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My Japan Journey podcast - episode
An Outsider with An Open Mind

Gerry Curtis

"It was like peeling an onion, the more I learned about Japan, I wanted to get down to the next layer. And you do and then what do you discover there's still further layers to penetrate. And so I've been peeling this onion for an awfully long time. Yeah, I’ve still got a lot more to learn."

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Gerald L. Curtis is Burgess Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Columbia University, Senior Research Scholar and Director of Columbia’s Japan Research Program, Chairman of the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation, and Distinguished Research Fellow at the Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research. He served as Director of Columbia University’s Weatherhead East Asian Institute for a total of twelve years.

He is the author of Election Campaigning Japanese Style, The Japanese Way of Politics, The Logic of Japanese Politics, Seiji to Samma - Nihon to Kurashite 45 nen (Politics and Saury – 45 years Living with Japan), Japan Story and numerous other books and articles dealing with Japanese politics, society, and foreign relations written in both English and Japanese and translated into Chinese, Korean, Thai and other languages. His commentaries are published frequently in newspapers and magazines in the US, Japan, and other countries. He is well known to Japanese audiences for his personal knowledge of and interactions with Japan's political leaders over five decades.

Dr. Curtis serves on the Board of Directors of the Japan Society of New York and the Japan Center for International Exchange (Tokyo) and its affiliate JCIE/USA. He is a Councilor of the US-Japan Council and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Past activities include Director of the US-Japan Parliamentary Exchange Program, Special Advisor to Newsweek for Newsweek Japan, columnist for the Chunichi and Tokyo Shimbun, member of the advisory council to the Center for Global Partnership of the Japan Foundation and the Board of Directors of the US-Japan Foundation. He serves as consultant and advisor to numerous public and private organizations in the US and Japan.

He is the recipient of the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star awarded by the Emperor of Japan, one of the highest honors bestowed by the Japanese government. He has earned numerous other awards and honors including the Masayoshi Ohira Memorial Prize, the Chunichi Shimbun Special Achievement Award, the Japan Foundation Award, the Marshall Green Award of the Japan-America Society of Washington, D.C., the Eagle on the World Award of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry in New York, and the Special Award of the America-Japan Society of Tokyo.

Professor Curtis has held appointments at the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House), London; the College de France, Paris; the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy, Singapore; and in Tokyo at Keio, Tokyo and Waseda University, the Graduate Research Institute for Policy Studies, and the Institute for International Economic Studies. Professor Curtis received his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1969 and served on its faculty for 47 years.

Selcted Works

Selected Works

Election Campaigning Japanese Style (Columbia University Press, 2009)

The Japanese Way of Politics (Columbia University Press, 1989)

The Logic of Japanese Politics: Leaders, Institutions, and the Limits of Change (Columbia University Press, 2000)

Connect with Gerry Curtis

Columbia University Faculty Profile

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