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Education and research for raising global talent
Aiming to create an international hub where exceptional minds come together

Photo: Kazumi Shimizu

Kazumi Shimizu
Head of the Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy Unit
Professor, Faculty of Political Science and Economics
Director, Waseda Institute of Political Economy


Various aspects of the current world present challenges for Japan, such as the migration of people (e.g., immigrants, refugees), the construction of multilateral economic cooperation systems (e.g., the Trans-Pacific Partnership), a social security system capable of coping with an aging society, and environmental conservation policies (including measures against global warming) approached from a global perspective. These issues are not only domestic—they are global and transcend Japanese borders. Each is characterized by a complex combination of political and economic aspects and cannot be solved without collaboration between political science and economics using interdisciplinary methodologies. In other words, every social problem we face today requires collaboration between political scientists and economists from a global viewpoint if a solution is to be found. For this reason, The Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy Unit was instituted in 2014 as one of the model units of the Waseda University Top Global University Project.

The Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy Unit was established to systematically offer educational programs which meet the highest global standards in the fields of political science, economics, and managerial economics for students and researchers who can contribute to the global society as global citizens. To achieve this goal, the Waseda University Top Global University Project determined to become one of the leading universities in the world, established the Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy, having in mind collaboration with faculty members mainly from the Faculty of Political Science and Economics, as well as the Faculty of Commerce and the Faculty of Social Sciences.

Instead of making policy recommendations simply based on ideas and speculations, this unit aims to analyze facts, statistics and big data by machine learning and deep learning, develop an ability to make policy proposals based on empirical evidence obtained and knowledge of political science and economics, and thoroughly teach students such kind of empirical thinking. This ability is a necessary skill in any field, and fostering talent with such ability is one of the roles required f top universities in the world today. To that end, it becomes crucial to increase the research abilities of the unit members and the ability to disseminate research outcomes. The Positive/Empirical Analysis of Political Economy utilizes the Visiting Professorship System, which invites excellent faculty members from overseas for a short period of time, and the Joint Appointment System, which jointly appoints faculty members with excellent universities abroad, to realize international cooperation both in terms of education and research. Ultimately, I look forward to creating an international hub where exceptional talents come together in political science, economics, and corporate economics.

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