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Bridging Japan and the World through Culture

About the Japan Foundation

The Japan Foundation was established in October 1972 as a special legal entity supervised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan with the objective of promoting international cultural exchange through a comprehensive range of programs in all regions of the world. In October 2003, it was reorganized as an independent administrative institution.

With a global network consisting of the Tokyo headquarters, the Kyoto Office, two Japanese-language institutes (the Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Institute, Urawa, and the Japan Foundation Japanese-Language Institute, Kansai), and 22 overseas offices in 21 countries, the Japan Foundation operates programs in partnership with other organizations in and outside Japan, with a focus on three major fields: arts and cultural exchange, Japanese-language education overseas, and Japanese studies and intellectual exchange.

Financed largely by a government endowment of 78 billion yen, the Japan Foundation also uses the investment revenue from this endowment, government subsidies, and donations from the private sector for operating expenses. As of July 2014, the Japan Foundation has 230 employees including directors.

The Japan Foundation was established in compliance with the following legislation set in 2002.

The Independent Administrative Institution Japan Foundation Law, Article 3.

The purposes of the Japan Foundation Independent Administrative Institution are to contribute to the improvement of a good international environment, and to the maintenance and development of the harmonious foreign relationships with Japan, by the efficient and comprehensive implementation of activities for international cultural exchange, which will deepen other nations' understanding of Japan, promote better mutual understanding among nations, and contribute to the culture and other fields in the world.

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Chronological tables of the Japan Foundation activities from 1972 to 2014