Media October 2014

News in Brief

Confab advises close bilateral ties

The UK–Japan 21st Century Group has published the recommendations decided at its 31st annual conference in Hakone on 16–18 May, according to a press release dated 29 August.

The think tank said Japan’s drive to double foreign investment by 2020 would be aided by treating foreign firms in Japan the same as Japanese firms. It encouraged the relationship between Japanese investors in UK regions and local educational institutions to provide a skills base for the future.

The group also agreed that the transfer of British experience and knowledge in the field of gender diversity would be valuable to Japan.

Good and bad of new lifestyle

Japanese adjusting to life in the UK are at risk of mental health problems as a result of communication difficulties and the “unpredictability of British life”, The Japan Times reported on 29 August.

London-based counsellor and psychotherapist Yuko Nippoda said problems occur when the romanticised image her clients have of the country do not match reality. Moving from a “collectivist” culture to one where the needs of the individual are paramount also proves difficult.

However, patients can also benefit. “Living in Britain, Japanese are often able to find their sense of self and identity”, Nippoda said.

Royal to study in Midlands

Princess Mako has embarked on postgraduate studies in England, Japan Today reported on 17 September.
The 22-year old daughter of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko will study for a Master’s degree in museology at the University of Leicester, where she will live in a students’ dorm.

The one-year programme will allow her to build on her previous studies: she read English at the University of Edinburgh in 2012. She is expected to return to Tokyo to attend official duties over the new year period.

J-brand thanks British style tradition for business success

A Tokyo fashion brand inspired by British style is set to target UK consumers, The Telegraph reported on 6 September.

Tomorrowland Co., Ltd., which sells its contemporary own-label menswear, as well as that of foreign designers, will launch its autumn 2014 collection in Selfridge & Co’s Oxford Street shop.

Hiroyuki Sasaki, founder of the 36-year-old brand, attributes part of its success to his use of the UK’s menswear tradition.

“We take inspiration from classic British style. We actually recreated English materials in Japan using exclusive fabrics, treatments and finishes only available in Japan”, he said.

Spurs youth prefers Samurai Blue squad

Attacking midfielder Cy Goddard has turned down advances from England national football scouts in the hope of playing for Japan, The Daily Mail reported on 13 September.

A product of Tottenham Hotspur, the 17-year-old half-Japanese half-English player has pledged his allegiance to the Samurai Blue squad, saying it has been his ambition to play for them since he was 10.

Goddard made his international debut for the Japan Under-16 side in 2013 at the Montaigu Tournament in France, after having impressed scouts from the Japanese Football Association with his technical ability.

He is currently taking Japanese lessons after training sessions to improve his communication skills.

Film offers insight into social role of love hotels

A new documentary set to reveal inner workings of a love hotel in Osaka is to be screened in London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Daily Mail reported on 22 September.

Phil Cox, the British filmmaker behind the film, said that by providing accommodation to rich and poor, old and young, the love hotel offered “a window into Japanese society”.

A concept which began in the 1960s, the hotels are currently said to have a total yearly turnover of more than £23bn. It is estimated that 1.4mn couples visit a love hotel each day, to rent a room by the hour or for overnight stays.

Traditionally places of escape, they often feature themed rooms, outfits for dressing up, and karaoke and amusement facilities.