The Paralympics are coming to Tokyo! Join us for this special event co-hosted by the Paralliance – a coalition of 20 international chambers of commerce in Japan.
Date: August 23, 2021
Time: 18:30–19:30; optional networking 19:30–20:00
Speaker: Dr. Mark Bookman, historian of disability in Japanese and global contexts
Registration/Cancellation Deadline: August 23 (14:00)
This event will be hosted as a webinar using Webex Meetings. Instructions for joining the virtual meeting will be sent to registered attendees after the above-stated deadline.
The Paralympics often improve accessibility for people with an impairment in the country where the Games are hosted. In fact, the Games are an excellent way to raise awareness about such people, as well as the ways in which they can lead productive and happy lives. This was particularly true in 1964, when problems faced by people with an impairment in Japan often went unseen. Indeed, the 1964 Paralympics, supported very visibly by then-Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko, put a whole new level of capability and way of life on display—not only for the Japanese athletes and their families and friends, but for all of Japanese society.
In the 21st century, our definition of impairment has significantly broadened as Japan’s rapidly aging society has led to a demographic shift. Leaders and citizens alike have come to realize that the needs and goals of individuals with a physical impairment often align with those of the elderly. Accordingly, they have started to leverage available knowledge, tools, and resources that will enable them to lead full and enjoyable lives.
Join Dr. Mark Bookman, a historian of disability in Japanese and global contexts at the University of Tokyo. He will use the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, which will take place August 24–September 5, and the 1964 Paralympics as case studies to explain how activists and legislation have both failed and succeeded to point a way forward for people with an impairment, who, according to the United Nations, make up 15 percent of the world’s population. And if you believe there is a correlation between aging and impairment, then that number is actually closer to 100 percent of those who make it into their golden years. Indeed, with old age on the horizon, the day may come when you also need improved access.
About the Speaker
Mark Bookman is a historian of disability in Japanese and global contexts based at the University of Tokyo. He holds PhD and master of arts degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, and a bachelor of arts from Villanova University. Bookman’s research has been supported by various grants and awards, including a Fulbright U.S. Student Fellowship to Japan and a Japan Foundation Doctoral Fellowship. His scholarship on disability inclusion can be found in Japan Focus: The Asia-Pacific Journal and other peer-reviewed journals, as well as public-facing media outlets such as The Japan Times and Japan Today.
Outside of the academy, Bookman also works as an accessibility consultant. He has collaborated with government agencies and corporate entities in Japan, the United States, and Canada—as well as the International Paralympic Committee and the United Nations—on projects related to inclusive education, equitable transportation, and disaster risk management for diverse populations with impairments.
For additional information about Mark Bookman, see his website: www.bookmanresearch.com
About the Paralliance
This joint alliance of 20 international chambers of commerce in Japan was created to support the success of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. The Paralympics are a global celebration of diversity and inclusion, sporting achievement, and personal endeavor.
Members of the Paralliance are:
American Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Australia/New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Austrian Business Council
Belgian-Luxemborg Chamber of Commerce in Japan
British Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Japan
CCI France Japon
Danish Chamber of Commerce and Industry Japan
German Chamber of Commerce and Industry Japan
Greek Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Icelandic Chamber of Commerce Japan
Ireland Japan Chamber of Commerce
Italian Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Norwegian Chamber of Commerce in Japan
South African Chamber of Commerce Japan
Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Industry Japan
NOTE 1: This event is OFF THE RECORD.
NOTE 2: Please note that, as with all guest presentations, the content and comments of the speakers reflect their own opinions and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of the hosting organizations.
NOTE 3: If you have trouble joining the meeting, please click the link below for instructions. https://help.webex.com/en-us/nrbgeodb/Join-a-Webex-Meeting
As staff availability will be limited during the meeting, we recommend that you try our video conferencing system in advance of the meeting. Please test out the system at this link <https://www.webex.com/test-meeting.html>.