Japanese Studies

The Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange programs and events offered through The Japan Foundation, Toronto exist to promote awareness and deepen understanding of Japan in Canada, and to support networks of scholars and public leaders working in the field of Japanese Studies to increase cross-cultural dialogue on critical global issues and shared concerns. Our activities include:

  • Funding programs open to scholars and researchers or academic and public institutions in the area of Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange
  • Providing local grants for Canadian-based Japanese Studies related events and conferences
  • Presenting lectures and events featuring topics related to Japanese Studies

Funding Programs

The Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange programs listed below are open to Canadians for application. The deadline for the 2018 – 2019 fiscal year for Canadian applicants was December 1, 2017. We are no longer taking applications for Fiscal Year 2018. Information about applications for Fiscal Year 2019 will be available in autumn 2018.

Information on how to apply is available here. Please address inquiries to Jess Mantell, Program Officer for Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange: jmantell@jftor.org

Lecture Events

The Japan Foundation, Toronto regularly organizes lectures and talks by noted experts in the field of Japanese Studies providing insight into varied aspects of Japanese culture, such as the arts, politics and history. Lecture events are held in the Japan Foundation, Toronto event hall as well as other locations when collaborating with partner organizations.

Past Events


Does Privacy Exist in the Age of Big Data?
Friday, March 3
On Friday, March 3, 2017, the Japan Foundation Toronto was pleased to host a lecture by Professor Kaori Ishii of Tsukuba University’s Faculty of Library, Information and Media Science. Professor Ishii’s research interests focus largely on privacy and data protection and she is now finishing up a year in Toronto as a visiting professor at Ryerson University’s read more

Two Readings and a Lecture by The Guest Cat author, Takashi Hiraide
Sunday, October 23, Wednesday & October 26 (IFoA) & Thursday, October 27 (JFT)
It was a busy week in Toronto for renowned poet, author and book designer/creator, Takashi Hiraide as he participated in two separate events during the International Festival of Authors. Mr. Hiraide’s time in Toronto was topped off by a special lecture hosted at the Japan Foundation, Toronto. read more

nemaTwo Talks by Ceramic Artist Julia Nema
Monday, July 4 & Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The first Monday and Tuesday in July marked the first time we have hosted a public event in our new Event Hall since relocating. For our inaugural events, we were pleased to present the perfect complement to our ongoing Yakishime ceramics exhibition: 2 talks by Hungarian ceramic artist and expert in unglazed pottery, Dr. Julia Nema. read more

ruralCountry Roads: Rural Tourism in Canada & Japan
Friday, May 6, 2016

On the evening of May 6, we once again enjoyed the hospitality of Ryerson’s Ted Rogers School of Management to present the final set of talks in our 3-part cross-cultural 2016 Travel Lecture Series: Country Roads: Rural Tourism in Canada and Japan delivered by Professors Christopher Fullerton and Atsuko Hashimoto of Brock University. read more

traveloguesThe Journey is my Home: Early Travel Writing in Canada & Japan
Monday, March 21 – Tuesday, March 22
On March 21, with the help of our host, University of Toronto Libraries, we presented the second lecture in our three-part 2016 Travel Lecture Series: The Journey is my Home: Early Travel Writing in Canada and Japan. We were treated to an evening of cross-cultural presentations by Professor Suzanne Bailey of Trent and Professor Kendra Strand of St. Olaf’s College. read more

special interestGive the Pilgrims What They Want: The Emergence of Special Interest Tourism in Canada & Japan
Thursday, March 10 – Monday, March 14, 2016
We kicked off our Travel Lecture Series with talks by Professor Philip Seaton of Hokkaido University, a key researcher with the “International Comparative Research on the Spreading and Reception of Culture through Contents Tourism,” and the International Journal of Contents Tourism. In Toronto, Professor David Telfer of Brock joined in to discuss special interest tourism in Canada and Japan. read more

imura 1

Planning for Smart Cities in Japan
Tuesday, March 1 – Thursday, March 3, 2016
In early March, Professor Hidefumi Imura from the Global Cooperation Institute for Sustainable Cities, Yokohama City University visited Canada on a 2-city tour at the invitation of JSAC (Japan Studies Association of Canada), and the Japan Foundation, Toronto was pleased to offer our support. Professor Imura described initiatives that various Japanese cities have enacted to become ‘smarter.’  read more

flemingChūshingura and the Edo Literary Imagination
Tuesday, February 23 – Thursday, February 25, 2016
In mid-February, the Japan Foundation, Toronto was pleased to welcome Professor William Fleming of Yale University’s Departments of East Asian Languages & Literatures, and Theater Studies, who delivered a whirlwind eastern-to-western Canada lecture tour on the topic of one of Japan’s most enduring stories: Chūshingura, the legend of the 47 ronin. read more

chibaDesigning Places for People to Meet
Monday, February 8 – Friday, February 12, 2016
Award-winning and internationally recognized Japanese architect Manabu Chiba proved he has as much stamina as talent by delivering 4 lectures in 3 cities in 5 days, explaining his personal and professional philosophy of how building design functions to facilitate human interaction with spaces as well as with each other. read more

jetaaJETAA Toronto Career Roundtable 2015
Thursday, November 26, 2015

The Japan Foundation, Toronto was pleased to play host to JETAA‘s annual Career Roundtable event, where professionals with experience living and working in Japan gave talks about their time in Japan, the lessons they learned, and how they were able to apply the knowledge and skills Japan offered them upon their re-entry to the Canadian job market. read more

ifoa jfWriters on Writing: Mitsuyo Kakuta in conversation with Rui Umezawa
Tuesday, October 27, 2015
During her first visit to Canada, acclaimed Japanese author Mitsuyo Kakuta delighted a packed house of fans with a reading from her million-selling novel The Eighth Day, followed by a discussion with local author Rui Umezawa, who recently celebrated the release of his book of stories, Strange Light Afar. read more

ifoa 15Mitsuyo Kakuta at the International Festival of Authors 2015
Saturday, October 24, 2015
Japan was ably represented at the Harbourfront Centre’s 36th annual International Festival of Authors by the highly prolific and celebrated writer Mitsuyo Kakuta. Ms. Kakuta not only gave several readings alongside other international writers, but also took time to sign copies of books for eager fans. read more

okagaki 3The Logic and Context of Conformity: Japan’s Entry into International Society
Friday, September 11 – Monday, September 14, 2015
In September, Professor Tomoko Okagaki of Dokkyo University delivered lectures in Toronto and Vancouver based on her book, The Logic of Conformity: Japan’s Entry into International Society, in which she outlined the progressive phases and stages of Japan’s relationship with dominant ‘western’ nations through the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, from admiration to emulation to rivalry. read more