【Report】AJI International Workshop, “From the Frontier of Asian Diaspora Studies: Perspectives on Migrants, Refugees, and Returnee Diasporas” was held!

On February 15, International Workshop on "From the Frontier of Asian Diaspora Studies: Perspectives on Migrants, Refugees, and Returnee Diaspora" was held in hybrid way and hosted by Asian-Japan Research Institute (AJI), Ritsumeikan University.

Presenters and discussants from France, South Korea, Malaya, and Japan participated in this workshop, and Dr. LEE Jinhye (Foreign Postdoctoral Fellow of Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) moderated this workshop. Also, each session has respective moderators. Dr. Aoi MOCHIZUKI (Senior Researcher, AJI), Dr. NUR Izzati Binti Mohamad Norzilan (Senior Lecturer, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia), and Dr. LEE Jung-Eun (Visiting Researcher, AJI).

In the twenty-first century, issues of immigration and refugee have gained worldwide attention. Also, as research on mobility has grown in its importance, academic interests in multiracialism, multiculturalism, multiracial coexistence, and potential chauvinism is heightening. Furthermore, after the Russo-Ukrainian War, the current social issues surrounding the migration and settlement of refugees have further increased interest in such research in a more global context. Looking at the existing theories of migration, refugees, and diasporas, they have developed around immigrant nations in Western societies focusing on the diverse processes of cultural adaptation (assimilation into other cultures) and multicultural coexistence. Additionally, in recent years, theories of the above interests have been elaborated and developed in Asian context, including methodological re-examination.

In this workshop, researchers about various regions in the world were invited to discuss the wide range of issues concerning of migration, refugees, and diasporas. Each presenter presented a variety of empirical cases along with multicultural symbiosis policies and theories in each region.

Associate Professor Kathy OKUMURA (Kobe College) made her presentation about labor migration of technical interns in Japan. Dr. Aoi MOCHIZUKI (Senior Researcher, AJI) took up the issue regarding the acceptance of refugees. Dr. Gustavo MEIRELES (Lecturer, Kanda University of International Studies) discussed the return migration of Japanese-line Americans and multicultural symbiosis in their settlement. Professor KIM Kyunghak (Dept. of Anthropology, Chonnam National University) argued the return migration and settlement of the Korean diaspora in the former Soviet Union region to Korea. Dr. LEE Jinhye (Senior Researcher, AJI) made her presentation about the Korean migration and refugee policy in South Korea. Dr. CHUANG Ya-Han focused on the social issues and challenges surrounding Asian diaspora in Europe in the case of Chinese immigrants (Postdoc Research Fellow, CERI Sciences Po Paris)

Dr. Mochizuki delivering her presentation

Dr. Meireles making his presentation

Professor Kim delivering his presentation (on screen)

報告を行うDr.李眞惠(左)と討論者の一人Dr. Izzati
(Left) Dr. Lee Jinhye talking about her research
(Right) Dr. Nur participating as a discussant

報告を行うDr. Ya-Han Chuang
Dr. Chuang making her presentation

In addition, this workshop invited three experts from Islamic economics as discussants: Dr. Mohd Khairy Kamarudin, Dr. Nur Izzati Binti Mohammad Norzilan, and Dr. HAMDAN, Mohammad Naqib Bin. All of them belongs to Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and they shared their comments with participants from the perspective of Malaysia that is one of the representative multi-ethnic countries in Asia. Through their insightful comments and discussion shared by participants enabled this workshop to deeply see the ground of understanding on diaspora studies. Especially, these discussants shared the view on Malaysia concerning its education system and social welfare for minorities in the society, and this case made the Q&A session quite active and meaningful.
討論の様子(左からDr. Izzati, Dr. Khairy, Dr. Naqib)
In the Q&A session (From left: Dr. Nur, Dr. Kamarudin, and Dr. Hamdan

Lastly, this workshop was held in order to discuss social issues and challenges involved with multicultural coexistence among migrants, refugees and returning diasporas in Asia and Europe. Participants could exchange meaningful views with each other from the diverse cases about coexistence with migrants coupled with multicultural policies. Also, this workshop could share various researches with general publics. We also hope that we would build meaningful networks with researchers of migration studies. In this sense, this workshop could advance this network for future.
Picture of participants for this international workshop