Lecture Announcement: Jacques Hymans' Tokyo talk on Barriers to geothermal energy exploration in Japan

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Jacques Hymans' Tokyo talk on Barriers to geothermal energy exploration in Japan

The Contemporary Japan Group at the Institute of Social Science (ISS, or Shaken),

University of Tokyo, welcomes you to a lecture by Jacques E.C. Hymans (University of Southern California)

Getting Steamed: Local-Level Impediments to Geothermal Energy Exploration in Japan


DATE AND PLACE: Thursday, October 26, 2017 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. at Akamon Sōgō Kenkyūtō Room 549, Institute of Social Science, University of Tokyo, Hongo Campus, University of Tokyo


Why wasn’t post-oil shock Japan able to make greater progress toward improving its energy security, and in particular, increasing its domestic energy production? Beyond the obvious fact that Japan does not have substantial hydrocarbon fuel reserves, it is often argued that the central authorities’ desire to increase domestic energy production was greatly hampered by local “not in my backyard” (NIMBY) resistance to new power plant siting. This paper investigates the question of local-level impediments to Japan’s exploitation of a kind of energy that has gotten almost no attention in the energy policy literature: geothermal energy. Contrary to popular belief, Japan is not totally bereft of domestic energy resources; it actually has vast untapped geothermal energy potential. The paper sheds a new light both on the geothermal energy puzzle and on the more general dynamics of power plant siting in Japan.


Jacques E.C. Hymans is a tenured associate professor of international relations at the University of Southern California and currently a visiting associate professor at Waseda University. His research focuses on international security and on national identity in various world regions. Hymans' most recent book, Achieving Nuclear Ambitions: Scientists, Politicians, and Proliferation (Cambridge University Press, 2012) was awarded the $100,000 Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order, the American Political Science Association Don K. Price Award for best book on science, technology and environmental politics, and the National Academy for Public Administration Louis Brownlow Award for best book on public administration. The paper to be presented at the workshop is co-authored with Fumiya Uchikoshi, a University of Tokyo Ph.D student in Sociology. 

The ISS Contemporary Japan Group provides English-speaking residents of the Tokyo area with an opportunity to hear cutting-edge research in social science and related policy issues, as well as a venue for researchers and professionals in or visiting Tokyo to present and receive knowledgeable feedback on their latest research projects. Admission is free and advance registration is not required. Everyone is welcome.
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Gregory W. NOBLE (noble@iss.u-tokyo.ac.jp)

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