4th Brazil-Japan Seminar on Cultural Environments: CENTRALITIES, SPATIAL STRUCTURES AND TERRITORIAL DYNAMICS | Center for Southeast Asian Studies Kyoto University



Co-organization: Unit of Academic Knowledge Integration Studies of Kyoto University Research Coordination Alliance (UAKIS-KURCA), CIRAS-Asia-Pacific Area Studies Project

Date: 25 May 2018 (Fri.)
Place: Kyoto University, Inamori Foundation Memorial Building, 2nd floor (room 213)
Access: https://en.kyoto.cseas.kyoto-u.ac.jp/
Nearest train station: Jingu-Marutamachi St.
Languages: English, Portuguese
Contact: culturenvironment[at]cseas.kyoto-u.ac.jp

14:00~ Greetings (MURAKAMI Yusuke, KU-CSEAS)
14:05~ Theme’s rationale (Andrea URUSHIMA, KU-CSEAS)
14:15~ Presentation 1: Spatial Economy in the Era of Shrinking Population (HAMAGUCHI Nobuaki, Kobe U-RIEB)
14:45~ Presentation 2: Spatial Distribution of Cities, Landscape Change and Traditional Agriculture in the Study of the Tokushima Region (HAGIWARA Hachiro, Shikoku U-FMIS)
15:15~ Presentation 3: Rural Spaces in a Context of Intense Urbanization. The Paulista Macro Metropolis (Brazil) as a Comparative Base Study for the Kansai Region (Japan). (Roberta FONTAN, KU-CSEAS)
15:45~ Coffee Break
16:00~ Comments (SUMIDA Ikunori, KUFS-DELB; YAMAZAKI Keiichi, YNU-GSISS)
16:45~ General Discussion
17:30~ Closing

Brazil-Japan Seminar on Cultural Environments

The “Brazil-Japan Seminar on Cultural Environments” was created in 2015 with the objective of promoting the encounter of scholars interested in the debate about the processes of making, interpreting and interacting with cultural environments. This seminar serves as an interdisciplinary platform that aims at promoting the exchange and collaboration between Brazilian and Japanese scholars; between scholars engaged in research about Brazil and Japan; and between scholars interested in studies of a global scope that include Brazil and Japan as case studies.

The Relevance of “Cultural Environments”
Among the earliest records where the use of the expression “cultural environment ” was employed it is worth to cite the book “The geographic basis of society (1933)”, written by the American geographers Charles Clifford Huntington and Fred Albert Carlson. In that book, the geographers discussed how man interacts with the habitat from a point of view that was quite innovative at that time. They argued that man and his habitat appear to be the product of each other in a ‘dynamic’ process of change and interaction. In Japan, one of the first scholars to use the expression ‘bunka kankyō’ was the geographer Kojima Eiji in 1938. Although this is an example that demonstrates the early appearance of this expression within scholarly writings, it is rare to find it in other writings of the Prewar period in Japan. This expression began to be largely used and gained attention during the Postwar period, at first in the writings of scholars from education related fields interested in the debate of how the living environment of children affected learning. It was especially after the 1960s period that the expression ‘cultural environment bunka kankyō’ was definitively incorporated into the debate about the dynamic and interactive relations established between man and environment. The scope of the definition and amplitude of the use of the expression was then enlarged and influenced the apparition of original writings that included the article ‘Man’s physical characteristics and environment’, published in 1969. In this article, the anatomist and professor of Niigata University School of Medicine, Ogata Tamotsu, investigated rather the climatic and geologic alterations of the Jomon period were a cause of change in human daily life activities, that subsequently changed the physical characteristics of human bodies, a hypothesis which he tried to confirm through the study of skeletons.
Nowadays, the expression is largely used, with varied definitions, in writings produced by researchers from varied disciplines, such as, social sciences, environmental studies, architecture and planning, anthropology, among others. The broad, integrative and inclusive range of use of this expression allows the breeding of a debate of great actuality and relevance to our global society. In an effort to understand better the causes and effects of environmental change and its relation to human living this seminar will generate an academic debate that overcomes disciplinary limitations through an integrative approach to knowledge production. Participants in this seminar are invited to think about how humans live and interact with their surrounding environments, with a debate that will support to overcome the long-standing separation between nature and culture.

