Japan's Soft Power: Prospects and Challenges in a New Era

Friday, February 28 at 8:30am to 5:00pm

USC Wallis Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, ANN Auditorium

Japan has been perennially ranked as one of the strongest soft-power nations in the world. On Friday, February 28, CPD will convene a conference to examine Japan on the global stage with a focus on culture and innovation as drivers of a nation’s soft power. This conference will bring together leading scholars, practitioners, innovators, and cultural thought leaders to explore Japanese culture and its global influence. This program is in cooperation with the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles.

SCHEDULE (subject to change)

Introduction and Welcome, Jay Wang, Director, USC Center on Public Diplomacy

Welcome remarks, Barry Sanders, CPD Advisory Board Chair

Global Attitudes and the Image of Japan, Jacob Poushter, Associate Director, Global Attitudes Research, Pew Research Center

On Beauty”, Gil Garcetti, photographer; former District Attorney for Los Angeles County

Panel #1 | A Cultural Japan

  • Yuko Kaifu, President, Japan House Los Angeles
  • David McConnell, Professor, Sociology and Anthropology East Asian Studies, College of Wooster
  • Jay Wang, Director, USC Center on Public Diplomacy (moderator)
  • Yasushi Watanabe, Professor, Environment and Information Studies, Keio University

Panel #2 | Tokyo Olympics and Soft Power

  • Susan Brownell, Professor, Anthropology, University of Missouri
  • Ben Carrington, University of Southern California (moderator)
  • Paul Droubie, Assistant Professor, History, Manhattan College
  • Dylan Hernandez, Sports Columnist, Los Angeles Times

Panel #3 | High-Tech Japan: The Future of Innovation Towards Social Good

  • Jay Jain, Senior Director, Strategic Execution, NEC Corporation America
  • Patricia Riley, Director, Annenberg Global Communication program and Associate Professor, USC Annenberg (moderator)
  • Takanori Shibata, Chief Senior Research Scientist, AIST Japan

Closing remarks

Networking reception will follow immediately after the program.

Refreshments will be served during the day.

On-campus parking is available for $14 per car. Click here for parking structure locations.

Event Type

Conference/Symposia, Event Highlights


Students, Alumni, Faculty/Staff


University Park Campus






##publicdiplomacy, #softpower, #Japan

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