ASIANetwork Resarch Program

ASIANetwork Freeman Foundation
2011 Student-Faculty Fellows Program
for Collaborative Research in Asia

Webster University

Japan’s Youth: Disaster and Rebuilding for a Common Future

From May-June 2011, I joined a team of 5 students and a professor as a selected group to travel to Japan to conduct research. Originally, the project was to be about certain topics pertaining to Japanese culture (such as feminist movements vs. traditional culture, fashion, media, companies, government, etc), however, after the devastating events that took place beginning  on March 11, 2011, our research team decided to change our topics to that of more recent events.

Our research began in Yokohama, and we traveled from there to Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, Kyoto, and finally to Hiroshima. We interviewed over 1000 students and faculty from schools around Japan through videos, in person interviews, questionnaires, classroom discussions and anonymous submissions.

"My role in this joint research project is to examine the role of the Japanese media in covering the March 11th disaster and subsequent developments, and more importantly to discern what the views of young Japanese adults are about this coverage. The centrality of the media in covering such events is readily apparent. However, my objective is to discover whether or not the Japanese people, in the immediate aftermath of this disaster, feel that coverage was accurate. Preliminary findings suggest that about half the young adult population who filled out our questionnaires and who we interviewed and observed feel that media coverage has been accurate. Nonetheless, many have asked foreigners about non-Japanese coverage of the events and discovered that there are surprising differences. The other half of these young people feel that media coverage has not been complete, accurate and unbiased."

Miyajima, Hiroshima, Japan (2011)

The other student/faculty members involved were:

Miranda Guiles
Cory Schmit
Becky Serfass
Kristen Paxton
Dr. Roy Tamashiro

 You can find more information about ASIANetwork as well as the Student-Faculty Programs and more on their main website at:

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