Japan in the Year is an all-day symposium that gathers the top experts on Japan from think tanks, academia, the government, the press and the business and non-profit sectors to look at Japan’s domestic and international prospects for the coming year.

Join us on Thursday, January 25th, 2024 for a discussion on what lies ahead for Japan in the world in the year of mounting challenges. Read more about Japan in the Year here.

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At its 10th annual Japan in the Year conference, the Japan-America Society of Washington DC will partner with the Wilson Center to discuss what’s in store for the year ahead in Japan’s foreign policy and domestic affairs.

As the war in Ukraine continues and tensions in the Middle East persist, 2024 will be a year that will be defined by uncertainties. Elections are scheduled across the world, including Asia. As a result, Japan’s global leadership will be critical to ensure stability in an uncertain world. At the same time, a stronger US-Japan relationship will be at the heart of ensuring peace across the Indo-Pacific and to promote a rules-based order in the region.

Japan has emerged as a global leader on a wide range of key issues that transcend its own border, from economic architecture to non-proliferation and climate change. It has furthered existing relations with the United States, enhanced ties with Australia, and taken significant steps to working together with South Korea and the United States for trilateral cooperation. Japan has emerged as a diplomatic powerhouse, acting as a trusted partner to bridge the Middle East as well as Southeast Asia to complement Washington.

Still, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida faces significant challenges at home, not least economic management, cabinet scandals, and possibility of leadership change raise questions about whether Japan itself can enjoy the consistent leadership that may be required for Japan to realize its potential for global leadership at a time when it is greatly needed.


Shigeo Yamada, Ambassador of Japan to the United States of America (pre-recorded)
Rahm Emanuel, Ambassador of the United States of America to Japan (pre-recorded)
Ambassador Mark A. Green, President and CEO, Wilson Center
Ryan Shaffer, President, Japan-America Society of Washington DC
Shihoko Goto, Director, Asia Program, Director for Geoeconomics and Indo-Pacific Enterprise
Kotaro Shiojiri, Japan Foundation Visiting Fellow, Wilson Center
Saori Katada, Professor of International Relations and the Director of the Center for International Studies at University of Southern California (Participating virtually)
David Boling, Director, Japan and Asian Trade, Eurasia Group
Mieko Nakabayashi, Professor, Center for International Education, Waseda University (Participating virtually)
Frank Jannuzi, President and CEO, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation
Grace Park, Director, Japan Policy, Indo-Pacific Security Affairs / East Asia, Office of the Secretary of Defense