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About us

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The International Institute of American Studies (IIAS) at Doshisha University was established in 1958. It found its permanent home in Shikokan Building, Karasuma Campus in 2012.


In 1864, the founder of Doshisha University, Joseph Hardy Neesima left feudal Japan for America with his dream and vision to see the world beyond Japan while he defied an overseas travel ban at the end of samurai period.
His philosophy and vision behind his fearless actions lives on the research philosophy of the International Institute of American Studies today.

IIAS has been conducting research in a wide range of academic disciplines regarding the United States of America. A focus of research at the institute is not limited to traditional academic disciplines. Responding to an increasingly globalized world today, the institute seeks to expand its research focus across different disciplines to understand America in a global context, and continues to carry on Neesima's philosophy.

Community Outreach

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When Joseph Hardy Neesima was in the U.S, he responded to his friends who were overly curious about Japan and said

"I will try the best I can to inform you."

The institute's mission is to carry on his philosophy and effort to make meaningful communication among people of different backgrounds for peace and understanding. To carry this mission, the institute seeks to stimulate scholarly as well as public interest regarding America through conducting outreach programs, providing the variety of resources available to the public and hosting periodic public symposia/lectures/ seminars.

What does the International Institute of American Studies at Doshisha University do exactly?

The international Institute of American Studies' mission is to promote and advance research that illuminates the study of America across fields, disciplines and faculties of Doshisha University. The institute carries out the mission through a variety of programs and activities such as...

  • Conducting research
  • Supporting the "Bumon Kenkyu" projects
  • Coordinating activities concerning America among the various faculties
  • Conducting an collaborative study with international scholars from wide range of disciplines
  • Collecting and organizing all forms of material including original papers, interviews, monographes publications, formal proceedings
  • Sharing all available research datas and materials from a research project conducted by International Institute of American Studies
  • Conducting outreach program such as lectures, conferences, and symposia
  • Publishing Doshisha American Studies Journal
  • Supporting any research inquiry regarding American Studies
  • Anything to achieve the mission of this institute