The bilateral relationship between Australia and Japan is a close and long-standing one. While our governments and think tanks nurture the ongoing relationship, it is important that the next generation of leaders are also aware of the issues facing both Japan and the global community and are equipped to address them.

Dr Paul Howard engaging with students from Miyazaki Nobeoka High School.

Dr Paul Howard, Department of Business Strategy and Innovation and member of the Griffith Asia Institute convened two workshops for visiting Japanese high school students from Miyazaki Nobeoka High School and Kumamoto Hitoyoshi High School.

The lectures were arranged by the Griffith University International Business Development unit as part of the itinerary for a short-term language course. 

In both cases, the theme of the brief lecture was ‘Japan-Australia relations and globalisation’ followed by a workshop on being a global citizen.  

Dr Howard said, ‘For the workshop, we considered some major issues facing Japan and the world.’

Students were put into groups where they identified an issue they wished to focus on and then worked together to compose some actions that could be taken to address the issue. Each group had a spokesperson who delivered the findings.

‘The students were here to develop their English as well, so this was all done in a relaxed, non-competitive way,’ Howard said. 

‘Students really engaged with their chosen issues and came up with some great ideas as to how those issues could be addressed.’

‘The enthusiasm with which students had in coming up with ideas in response to some important problems was quite extraordinary.  If that represents the future citizen-led leadership of our region, then we are in good hands.’