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Japan in Crisis, 2011

On March 11, 2011, a massive earthquake measuring 9.0 on the Richter scale struck just off the coast of Japan. The earthquake and the resulting tsunami and aftershocks have caused thousands of deaths and have also severely damaged the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. As fears of meltdown, radiation, and contamination continue, the Institute for Advanced Study is providing this page as a forum for an interdisciplinary group of scholars to share their insights on the situation as it develops.

Faultlines, Japanese Stories in A Shifting Landscape

Christine L. Marran is a professor in the Department of Asian Languages and Literatures at the University of Minnesota as well as a former IAS fellow and a co-convener of the Environment, Culture, and Sustainability Group of Quadrant. This blog brings together Japanese reports not easily found elsewhere in the US and discusses events in a broader framework of Japanese history and culture.

Regular IAS correspondent Peter Shea, who holds a PhD in philosophy from the University of Minnesota and is the director and producer of the Bat of Minerva, is interviewing a series of scholars with in-depth knowledge of Japanese history, culture, and society as well as those with specialized expertise in geology, nuclear power, and disaster response.

April 5, 2011 – Karen Campbell is the Education Director at the National Center for Earth-surface Dynamics, a National Science Foundation sponsored Science and Technology Center.

April 4, 2011 – Blaine Brownell is an architect, author, educator, and founder of the design/research practice Transstudio, which focuses on disruptive material applications and emergent environmental building strategies. He is also the author of Matter in the Floating World: Conversations with Leading Japanese Architects and Designers (Princeton Architectural Press, 2011).

March 30, 2011 – Michael Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), director of the NIH-supported Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance within CIDRAP, a professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health and in the Medical School at the University of Minnesota. He has been a national leader detailing the growing concern regarding the use of biological agents as catastrophic weapons targeting civilian populations.

March 29, 2011 – Walter Enloe is Professsor of Human Studies in the School of Education at Hamline University. From 1980 to 1988 he was the principal and teacher of Hiroshima International School.

March 29, 2011 – Dean Abrahamson is a professor emeritus of public affairs and planning at the University of Minnesota’s Hubert Humphey Center, where he researches the intersection of energy and environmental policies, particularly in the choice between nuclear and renewable energy supplies.

March 29, 2011 – Anne Hake worked in Port-au-Prince for three months during the fall of 2010 with the American Refugee Committee researching opportunities for permanent housing solutions in Haiti.

March 26, 2011 – Hanna Kite is a graduate student in the Program In Health Disparities Research at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health. Previously she was a reporter in Japan and Hong Kong covering health, lifestyle, and news stories for a number of newspapers and magazines.

March 23, 2011 – Jeffrey Broadbent is a professor of Sociology at the University of Minnesota where his current research includes “Comparing Climate Change Policy Networks,” a comparative study of national political will to deal with global climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

March 23, 2011 – Jim Lutz is a professor of Architecture at the University of Minnesota where he is currently engaged in a project with graduate students on designing schools in Haiti in the wake of the earthquake of 2010.

March 13, 2011 – Brett Walker is a professor of History and Philosophy at Montana State University and one of the leading environmental historians of Japan.

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