The TICAD Initiative: What is new in Japanese Economic Assistance to Africa?

Department of East Asian Studies University of Leeds (In collaboration with the Africa-Asia Centre, School of Oriental and African Studies, London)

11 October 2010, Seminar Rooms 3 and 4, Leeds Humanities Research Institute, Leeds.

12 October 2010, Room 532, Malet Street Building, Birkbeck College, University of London.

For further information and registration, please contact  jicauk@jica.co.uk

In February 2009 the Department of East Asian Studies, University of Leeds, organised a highly successful workshop about Japan's recent initiatives concerning African economies.

The workshop focused on the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) to assess the dimensions and depth of Japan's evolving interest in African development. It was agreed at the event that discussion and assessment regarding the TICAD should be ongoing.

Consequently, in collaboration with the Africa-Asia Centre (School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London), the Department of East Asian Studies is putting together a follow-up seminar on Japanese economic assistance to Africa under the title: "The TICAD Initiative: What is new in Japanese Economic Assistance to Africa?". The TICAD should be seen and assessed within the context of the role of the 'Asian Drivers' and the tipping points in history (in so far as these trends can be said to be enforcing a change in global affairs in general and Africa's historical circumstances in particular).

This year's seminar, "The TICAD Initiative: What is new in Japanese Economic Assistance to Africa?", is designed to further the debate and evaluate the TICAD process more extensively, by spelling out possible Japanese 'exceptionalisms' in an analysis that should throw up certain clues and points of comparison in development approaches. The seminar brings together seven speakers:

  • Professor Motoki Takahashi, University of Kobe
  • Professor Machiko K. Nissanke, School of Oriental and African Studies
  • Dr. Caroline Rose, University of Leeds
  • Mr. Kimiaki Jin, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), UK
  • Dr. Soyeun Kim, University of Leeds
  • Dr. Fletcher Tembo, Overseas Development Institute
  • Dr. Kweku Ampiah, University of Leeds

Working on the assumption that TICAD is designed to assemble and process a new kind of telescope that might expose the finer details of the economic dysfunctions of Africa, the speakers will aim to tease out Japan's recent contributions to economic development in Africa. Among the topics to be addressed are:

  • The concept of ownership and self-help in Japanese economic assistance to Africa
  • Japan and China's interests in Africa
  • Environmental concerns in within the TICAD process
  • Capacity development
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