Expanding Support for Democratic Governance


In 2018, JCIE launched a multi-pronged initiative to explore and expand Japan’s support for democratic governance that is based on the values of liberty, accountability, the rule of law, and individual dignity and empowerment. The initiative, also known as “Democracy for the Future,” is designed to engage Japanese leaders in dialogue with domestic and overseas experts on ways of strengthening the building blocks of democratic governance in Asia and elsewhere. The program convenes a study group of Japanese experts to identify strategies on how support for these values can be incorporated in Japan’s foreign policy and development assistance. These ideas will be shared widely to raise awareness about the importance of democratic governance among policymakers and opinion leaders. The program also engages Japanese Diet members and other senior leaders in international dialogues on issues related to democracy, and it serves as a platform to involve Japanese experts, civil society leaders, and others in international forums on the topic.

In 2021–2022, JCIE began a new nine-month project, “Japan’s Democracy: Lessons and Reflections.” The project created a platform for Japanese scholars, political and opinion leaders, and the broader Japanese public to reflect on Japan’s own experience in building a democratic society in the post-WWII era.


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Public Symposium | Defending Universal Values in the Indo-Pacific—The Roles of Japan and the G7 Summit

March 28, 2023


JCIE hosted a public symposium in the lead up to Japan hosting the G7 Summit in Hiroshima to deepen discussions on the role Japan should fulfill in defending universal values and a rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific…

Interviews from the Sunnylands Initiative Retreat

August 1–2, 2022


Odawara, Japan
At the second meeting of the Sunnylands Initiative on Enhancing Democratic Partnership in the Indo-Pacific region in Japan, select participants shared their thoughts on key issues concerning democracy in the region in a series of short video clips. …
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Second Sunnylands Initiative Retreat Hosted in Japan

August 1–2, 2022


Odawara, Japan
Responding to the urgent need to address the threats to democracy in the Indo-Pacific region and around the world, JCIE convened the second meeting of the Sunnylands Initiative on Enhancing Democratic Partnership in the Indo-Pacific (Sunnylands Initiative) on August 1-3,…
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Online International Conference | The Role of Civil Society and the Next Generation for the Future of Democracy

May 30–May 31 (US) | May 31–June 1 (Asia)


JCIE’s Democracy for the Future Program will be hosting an online international conference to explore the role of civil society and the next generation for the future of democracy. Register to attend via zoom…
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Webinar | Enhancing Democratic Partnership in Asia

December 7, 2021


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CSO Roundtable on Japan's Support in Addressing the Global Crisis for Democracy and Human Rights

August 10, 2021


JCIE hosted a roundtable which brought together participants from a variety of Japanese and international CSOs to discuss what kind of support is needed from japan to support democracy and human rights….
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Democracy for the Future | Roundtable on Shared Values in Asian Led Efforts to Defend and Support Democracy

June 29, 2021


JCIE brought together a group of leaders in the field to discuss the question of shared values in Asian led efforts to support and defend democracy…
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Webinar | Building Partnerships and Cooperation to Support Democratic Governance in the Indo-Pacific

November 23, 2020


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Democracy for the Future | Meeting of Civil Society Leaders on COVID-19 and Challenges to Democratic Values

June 11, 2020


JCIE brought together a group of civil society leaders for an online discussion on the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for civil society and the challenges it might pose to democratic values in Asia….
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Democracy for the Future | Launch of New Japanese-Language Website

April 1, 2020


As part of JCIE’s program to expand support for democratic governance, a new website has been launched to serve as a Japanese-language hub to share information and resources on this subject….

Research Team


YUKIO TAKASU, Former UN Undersecretary-General for Management; former Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations


MAIKO ICHIHARA, Professor, Graduate School of Law, School of International and Public Policy, Hitotsubashi University

RYO SAHASHI, Associate Professor of International Politics, Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia, University of Tokyo; JCIE Research Fellow


TAKAKO HIKOTANI, Professor, International Centre, Gakushuin University

HIROAKI SHIGA, Professor, Faculty of International Social Sciences, Division of International Social Sciences, Yokohama National University

KAORI SHOJI, Professor, Department of Political Studies, Gakushuin University

HARUKATA TAKENAKA, Professor, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies

KIMITOSHI YABUKI, Attorney at Law, Yabuki Law Offices



HIDEKO KATSUMATA, Executive Director & COO

RYO TAINAKA, Program Officer and Administrative Officer

SHIGEKO KONDO, Program Associate


KAZUYO KATO, Executive Director

STEPHEN McHUGH, Associate Program Office