Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies


Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies was founded in July 2007, and arose initially within the College of Sociology during its celebration of fiftieth anniversary. Its aim has been to make progress in research and education, and to over decisive insight of the distinct character of the field of urban studies in the Graduate School of Sociology.

About Us

The Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies was founded on the Rikkyo University Ikebukuro Campus in July 2007. It currently deals with a broad range of studies relating to cities. In fact, the city itself has long been an object of interdisciplinary research in social science. The city also motivates urban research on a global scale because metropolitan life cannot avoid political, economic and socio-cultural developments and the fabric of such relationships go far beyond municipal and national boundaries. It was in 2008 that we commenced the annual publication of a scientific journal that specialized in urban studies in a global context.

The founding director for the Institute, Professor Yasushi Matsumoto, has been industrious with initiating and organizing various open seminars and study meetings. We have also commenced a regular International Symposium concerned with Asian cities bringing together urban studies specialists from Japan, China, and South Korea. The inaugural collaborative symposium was held in 2010 at Rikkyo University; subsequently, in 2011, it was convened at Tongji University, Shanghai; in 2012 it was held at the University of Seoul. We have continued this with collaborative annual workshops and in 2017 members of the Institute participated in 2017 City and Society International Forum, “Sustainable and Inclusive Development: Diverse Practices of Global Cities,” which was hosted by Tongji University, Shanghai, for their 110th Anniversary. In addition to the continuous research projects and annual workshop with these Korean and Chinese Universities, we have, since 2015, commenced a regular an international collaborative symposium with the Centre for Population and Urban Research, Monash University. The success of this symposium is evident in some publications and has coincided with a successful students exchange program between the Monash University Faculty of Arts and the College of Sociology, Rikkyo University. In January 2020, an international symposium, “Social Cohesion and Urban Ethnicity” was held at Monash University, Melbourne. This was the sixth annual collaborative meeting between Rikkyo and Monash Universities, and this Symposium was jointly organized by three research centers; the Rikkyo Institute of Global Urban Studies, the Monash Migration and Inclusion Centre, and the Institute of Urban Sciences from the University of Seoul.

Since the establishment of the Institute was a response to needs of contemporary society, our activities have developed to reflect ongoing social and cultural developments. The role and responsibility of the Institute has become greater as it has become a central symbol of an urban-styled University. In order to seek solutions for urban questions, we must attempt to give much needed support to highly relevant research projects.
Thank you for your assistance and cooperation.
About the Institute
Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies was founded in July 2007, and arose initially within the College of Sociology during its celebration of fiftieth anniversary. Its aim has been to make progress in research and education, and to over decisive insight of the distinct character of the field of urban studies in the Graduate School of Sociology. The Institute exists to encourage the growing potential of urban studies within the Faculty and to improve the quality of research and education as expressed on the emerging urban studies tradition of the College of Sociology. The Institute aimed at conducting its activities by taking full advantage of the campus located in the central city. It has long held out the aspiration of participating in a significant inter-disciplinary development of urban studies. In time, the Institute has become an independent research institution, as demonstrated when it was separated institutionally from the College of Sociology, and its members have henceforth been from inter-departmental domains with the participation of researchers from across the University.
It is intended to develop the Institute as a center for inter-disciplinary urban studies with a comprehensive global perspective. It intends to take full advantage of the University’s central city campus. The Institute sees itself engaged in fundamental four activities:
  1. Promoting research on urban issues and related educational activities;
  2. Collecting books and other materials necessary for advanced research and education;
  3. Collaborating with research institutions and scholars outside the University that share the same interests; and
  4. Organizing lectures and workshops.
In an era when the restructuring of urban life is well under way due to the impact of globalization and the increasing significance of local responses, the role of this Institute has become more significant by the day.
Ron Korenaga (College of Sociology)

Assistant Director
Kimihito Sakurai (College of Economics)

Makiko Ota (College of Sociology)
Kenichi Ohashi (College of Tourism)
Ariyoshi Ogawa (College of Low and Politics)
Motohiro Koizumi (College of Sociology)
Shiho Nishiyama (College of Sociology)
Yoshiaki Edwin Noro (College of Sociology)
Tetsuo Mizukami (College of Sociology)

