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Are law scholars disappearing?

  • Read in Japanese
  • 2017/12/28

Institute of International Education and Exchange

Designated Prof. Atsuko Tsuji

This past fall, an event was held at the Hanoi Law University in Vietnam to mark the 10-year anniversary of the foundation of the Nagoya University Research and Education Center for Japanese Law (CJL), an institution that provides Vietnamese students an opportunity to study Japanese Law through the medium of the Japanese Language. The program is popular but tough to complete, since it must be taken in addition to the full degree curriculum delivered by the School of Law of Hanoi Law University. Every year, over 200 students apply for 25 places; only 10 or so successfully graduate. If it is difficult to get in, it is even harder to get through to the other end. So far the Center has produced 71 graduates, of whom 22 have gone on to postgraduate studies at Meidai and other Japanese universities. Others are working for a wide range of employers including Japanese companies, universities and government agencies in roles that link Japan and Vietnam.

Minister of Justice Le Thanh Long, who gave a congratulatory speech at the event, also learned Japanese Law - on an English language program as it was before CJL was established - and went on to complete his doctorate at Meidai. In his speech, he attributed his success to his studies at Nagoya University and praised CJL for nurturing talents who will build a bridge of friendship between Vietnam and Japan. The President of Meidai, Seiichi Matsuo, attended the ceremony alongside Dr. Le Tien Chau, the Rector of the Hanoi Law University, both of whom vowed to continue expanding the Center's success.

People attending CJL's 10-year anniversary event held at the Hanoi Law University, November 15, 2017

The event was a timely reminder of the solid success of the Meidai School of Law's effort to provide legislative assistance to Asian countries and train human resources (http://www.meidaiwatch.iech.provost.nagoya-u.ac.jp/en/2017/02/post-1.html) and to teach Japanese law in Japanese (http://www.meidaiwatch.iech.provost.nagoya-u.ac.jp/en/2017/05/51.html). It is ironic, then, that the Nagoya University School of Law itself is apparently facing a crisis in its own human resource development. "The system for training academics has all but collapsed," according to Professor Emeritus Akio Morishima, who also attended the event. A Civil Code specialist and a former Dean of the School of Law, he pioneered Meidai's legislative assistance initiative in Asia. Can the Meidai School of Law continue to meet the rising Vietnamese partner's expectations? Upon my return to Japan, I visited the School of Law to find out......>>read more on the Meidai Watch

Atsuko Tsuji: Earned B.A. in Arts, College of Arts and Sciences, the University of Tokyo in 1976. Joined The Asahi Shimbun Company in 1979 as a journalist and wrote many articles in science and technology area for newspaper and magazines published by the company including editorial pieces. Knight Science Journalism Fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1989 and Reuters Fellow at University of Oxford in 2014. Designated Professor of Nagoya University's Institute of International Education and Exchange since October 2016.


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