October 7, 2020
Statement on the Refusal to Appoint Nominees as New Council Members to the Science Council of Japan
Board of Directors
Japanese Association for Religious Studies
With neither precedent nor explanation, our Prime Minister has excluded six humanities and social science nominees from the Science Council of Japan. The candidate nominated to join the Committee on Philosophy in the Humanities and Social Sciences Section served for many years as a director of our association; his academic works and erudition amply attest to his qualification for this post representing philosophical and religious studies in Japan.
We cannot accept this peremptory and unexplained rejection of six preeminent scholars nominated based on academic evaluation in their respective fields. This exclusion violates the independence of the Science Council of Japan, undermines its founding ideals, and threatens academic freedom and autonomy in Japan.
We urge that the six scholars be immediately appointed as council members, pursuant to the Science Council of Japan’s “Request for Appointment of New Members for the 25th Term.”
April 11, 2011
To all those adversely affected by the Great East Japan(Tohoku-Kanto) Earthquake, I extend my deepest concern. Moreover, amidst this most unprecedented of disasters, I offer my sincere condolences to those who have lost friends and loved ones.
I understand that a number of our association’s members have been directly affected by the disaster. I assume that they have taken the first steps on the road toward recovery; however, recognizing how difficult and trying the situation must be, I would like to express my heart-felt sympathy.
Further, I wish to communicate my sense of respect and gratitude to our association’s members who are contributing to the relief effort. At the April 9th Board of Director’s meeting we confirmed, and it is the stated position of the Japanese Association for Religious Studies, we will exert every effort to maintain our association’s activities as usual. In doing so, we aim to support the reconstruction of the disaster area and the aid to the disaster victims, while contemplating upon the meaning this earthquake disaster holds for us all.
Confronted with a magnitude of difficulty stemming from this disaster, I, along with all the association’s officers, call upon all members to offer their suggestions and opinions in considering, from the position of the field of religious studies, the future actions and activities of the association and how we can best foster a hope in Japan’s future.
President of the Japanese Association of Religious Studies