What We Have Done

Looking Back on the Achievements of the Last Forty Years (Digest Version)

Since its establishment in 1972, the Japan Foundation has introduced leading and established art and culture of the times, continuously developed programs to enrich Japanese-language education all over the world, and created numerous opportunities to exchange wisdom between Japan and other countries.
Note: The years described below indicate Japanese fiscal years (April to March).

  1. 1.Overview of the Japan Foundation
  2. 2.What We Do to Engage with People Throughout the World
  3. 3. How We Support People in Cultural Exchange
  4. 4.The Japan Foundation's Overseas Offices
  5. 5.What We Have Done / Looking Back on the Achievements of the Last Forty Years
  6. 6.How We Keep Step with You

1970's

1973
Started Japan Foundation Fellowship Program
1973
Established the Japan Foundation Awards
1973
Commenced Training Program for Japanese Language Teachers Abroad
1974
Started quarterly publication of Kokusai Koryu (International Exchange)
1974
Published the first issue of An Introductory Bibliography for Japanese Studies
1975
Released the first report of Survey on Japanese-language Education Abroad and found approximately 78,000 Japanese-language learners overseas
1975
Held the first Noh theater performance in the Middle East
1977
Invited French cultural anthropologist and ethnologist Claude Lévi-Strauss
1978
Dispatched a sport team to six Asian countries for the first time, having gathered a total of 200,000
1979
Sent a Kabuki troupe to China – the first cultural exchange project under governmental auspices

Andre Malraux, former Minister of Culture in France invited under the Japan Foundation Fellowship Extraordinary program (1974)
Andre Malraux, former Minister of Culture in France invited under the Japan Foundation Fellowship Extraordinary program (1974)

The first Asian Traditional Performing Arts (ATPA) exchange program (1976)
The first Asian Traditional Performing Arts (ATPA) exchange program (1976)

1980's

1983
Started broadcasting of TV skits for Japanese-language learners Yan and the Japanese People overseas
1984
Held the first Japanese-Language Proficiency Test overseas. Taken by 4,473 in 19 cities in 14 countries
1986
Published English version of The Basic Japanese-English Dictionary, followed by multiple language versions
1986
Exhibited "Japon des Avant Gardes 1910-1970" in France. Visited by 150,000

Photo of "The Great Japan Exhibition: Art of the Edo Period" as the main event of "Japan in London" (1981)
"The Great Japan Exhibition: Art of the Edo Period" as the main event of "Japan in London" (1981)

Photo of Training Programs for overseas teachers of the Japanese Language (1981)
Training Programs for overseas teachers of the Japanese Language (1981)

1990's

1991
Started Abe Fellowship Program
1993
Published the first issue of Japanese Book News
1994
Held performances of a triple production of Noh, Bunraku, and Kabuki versions of “Shunkan” in Europe
1995
Exhibited "Asian Modernism: Diverse Development" in Indonesia, the Philippines, and Thailand
1996
Organized Japan Pavilion at the 6th Venice Architecture Biennale, having won the International Prize Golden Lion for the best national participation
1996
Launched Asia Leadership Fellowship Program
1998
Published English translation of Shiba Ryotaro's The Last Shougun: The Lite of Tokugawa Yoshinobu

Photo of The Southeast Asia Festival '92 in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN (1992)
The Southeast Asia Festival '92 in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN (1992)

Photo of A theatrical production "Lear" with staff and cast from six Asian countries (1997)
A theatrical production "Lear" with staff and cast from six Asian countries (1997)

2000's

2001
Co-hosted the first Yokohama Triennale 2001
2002
Launched "Future Leaders Forum: Japan-China-Korea"
2005
Invited Afghanistan potters for peace-building through culture
2006
Held a symposium and workshops "A Wild Haruki Chase: How the World Is Reading and Translating Murakami"
2006
Launched Long-term Invitation Program for Chinese High School Students (Chinese text only)
2006
Initiated Japan-US Dialogue for Cooperation in Reconstruction after Hurricane Katrina
2006
Invited young designers from five countries in Asia and held a joint fashion show with Japanese students
2007
Organized performing arts workshops for children in Aceh , Indonesia for peace-building through culture
2009
Held the first-ever Bunraku performance in Russia
2009
Found 3.6 million Japanese-language learners overseas
2010
Released "JF Standard for Japanese-Language Education 2010"

“Erin’s Challenge! I Can Speak Japanese.”
"Erin’s Challenge! I Can Speak Japanese.", first on TV in- and outside Japan (2006)

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