and stereotypes based on the intersections of race, class, and gendered hierarchies that exists in Japan.
Led by Reiko Ogawa, this research group aim to integrate the transnational mobility of people with practical initiatives in the local area. It comprehensively studies the background for this global mobility, networks that enable it, policies and institutions, education and employment of migrants in Japan to identifying the challenges affecting multicultural coexistence in Chiba.
First, we study the migration trajectories through multidisciplinary approach. Backgrounds, global norms and networks provide the context in which mobility has been shaped, facilitated or hindered. Second, we focus on education and employment of migrants and children with foreign roots in Chiba. Taking a multidisciplinary approach encompassing international relations, history, sociology, economics, management, educational studies, law and area studies, we present the research findings, facilitate networking and policy advocacy.
INTERGRATING EDUCATION AND EMPLOYMENT
The keyword of this research is multicultural coexistence. “The term ‘multicultural coexistence’ is often used to mean the integration of migrants into society. In contemporary Japan, the critical issue is to ensure the rights of migrants and integrate education and employment,” says Ogawa. Japan has ratified many international treaties, but the failure of international norms to penetrate domestic affairs has caused many challenges. One of these challenges is education for children with foreign roots. Thus far, education policies in Japan have not given a clear place to these children. Therefore, low education levels, drop out and unemployment have become pressing issues. Many studies have shown that a lack of educational opportunities causes a lifelong impact and results in severe losses for society.
Instead of marginalizing and excluding children with international backgrounds, we must provide an environment in which they can apply their latent skills. “As the Japanese population shrinks at an accelerating rate, it has become urgent to create a positive cycle that integrates the education and employment of migrants. This is a significant undertaking, both academically and policy wise,” says Ogawa.
A society that recognizes diversity and where different cultures coexist would be a better one not only for migrants, but also for the Japanese, who are themselves diverse in terms of class, gender, ethnicity, social position, and physical and mental challenges.
|Name||Title, Affiliation||Research Themes|
|OGAWA Reiko||Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Sociology,Immigration research|
|Name||Title, Affiliation||Research Themes|
|SASAKI Ayako||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Global and Transdisciplinary Studies||Sociology,International social welfare,Welfare policy|
|FUKUDA Tomoko||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Global and Transdisciplinary Studies||International sociology,Immigration research|
|NAKAMURA Chihiro||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Western economic history|
|SHIMIZU Kaoru||Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Business management|
|YOKOO Harumichi||Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Management strategy|
|TSUCHIDA Yuichi||Professor,Cener for Research,Training and Guidance in Educational Practice||Moral education,Educational counseling,International understanding cooperation|
|KOBAYASHI Satoko||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Global and Transdisciplinary Studies||Education,linguistic anthropology,Qualitative research methodology|
|SAKIYAMA Naoki||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Global and Transdisciplinary Studies||History|
|TAKAMITSU Yoshie||Associate Professor,Graduate School of Global and Transdisciplinary Studies||International political history,American diplomatic history,Political science|
|SAITO Megumi||Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Constitution|
|SAKAI Keiko||Professor,Graduate School of Humanities and Studies on Public Affairs||Middle East Area Studies|