‘Japanese Prime Ministers and Party Leadership’ by Prof. Yu Uchiyama (University of Tokyo)
1-2 PM Wednesday 19th April 2023
Co-op Lecture Theatre, Minerva Building (MB0312) or via teams: Click here to join the meeting
What are the features of Japanese prime ministers as party leaders? How and why they have changed over the last twenty years? This talk focuses on three dimensions: party centralisation, internal cohesion, and leadership security. Reforms on these dimensions have strengthened the position of Prime Minister. Yet, a considerable number of prime ministers in the 21st century had short tenures of about one year. While the personalisation of politics has made the position of popular prime ministers more secure, it has made unpopular prime ministers highly vulnerable. A comparison between Japanese and UK prime ministers illustrates this paradox.
Yu Uchiyama is a professor of Political Science at the University of Tokyo, Japan, and a visiting scholar at SOAS. Prior to entering the academic world, he worked at then Ministry of International Trade and Industry (currently Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) of Japan. He obtained his Ph.D. in Political Science from University of Tokyo. His research interests are mainly in Japanese politics and comparative politics of advanced democracies. He is currently working on comparative study of leadership in Japan and the U.K. and analysis of the UK-Japan economic partnership. His publications include Koizumi and Japanese Politics: Reform Strategies and Leadership Style, Routledge, 2010