Dr. Julie GILSON

University of Birmingham
Birmingham, UK

Short CV

Julie Gilson obtained a PhD from the University of Sheffield and has been a member of the Department of Political Science and International Studies (Polsis) at the University of Birmingham since 2003. Julie has published work on East Asian regionalism, Asia-Europe inter-regional relations and Japanese foreign policy and her most recent book is on EU-Japan relations. Her focus now is on climate change and environmentalism in Asia and she is part of the Birmingham Plastics Network, an interdisciplinary team of more than 40 academics who are working together to contribute to a sustainable future of plastics.


Clingendael Institute (Netherlands Institute of International Relations)
The Hague, Netherlands

Short CV

Maaike Okano-Heijmans is a Senior Research Fellow at the Clingendael Institute for International Relations in The Hague. Joining the Institute in 2006, and coordinating the Asia-Pacific Research and Advice Network for the European Commission and the EU External Action Service between 2016 and 2020, she currently leads Clingendael’s projects on ‘Geopolitics, great powers and global governance’ for the Dutch Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense, within the PROGRESS framework. Furthermore, Maaike Okano-Heijmans is a board member of the European Japan Advanced Research Network (EJARN) and a member of CSCAP-EU (Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific), the track-two organisation promoting security dialogue in Asia.

Maaike Okano-Heijmans’ main research interests are connectivity, economic diplomacy and international relations in East Asia, EU-Asia relations, and consular affairs and diplomacy. Within East Asia, she particularly focuses on Japan and China. She is a visiting lecturer at the University of Leiden and has contributed to numerous articles at various institutions on her topics of expertise (The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, the Clingendael Spectator, International Journal of Diplomacy and Economy). Recently, she has been researching the effect of digital connectivity and major tech companies on geopolitics.

Maaike Okano-Heijmans obtained a PhD from the University of Antwerp, Belgium, and holds master’s degrees from the University of Amsterdam as well as Waseda University in Tokyo.

Dr. Werner PASCHA

Duisburg-Essen University
Duisburg, Germany

Short CV

Werner Pascha is Professor Emeritus of East Asian Economic Studies/Japan and Korea at the Mercator School of Management and the Institute of East Asian Studies (IN-EAST) of the University of Duisburg-Essen. He has studied economics at Freiburg University in Germany (doctoral degree in 1986, habilitation in 1991), the London School of Economics, and Nagoya University. Over the years, he has been invited to several other institutes and universities, including Kyoto University (Japan Foundation Fellowship), 1996), Waseda University (2003), Kobe University (2006) and Doshisha University (JSPS Fellowship, 2011).

Among other functions, he is the Vice-President of Japanese-German Centre Berlin (JDZB) and serves in the steering group of EastAsiaNet, the European Research School Network of Contemporary East Asian Studies. He has published widely on the political economy of institutional change in Japan and Korea, and international economic relations of the region.

Dr. Jens WRONA

Duisburg-Essen University
Duisburg, Germany

Short CV

Jens Wrona holds the chair for New Economic Geography and East Asia at the University of Duisburg-Essen, where he is affiliated with the Institut for East Asian Studies (IN-EAST) and the Mercator School of Managment (MSM). Moreover, Jens Wrona is a CESifo Research Network Member at the ifo Institut in München and an External Research Affiliate at the Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE). He received his PhD in Economics from the Eberhard Karls University Tübingen in 2014, where he previously studied Economics and Japanese Studies. From 2015 to 2019 Jens Wrona was an Assistant Professor for International Economics at the Düsseldorf Institut for Competition Economics (DICE) at the Heinrich-Heine-University (HHU) Düsseldorf.

Dr. YOSHINO Naoyuki

Keio University
Tokyo, Japan

Short CV

Naoyuki Yoshino is Professor Emeritus at Keio University (Tokyo, Japan), Visiting Professor at GRIPS as well as Director of the Japan Financial Services Agency’s (FSA) Financial Research Center (FSA Institute).

Between 2014 and 2020, he was Dean of the Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI). He obtained his PhD from Johns Hopkins University in 1979 (where his thesis supervisor was Sir Alan Walters (UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s Economic Adviser). Naoyuki Yoshino has been a Visiting Scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as well as at the Central Bank of Japan and has served as a Visiting Professor at numerous universities such as the Fondation Nationale des Sciences Politiques (France) and the University of New South Wales (Australia). He was an Assistant Professor at the State University of New York. He received Honorary Doctorates from the University of Gothenburg (Sweden) and Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg (Germany). He was conferred Fukuzawa award from Keio University for his contribution to research. His research interests include Monetary and Fiscal Policy and Energy Finance.

Naoyuki Yoshino was chairing Financial System Council under the Prime Minister and Foreign exchange council under the Finance Minister of Japan. He is currently chairing the Financial education council of the Central Bank of Japan and the Financial Services Agency of the Government of Japan.