search/admin/spider_custom.php search/search.php fellowship_survey/survey.php Fellow Follow-up Survey Details - James Wagner

DF (1975)

Fellow Information:
First Name
Middle Name
Last Name
Wagner (changed from WAGNER)
Newsweek Japan
Consulting Editor
Contact Address:
Address Type
Address 1
2-5-14-1201 Yushima
Address 2 (optional)
Zip Code
+81 3 5840 6772
*Survey URL
1. Are you enaged in Japanese Studies?

Answer: B. Yes, I am engaged in Japanese Studies at another kind of organization.

Field of Study: Journalism

2. Please describe what you are currently doing. (If you have your own website or any relevant site, provide its URL.)

Answer: I am currently serving as consulting editor (henshuu komon) at Newsweek Japan (Newsweek Nihonban), the Japanese-language edition of Newsweek magazine published under contract with Harman Newsweek LLC. by Hankyu Communications Co., Ltd. I am also working pro bono as executive director of Alam Aksara, a volunteer organization set up in Japan to provide scholarships to economically disadvantaged students in Indonesia (

3. Where did you acquire your most advanced Japanese language training for your research?

Answer: B. I learned it at a special language training school. (The Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies)

4. Have you ever participated in the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme?

Answer: NO

5. Have you earned a doctoral degree?

Answer: NO

Optional Inquiry:
1. Please describe briefly how the Japan Foundation Fellowship experience influenced your career.

Answer: My Japan Foundation Fellowship allowed me to return to Japan for doctoral research. At the end of my fellowship in 1976, I realized that at that time, there were simply too many PhDs in Japanese literature chasing too few academic job openings. I then decided to stay in Japan so as to use my Japanese skills and eventually found my way into journalism. While my role has been extremely minor, I believe that as managing editor and columnist at Newsweek Japan and as a commentator, I have had more of an opportunity to influence Japan-U.S. relations and the Japanese public's understanding of world affairs than I ever would have as a scholar of medieval Japanese poetry. And it is because of the Japan Foundation Fellowship that I was in the right place to make this career transition.

2. The Japan Foundation is planning to create a network or forum among past Japan Foundation fellows. Please let us know if you have any suggestions in terms of themes, format, etc.

Answer: Themes: I would suggest practical topics such as career opportunities and job openings. Format: Utilizing the more popular existing social networks, such as LinkedIn and Facebook, might make it more likely that a new network or forum would actually be used.