Japan’s International Cooperation in Education: History and Prospects

  • #Books and Reports

International development cooperation has undergone considerable changes over the 70 years since its commencement in the wake of World War II. Such changes have led to a shift in the core paradigm that drives development cooperation. This new paradigm, embodied by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), marks a new era of global governance in international development. Amid this evolving global landscape, Japan’s development cooperation is also at a critical juncture.

As Japan looks toward the future of its development cooperation in education, it is important to document and reflect upon the histories that have shaped the present. This book is the first to comprehensively document the history of Japanese development cooperation in education from the 1950s to mid-2010s, examining its evolution and characteristics in depth. Each chapter features historical and empirical analyses utilizing policy documents and project data, opening possibilities for exploring new forms of cooperation in education. Such comprehensive and cross-cutting analyses provide implications for Japan’s international education cooperation in the era of global governance.

The book is organized around the three core subsectors of Japan’s international education cooperation, namely, basic education, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and higher education, taking a balanced, holistic approach that highlights the interdependence of these subsectors. Further, the roles and achievements of other stakeholders and programs such as international organizations, NGOs, Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV), and ODA loans are examined as increasingly important contributors to Japan’s international education cooperation.

This volume is a product of the project “Japan’s International Cooperation in Education: History and Prospects,” implemented by JICA Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development. Based on a Japanese version published by University of Tokyo Press in September 2019, this book has been revised for an international audience.

This book is available in hard copy and as an e-book and can be purchased from Springer by accessing the first link under “Related links” below. Chapters 1, 3, 5, 9, 12 and 15 are Open Access and available for download from Springer’s website. Other chapters can be read online by accessing Springer's SharedIT system (the second link under “Related links” provides access links to all chapters). A video overview of the book by the editors and video introductions for most chapters are also available.

Note: The “project list provided by the Review Committee on Japan's International Cooperation in Education” referenced in the book has been organized into three separate lists (Basic Education, TVET, and Higher Education) which are available as PDF files in “Downloads” below.

Date of issuance
April 2022
Springer Singapore
Number of pages
365 page
  • #Education
Research area
Human Development
Research project