Conference begins

American and Japanese professors, business leaders and foreign diplomats are meeting in Hanover this week to discuss the leadership role of the United States and Japan in the 21st Century.

The 35 participants, including College Trustee Stephen Bosworth, the president of the U.S.-Japan Foundation, and Mikio Kato, executive director of the International House of Japan, the co-sponsors of the conference, are discussing the “United States and Japan on the eve of the 21st Century.”

“The idea is to further understanding of what it takes to be joint leaders in the world,” said History Professor Stephen Ericson, co-director of the conference with Government Professor Michael Mastanduno.

Ericson said he and Mastanduno tried to recruit a “cross section” of business leaders, academics, journalists and foreign service officers that were in “mid-career” and are “the next generation of leaders.”

According to Demko, who together with Dickey Center Director Martin Sherwin convened the conference, this week’s conference deals with the linkage of domestic, political, social and economic issues to international leadership.

A companion conference, to be held in Japan next spring, will address the U.S.-Japan leadership in the context of international relations.

The Dartmouth/Japan Conference is a renewal of a series of the Dartmouth-International House Conferences initiated by former College president John Sloan Dickey in the 1960s.

College President James Freedman decided to renew the conferences after visiting the International House in Japan, the co-sponsor of the earlier conferences.

The conferences featured meetings and discussions between leaders of countries such as the United States, Japan and the Soviet Union to foster international cooperation.

Demko said the reconvening of the conferences shows the College’s commitment to Dickey’s wish that Dartmouth play a role in international affairs.

“Dartmouth must continually assert its role in international, intellectual affairs,” Demko said.

Freedman welcomed the participants at the opening banquets on Sunday.

“We think it’s a roaring success,” Rockefeller Center Director George Demko said yesterday after the first day of the conference.

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