4th Session (FY2019) Specific Theme

This seminar will gather scholars from varied disciplinary backgrounds to discuss the mechanisms of formation, maintenance and decadence of centralities (political, economic, social and spatial ones) in their interlinked relationships with the spatial transformations occurring in rural and urban areas in Brazil and Japan. Among the topics to be discussed here are included: the varied definitions of centralities according to diverse disciplinary viewpoints; a reflection about how formal and informal processes of urbanization impact the relations established between centralities and the organization of rural and urban areas; and, how the emergence of new centralities induce transformation in urban and rural areas. The seminar aims at critically examining from a multidisciplinary viewpoint the potential that societies, economies and spaces in rural areas maintain to become centralities. As urban concentration has steadily increased, in parallel to an increment in environmental problems, depopulation of rural areas and other issues, it becomes urgent to discuss rather urbanization is an inevitable outcome of human evolution as a species. Understanding the factors behind the spatial patterns of accumulation of energy, knowledge, power and resources, for a bet the functioning of centralities is fundamental to this debate.

List of Participants:
MURAKAMI Yusuke (Political Science, KU-CSEAS)
Andrea URUSHIMA (Urban Environmental Studies, KU-CSEAS)
HAMAGUCHI Nobuaki (Economic Geography, Kobe U-RIEB)
HAGIWARA Hachiro (Geography and Regional Development, Shikoku U-FMIS)
Roberta FONTAN (Urban Environmental Studies, KU-CSEAS)
SUMIDA Ikunori (Luso-Brazilian Studies, KUFS-DELB)
YAMAZAKI Keiichi (Urban Development and Housing, YNU-GSISS)

List of Participating Institutions:
KU-CSEAS (Kyoto University, Center for Southeast Asia and Area Studies)
KOBE U-RIEB (Kobe University, Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration)
SHIKOKU U-FMIS (Shikoku University, Faculty of Management and Information Science)
KUFS-DELB (Kyoto University of Foreign Studies, Departamento de Estudos Luso-Brasileiros)
YNU-GSISS (Yokohama National University, Graduate School of International Social Sciences)

Short Profile of Speakers:

Hamaguchi Nobuaki
Director and professor of Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University. He is also a faculty fellow and program director in regional economy program of Research Institute of Economy, Trade, and Industry. He was a Latin America specialist of Institute of Developing Economies in 1987-2003. He holds Ph.D. in Regional Science from University of Pennsylvania and BA in Luso-Brazilian Study from Osaka University of Foreign Studies. In recent years, his research has been focusing on spatial elements of economic development, encompassing industrial location, urbanization, rural economy, migration, and inequality both in Japan and international, especially Latin America.

Hagiwara Hachiro Full-professor at Shikoku University, Faculty of Management and Information Science. Born in Tokyo, he earned a Bachelor degree from Waseda University, in the Faculty of Pedagogy, with a major in geography and history. He also earned the Master degree and completed his doctoral course at Rissho University, in Geography. During the post-graduate research, he investigated water supply and drainage systems of Mexico City and Sao Paulo, as well as, Tokyo and Paris. His specialty is urban geography and regional studies of Latin America, and in Tokushima he organizes visits to rural areas with students in cooperation with the local government.

Roberta Fontan Architect and urbanist, with PhD in Environmental Science and master’s in Architecture and Urbanism, both at University of São Paulo (USP, financed with a scholarship from Ministry of Education CAPES Program). She has experience as a geoprocessing specialist at University of Campinas-UNICAMP, with a bachelor in architecture and urbanism from the Federal University of Pernambuco and a bachelor in Computer Science at the Catholic University of Pernambuco. She used to be, since 2009, a research assistant at the Metropolis Laboratory at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism at University of São Paulo (Lume/FAU/USP), and investigated about rural areas of Sao Paulo metropolitan and macro-metropolitan context. She is currently a short-term visiting assistant professor in the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at Kyoto University. Her actual research is concerned with the urban expansion and rural area transformation in Kyoto and Osaka metropolitan areas since the 1950s.