International Conference on the Empowerment of Women

This seminar emphasizes the opportunity for a dialogue between Europe and Japan in the area of women issues.

This seminar emphasizes the opportunity for a dialogue between Europe and Japan in the area of women issues. More than 10 speakers from across Japan and four European countries, with backgrounds ranging from academia, advocacy and policy-making to media, consultancy and CEO management, will present and discuss propositions and experiences fostering women empowerment made at three levels of society: government, private sector and individuals. The aim of the seminar is to bring together a range of insight views and opinions, discuss the outcomes and possibilities of recent initiatives across these countries and find ways in which they are brought into closer contact. Women’s empowerment has in this context a dual meaning: it refers to women’s access to opportunities and decision making platforms but also emphasizes a reevaluation of women’s and men’s contribution to society in general.

Of the many changes taking place in our societies in recent years, the variation in women’s status is among the most striking. Women’s educational level is rising and their talents are viewed as valuable assets for employers and thus, for national development. High stakes have been placed on education and innovation as the drivers of growth . In the private sector, women’s participation in paid employment continues to rise. Data now shows that women’s contribution to company strategy and management enhances productivity and profits. In recent years, Europe and Japan have engaged in a growing number of initiatives throughout many areas to empower women. These initiatives are understood to not only enhance women’s welfare, but furthermore they are part of a broader commitment to social sustainability and quality of life. At a government level, legal reforms and policies are trying to tackle longstanding barriers for gender equality, including the recently passed gender equality laws in Norway and Spain, which continue to ignite the debate over the norm in boardrooms across the globe. In the Netherlands the legal framework offers good provisions for full- and part-time workers regarding pension, social security, and equal rights. In Japan, rising efforts are more visible in the professional arena. Large employers have started to set up human-resource-developing programmes to put more women on the management-track. Additionally, companies are establishing on-site childcare infrastructures and the number of women accessing executive roles and continuing to work after child birth gradually increases. In addition, the new government of Japan has recently approved new laws on child support. In both Europe and Japan, initiatives led by individuals outside of the political and professional realms are also trying to make a difference, including everyday actions and dispositions among friends, family members and towards others which are beginning to have an effect at large. Nonetheless, the challenges ahead are still immense.

Date: Saturday, 12 June 2010, 9:30 - 17:00
Place: Instituto Cervantes, 2-9 Rokubancho, Chiyoda-ku. Ichigaya – Yotsuya
Language: Simultaneous Japanese, English and Spanish translation

Organized by:
A joint collaboration between the Instituto Cervantes and the Japan Foundation, in partnership with the Spanish Embassy, the Royal Norwegian Embassy, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung and 85 Boards.

Japan Office

7-5-56 Akasaka
Tokyo, 107-0052

+03 6277-7551
+03 3588-6035


Photo: Conference, FES Japan


German-Japanese Economy Dialogue

During the visit of Mr. Wolfgang Tiefensee, State Minister of Economy, Science and the Digital Society in the government of Thuringia, the Japanese-German dialogue on economic policy was deepened. Minister Tiefensee met with Diet Members and researchers in Tokyo.


Read more

EPRIE 2017- Exchange Program For Regional Integration In East Asia And Europe

EPRIE 2017 will take a closer look at global migration patterns as well as differences and similarities between migration policies in Europe and East Asia.

Read more

Symposium "Ageing Societies and Legal Approaches"

Germany and Japan are both confronting substantial social and political challenges of an increasingly aging society. Their goal is to find sustainable solutions, particularly with regards to social and labor rights. Among important objectives in this field are generational equity, financial viability of the social security system, and prevention of age discrimination. By comparing both countries’ legal frameworks, resolutions and strategies on the issue, potential problems can be uncovered and possibly avoided.

Read more
Graphic: Publications, J. Traud

Latest Publications

Study "Social Innovation Polcy for Industry 4.0"

The concept of “Industry 4.0” outlines the vision of a smart factory, which is characterised by the complete networking of all production parts and processes: real time control via ITC and the increased use of robots, which control themselves, are developments that should contribute to greater productivity through resource efficiency. The shift is already under way and the concept of Industry 4.0 is shaping the digital discourse in Germany.

Read more

Interview "House of Representatives Elections 2017"

Interview with Sven Saaler regarding the 2017 House of Represenatives election and the trouble of the largest opposition party, the Democratic Party of Japan.

Read more

Commentary "House of Representatives Elections 2017"

In the 2017 House of Representatives election, the LDP could again win a clear victory. The opposition was more divided than ever, after the break-up of the Democratic Party, and could not pose a serious challenge to the Abe government.

Read more