Specially Appointed Researchers
Yoshiya Ichinose
Yutaka Iwatate
Ken Shimizu
Junko Furukawa
Yasushi Matsumoto
Tomomi Mita

Takuya Onoda
Yukio Kobayashi
Michiko Hosobuchi


Workshop for Global Urban Studies
Workshop for Global Urban Studies was originally organized by the professors and graduate students of the Urban Research Field in the Graduate School of Sociology, Rikkyo University, and constitutes an important part of activities of the Institute for Global Urban Studies. It is to provide presentations on the research project of the Institute and to hold some sessions inviting young scholars from outside. Please send email to g-kenkyu@ml.rikkyo.ac.jp if you are interested in joining. We will send you an invitation e-mail.
Publication: Global Urban Studies
Most articles and essays carried in Global Urban Studies can be downloaded from the following link.
Collaborative International Workshops
In 2010, the international workshop was held at Rikkyo University, an initiative to support research of Asian urban culture. It was the first internationally collaborative event between the Institute and scholars from the University of Seoul, Tongji University and Fudan University. The second symposium was held in 2011 at Tongji University, while the third was convened in 2012 by the University of Seoul and featured creative city policies. We intend to rotate the annual conference between the three cities; Tokyo, Shanghai, and Seoul.

The 5th major conference, “Global City and Local Culture”, was organized in the ancient water city of Tongli Town in the Jiangsu Province in 2014. The host institutions were the World Heritage Institute of Training and Research for Asia and the Pacific Region (WHITRAP Shanghai) under the auspices of UNESCO, and the Department of Sociology, School of Social Development and Public Policy, Fudan University. One of the major events of the day was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Tongji University and Tongli Town a ceremony which complemented the informative sessions. It was a very good opportunity for the participants to witness this significant and historic event. In the next year, October 2015, the International Conference “Locality, History and Culture in Urban Regeneration” was organized by the University of Seoul and SSK Research Group on Glocal Culture and Regional Development at the University of Seoul. The conference has sought to bring together East Asian scholars and experts who investigate contemporary issues arising from urban regeneration, generating new ideas and discourse that can contribute to efforts aimed at improving the prevailing urban conditions of East Asian cities.

The successful international workshop, “The Wind from the Future: Sustainable Urban Development in East Asian Cities,” was held in Tokyo in October 2016. This was initially planned as a bilateral project between Rikkyo University and the University of Seoul for promoting international scientific exchanges between Japan and Korea. Prof. Yasushi Matsumoto from Rikkyo University and Prof. Dong-Kyun Im from the University of Seoul had jointly applied for support to the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). In addition to the support from these two Universities, that symposium has featured the contributions of Chinese academics, scholars from Tongji University and Fudan University.

In October 2017, an international forum, “Sustainable and Inclusive Development: Diverse Practices of Global Cities” was hosted by Tongji University, cerebrating Tongji University’s 110th Anniversary. The forum was timed to commemorate this milestone as part of the World Cities Day Series. For the members of the Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies and the Department of Urban Sociology, the University of Seoul, it was the 8th conference reunion since 2010 symposium in Tokyo. But it was a much larger event than previous conferences due to Tongji University’s 110th. Anniversary. As well, some staff from the University of Seoul and Rikkyo University contributed papers.

And now, in the following year, instead of being held in Seoul, a Tokyo International Conference is now being organized to coincide with the 60th anniversary celebrations of Rikkyo University’s College of Sociology.

Over and above collaborative study programs and events, since 2015 an annual workshop has been organized by the Institute and the Centre for Population and Urban Research, Melbourne, at Robert Menzies Building, Monash University. The main activities between the two institutes will continue to collaborative research in migration, social cohesion/ inclusion/ exclusion and identity. The fourth joint conference, “Urban Community Lives and Migrants ‘Social Cohesion,” was organized with Social and Population Research Centre (former Centre for Population and Urban Research), in February 2018. As we have developed broader research programs and activities, some other experts in urban studies will also be involved in the 2018 conference.

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Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies

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