An international symposium entitled “Women Taking the Lead: Women’s International and Social Leadership in East and Southeast Asia” took place on December 5, 2017, Room 201, Inter-faculty Building 2 at Ochanomizu University with approximately 140 people attending. Prof. Karen A. Shire and Dr. Naoko Oki planned and ran the symposium. Prof. Shire is Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Institute for Global Leadership (IGL), Ochanomizu University and Professor at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. Dr. Oki is Project Lecturer of the IGL.
Part I of the symposium featured a keynote speech by Dr. Haruko Hirose, Trustee of Ochanomizu University. In her presentation “The Road I Took,” Dr. Hirose recounted how she built her career at government agencies, the United Nations and as a diplomat, and how she performed her duties as a leader. She also talked about the skills and expertise required to demonstrate leadership.
Part II was a discussion by four panelists from Indonesia, China, Japan, and South Korea —Ms. Anis Hidayah, Executive Director of Migrant CARE and Director of Center for Migration Studies, Migrant CARE (a leading Jakarta-based and Indonesian NGO); Ms. Yuan Feng, Co-founder of EQUALITY (an NGO in China); Prof. Keiko Ikeda, Shizuoka University, a specialist on disaster response; and Ms. Jay Jung-Sik Choi, General Secretary of UNI Global Union Korea Liaison Council. Prof. Sung-Nam Cho of Ewha Womans University served as discussant and Prof. Shire as moderator.
The four panelists introduced their activities in detail, focusing on the kind of efforts they made while developing their social movement in their own countries and internationally. After that, they had a lively discussion about the common points and differences among their individual efforts, what methods they have used to achieve the goals of their movements (such as new policy proposals), how they demonstrated their leadership at the times, and what types of networks they built and expanded. Additionally, Prof. Cho summarized the panel discussion and spoke about future issues. While many attendees asked questions during the Q&A session, the six discussion members answered, and gave additional comments, delving deeper into the topics of the discussion. Finally, the symposium ended with great success.
Authors: Ms. Honoka Omochi, Academic Assistant at IGL, Ochanomizu University and Dr. Naoko Oki, Project Lecturer at IGL, Ochanomizu University