Kyoto University School of Public Health

Report: We welcomed Prof. Daniel Aldrich from Northeastern University

Generals 2023/08/04

In the afternoon of August 2, 2023, Kyoto University School of Public Health welcomed Prof. Daniel Aldrich and his undergraduate and graduate students from Northeastern University and other universities in the United States. The purpose of this visit was for US students to learn about Japanese culture, society and policies.

Firstly, Prof. Naoki Kondo of School of Public Health, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University gave a welcoming remark to the visitors. He introduced the concept of “making the community resilient by data-driven community organizing.” Professor Kondo explained to the students that correcting health disparities can be done based on data obtained by conducting regional diagnoses, connecting residents’ organizations and human resources and organizations in various sectors, and “organizing communities” to increase social capital.

After Prof. Kondo’s lecture, Prof. Aldrich and his students asked questions. In Prof. Aldrich class, stereotype of Japanese culture was discussed, that it is based on communitarian idea. The question was asked regarding how can the research results explain macro issues and micro issue at the community level. Also, another student asked about the role of gender norms and depression level, whether it has been seen more in recent years or has it been always like this since the past in Japan. Others asked about variation in effectiveness of community salon, measurement of social capital, disaster and recovery and gender norms, and how to encourage men’s participation to community activities.

We hope that this event was useful for the visiting students to enhance their understanding about improvement of health and wellbeing of people in Japan.