20 Years 1995 – 2015


On November 4, 1995 Japan experts from 11 European countries and from the European Commission assembled at the Japanese-German Center Berlin [JGCB] for the foundation of the European Japan Experts Association [EJEA].

It was strongly felt that such an association would help to generate and disseminate knowledge concerning Japan, the most important partner and competitor in Asia, amongst European scholars, professionals, the business world, and especially decision makers. A European organization of this kind is necessary because not only issues regarding trade but also more and more fields of politics are now issues for the European Union and not only the nation-state alone.


Conceived as an interdisciplinary association with a European profile and also open to experts from administration, business, etc., the EJEA aims to develop initiatives on a European level for promoting cooperation, exchange and transfer of knowledge between the scientific community and the European business community.

The Association intends to work in close co-operation with the institutions of the European Union, and in particular with the Commission.

According to its Standing Rules the purpose of the Association shall be achieved primarily through

  1. the promotion of co-operation between European academics with experience in Japan or persons with an academic interest in Japan, for example though activities like
    • preparation of a survey of and documentation on focal points of research and academic teaching at institutions in Europe having relations with Japan, or on Japanese institutions with research projects at the Japanese-European level,
    • continuous exchange of information on fields of work, research projects, conferences, publications etc. through the regular publication and circulation of a newsletter, accessible also to the general public
    • organization of and participation in scientific conferences
    • assistance in including knowledge gained in Japan into research and academic teaching at European universities, help in arranging guest lectures, assistance in initiating joint research projects with an emphasis on Japan, for example in the field of social science and political economy, and through recommendations to institutions in different countries promoting science and research
    • cooperation with other associations of academics with knowledge of Japan (for example the Japanese-German Center Berlin [JGCB]) and creation of joint networks
  2. the promotion of the transfer between science and practice insofar as practical experience is to be made accessible to scientists.


  1. Summer Schools
    Summer schools for European and Japanese students and graduates of all faculties (e.g. “Economy and Ecology – Strategies for Sustainable Growth”) are supposed to be interdisciplinary and to support Euro-Japanese endeavours in education.
  2. Conferences and Workshops
    The EJEA organizes conferences and participates in conferences on topics where it feels a deficiency in European expertise on Japan or in Euro-Japanese relations. The Executive Committee will decide on ideas for conferences brought forward by the Association’s members.
  3. Matching of Business Requirements and Academic Expertise
    The Association will engage in activities which stimulate the exchange between the business and the academic communities in Europe. This goal will be pursued by the means of conferences, building up data-bases, networking, making use of electronic networks, or other ways that help to maintain a permanent communication between the mentioned communities.
  4. Past Conferences (Examples)
    • Japan and the mediterranean world, Naples 1997
    • Perspectives for EU-Japan relations, Berlin 1998
    • Advances on natural hazard mitigation – Experiences from Europe and Japan, Athens 1999
    • The impact of reform on Japan, Berlin 2001
    • Japan and its neighbors, Stockholm 2004
    • EU-Japan co-operation in science and research, Milan 2007

Organs of the EJEA

  1. Executive Committee
    • Prof. Dr. Dietrich ALBERT, Graz University of Technology, Knowledge Management Institute, Austria, Chairman
    • Prof. Dr. Gesine FOLJANTY-JOST, Halle-Wittenberg University, Japanology; Deputy Chairwoman
    • Dr. Wolfgang BRENN, Japanese-German Center Berlin; Managing Member of the Executive Committee and Treasurer
    • Prof. Dr. Corrado MOLTENI, Milan University, Faculty of Political Sciences / Academic and Cultural Attachè at the Italian embassy, Tokyo,  Deputy Managing Member and Secretary
    • Prof. Dr. Gerassimos PAPADOPOULOS, National Observatory, Geodynamic Institute Athens;
    • Prof. em. Dr. Andres TÖRNVALL, former Head of Dept. of Japanese Studies, Linköping University, Institute of Technology
  2. Members Meeting
    The Members’ Meeting will be called no earlier than one year after the preceding Members’ Meeting, but no later than three years after that meeting by a managing Executive Committee member. The Association has now some 90 members.
  3. Advisory Council
    • Dr. Friederike BOSSE (Secretary General, JDZB)
    • SHIMIZU Yoichi (Deputy Secretary General JGCB)
    • Jörn KECK (Former Ambassador of the EU to Japan)
  4. Informal Groups
    The Executive Committee of the EJEA supports the formation of specialised or regional groups of members on an informal basis.