Below are recent program posts; additional resources for the program are available at right.
Land Use and Iriaichi: Recognizing Change and Comparing Cultures - The past 10 days were spent in a rural Japanese village on the northern side of Mt. Fuji. We lived in a nearly 200-year-old farmhouse and spent the evenings swimming in nearby Lake Sai, one of the region’s famous five lakes. During our time there we conducted a research project at a number of sites […]
Management of Forests and Land: The Pacific Northwest to Japan - Here you can find my latest blog post comparing forest management practices in the Pacific Northwest and Japan.
Summiting Mt. Fuji: A Natural and Cultural Experience - We’ve done it! We have finally summited Japan’s iconic mountain, Mt. Fuji, one of the world’s most picturesque stratovolcanoes. We have felt the bitter cold air from Japan’s tallest peak and accomplished something spectacular. During the approximately 11 hour ascent, we had plenty of time to ponder the lessons we have learned since coming to […]
The Modern Traditional Village: A Perspective on Continuity and Change in Rural Japan - After leaving the hustle and bustle of Tokyo, we now find ourselves in the Japanese countryside, living in a large, old house that we have come to know fondly as the “Farm House.” The Farm House rests on the edge of Saiko Iyashi no Sato Nenba, a reconstructed village that attracts Japanese tourists. The slower […]
Mt. Fuji from Top to Bottom: Spring Water and Community Formation - Soils that have lots of large pores allow water to pass through them faster, and therefore are poor retainers of surface water. Geologists use the term “infiltration rate” to describe the rate at which water seeps into the ground. Mt. Fuji, being mostly composed of permeable rock, has a very high infiltration rate. Once the water […]
Little Dog in Big Japan: Dachshunds in Japan as Evidence for Local/Global Forces - Dachshund being held at festival in Enoshima. As I continue my journey in Japan, I have been introduced to many novel ways of looking at everyday life activities that relate to the situated themes of this program. The local/global theme is one that I see constantly whether I am in the depths of downtown Tokyo, […]
The Influence of Mt. Fuji’s Inscription as a World Heritage Site On and Around the 5 Lakes Region - Header Image: Tourists gathering around one of the famous ponds at Oshino Hakkai The Imagining the Global dyad “local/global” was very pertinent during my research days on the north side of Mt. Fuji. There I was able to visit some very historic areas and to observe and work with the Fujisan Club, a non-profit organization that leads trash […]
From amusement parks to neighborhood dogs: a mix of global and local culture in Japan - While being strapped into a roller coaster called Eejanaika at the Fuji-Q Highland amusement park, I could almost swear that I was at Six Flags or the Santa Cruz Boardwalk back in California, given the lines of smiling tourists in shorts and flip flops, smells of churros and soda pop, and muffled, indiscernible words blasting […]
Old wood, New niches: Change and Continuity in Japan 2014 - During our field research situated on the Kenmarubi lava flow, I gained a small insight connecting directly to our program’s “continuity/change” dyad. This area was heavily deforested before and during World War II for timber, so there was a need to reseed the area and develop a new forest. Because this area is extremely rocky […]
From Common Lands to Highland - As I write this post I am sitting on a bench surrounded by excited children, massive golden cat sculptures, and a giant blue roller coaster with cars shaped like a ukulele-playing hamster riding on a cloud. In the distance there is a hazy but still majestic Mt. Fuji. Immersed in these sights and sounds, it is […]