People Advisory Council
Reischauer Institute Professor of Japanese Religions and Society Harvard University
Helen Hardacre is the founder of the Constitutional Revision Research Project. A past Director of the Reischauer Institute (1995-98), she promotes study of constitutional revision as a focus for Japanese studies across the disciplines. In February 2004 she delivered a paper at the Reischauer Institute's Japan Forum lecture series on the likely impact of constitutional revision on religious organizations, which was published as "Constitutional Revision and Japanese Religions" Japanese Studies 25/3 (December 2005): 235-247. She has delivered lectures on related topics at the International Association of the History of Religions (Tokyo, 2005), the Australian Association of Asian Studies (Adelaide, 2005), and at Tübingen University (2005). She coordinates the work of the Project's Advisory Council, Legal Advisors, Librarians, and Student Researchers. She takes special interest in the relation of constitutional revision to the Yasukuni Shrine issue and revision of the Basic Law on Education.
Former Chief Correspondent, Washington, D.C. Bureau,
Nihon Keizai Shimbun
After earning a degree in Economics and Sociology from Jiyu Gakuen College, Hiroyuki Akita studied at Boston University where he received an M.A. in International Relations. At the Nihon Keizai Shimbun (Nikkei), he has been a correspondent in the Beijing bureau where he covered numerous events, such as the death of Deng Xiaoping and the handover of Hong Kong to China in 1997. He has also served in Nikkei’s Political News Department (1998-2002), and most recently, as Chief Correspondent in the Washington D.C. Bureau. While at Harvard, Mr. Akita will examine the U.S.-Japan-China Triangle since 1972.
Professor of History
University of Connecticut
Alexis Dudden's publications include Troubled Apologies Among Japan, Korea, and the United States (Columbia University Press, 2008) and Japan's Colonization of Korea: Discourse and Power (University of Hawaii, 2005).
Associate Professor of History
University of Rhode Island
Timothy George's research interests in Japanese history include postwar history, environmental history, local history, and citizen-corporation-state relations from Meiji to the present. He spoke to the Project on "Meiji Popular Constitutionalism: From the Popular Rights Movement to Tanaka Shōzō" in November 2005, and on "Civic Engagement" as part of the panel on the current state of the debate on constitutional revision in November 2006. He is the author of "Tanaka Shōzō's Vision of an Alternative Constitutional Modernity for Japan," in Public Spheres, Private Lives in Modern Japan, 1600-1950: Essays in Honor of Albert M. Craig (Bernstein, Gordon, and Nakai, eds., 2005). He is particularly interested in the historical context of the patterns of civic activism in the current debate.
Professor of Law
Keio University, Japan
Professor Komamura earned his B.A. in Law, L.L.M., and S.J.D. from Keio University. He taught as an Associate Professor of Law at Hakuoh University before moving to Keio University. Professor Komamura’s fields of study include constitutional law, law of journalism, surveillance and civil society, and Japan’s contemporary debate over constitutional revision. His books include Ronten-tankyu kempou [Advanced Constitutional Law] (co-editor, Koubundo, 2005); Janarizumu no houri [Law of Journalism] (Sagano-Shoin, 2001); and Kenryokubunritsu no Shosou [Some Aspects of the Separation of Powers Doctrine] (Nansousha, 1999). He was a visiting scholar at Princeton University from 2008-09, and he is currently affiliated with the Reischauer Institute and Weatherhead Program on U.S.-Japan Relations at Harvard University where he is conducting research on the origins and legitimacy of Japan’s postwar constitution.
Ford International Professor of Political Science, and
Director of the Center for International Studies
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Richard J. Samuels is the Founding Director of the MIT Japan Program. In 2001 he became Chairman of the Japan-US Friendship Commission, an independent Federal grant-making agency that supports Japanese studies and policy-oriented research in the United States. In 2005 he was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
He has written several monographs related to constitutional revision in Japan: "Politics, Security Policy, and Japan's Cabinet Legislation Bureau: Who Elected these Guys, Anyway?" Japan Policy Research Institute Working Paper No. 99, March 2004; "Kenpō Kyūjō ni mo Kyūshō Ari? Kenpō Ronsō no Yukue" (Does Article Nine Have Nine Lives?: The Future of the Constitutional Debate in Japan) (with J. Patrick Boyd), Ronza (April, 2004), pp. 174-183; "Nine Lives?: The Politics of Constitutional Reform in Japan" (with J. Patrick Boyd), Policy Studies 19, East-West Center, Washington, DC, 2005; "Securing Japan: The New Discourse" Journal of Japanese Studies, Volume 33, Number 1, Winter 2007; and Securing Japan, forthcoming, Cornell University Press.
Associate Professor of Japanese History
Franziska Seraphim has been involved in the Constitutional Revision Collaborative Research Group since its founding in 2005. As a historian of postwar and contemporary Japan, she became interested in current constitutional revisionism in relation to the public debate about war memory in the 1990s, both as a way to "overcome the postwar" and in terms of the changing dynamics of political participation. She further explores the intersection of the move to revise the constitution with concurrent efforts to rewrite the Fundamental Law of Education and with ongoing discussions of Japan's immigration and nationality laws. This emphasis on contextualizing the current debate also leads her to reconsider the historical setting of the first constitutional revision debate in the 1950s as part of her next research project.