Japan’s Future, The Shining ‘Nadeshikos’


Ever since the ‘3.11’, the establishments of Japan, i.e. governments, politics, mega companies, scientists, are somewhat weak, failing to appeal their existence in this global world.  They seem to be merely running around, not knowing what to do at this national disaster. People who will automatically think of ‘reasons why something can not be done’ will not be much of a help, especially at a time when we have to deal with such a huge issue.

You may not notice much by watching just Japanese media, but several big changes are taking place in the world today.  The great success of the ‘Nadeshiko Japan’ took place precisely at this timing when Japan was at a loss in this trend.

Recently, I had two opportunities to meet energetic ‘Nadeshikos’.

One is the annual L’Oreal Women in Science Fellowship award ceremony.   I am a member of the committee of the L’Oreal-UNESCO Women in Science Award, so I have participated in the awarding ceremony for these several years.

The venue was decorated beautifully, as always, in milk color tone which is very like L’Oreal.  I sensed that L’Oreal was working hard on PR since there were more media and cameras at the entrance than the years before.

Among the participants were the President of L’Oreal Japan and Dr. Koichiro Matsuura, former Director General of UNESCO who arranged the collaboration between UNESCO and the L’Oreal Women in Science Award while he was at the position.  Four wonderful awardees were selected this year.  In addition, a special award was presented to the Science Angels of Tohoku University.  I found out that Ms. Meisa Kuroki, a popular Japanese actress and singer, was invited to the ceremony, which explains the reason for more media persons with cameras.

Another was the International Conference for Women in Business organized by Ms. Kaori Sasaki, chair of e-Woman.  The conference started from 8 in the Saturday morning with the nice lectures by Ms. Fujiyo Ishiguro, an active business leader and Ms. Yukiko Arai, Senior Specialist at International Labor Organization.  Then, Dr. Yoko Ishikura and I had dialogue for 30 minutes which we enjoyed very much.  After the first session was a panel session titled ‘Japan’s Communication Skills’ with Ms. Ishiguro which was a wonderful opportunity to meet with lots of energetic women.  I think the percentage of men there was about 5% or so, but they were all very nice, mostly ‘out of a box type’ people, whom I very much enjoyed talking to.

I expect a lot from women, especially younger women, for the sake of the better future of Japan.  It’s ‘Nadeshikos’ that we count on.