Japan’s policies on educational cooperation have gone through various developments and transitions after the 1990s. Such policy movements and trends in the education sector of Japan’s international cooperation are observed in Japan’s International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Ministry of Education (MEXT) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA). Prior to 1990, its priorities were placed on higher and vocational education for several reasons, such as the shared belief among Japanese professionals in the education area that because basic education is such an essential foundation for a nation’s development, it is not appropriate for foreign assistance to engage in. Furthermore, Japan’s history before and during World War II of forcing Japanese language education in its occupied territories associated these mistakes with foreign assistance in primary and secondary education. However, the Jomtien Conference held in 1990 became a timely conference for the country’s overall shift to join the world’s trends for assistance in basic education. This chapter analytically reviews policy documents of JICA, MEXT and MoFA to further emphasize the importance of utilizing the “integrated approach”, which includes independent approaches but also indispensable in one another. This particular approach includes elements of human rights, sustainable development and world peace in educational cooperation which also serves as important pillars of the concept of “human security”, highly advocated by Japan. The element of “peace” is very clearly incorporated in the most recently published policy papers of the government of Japan in comparison to previous policy proposals to promote stronger collaboration with international organizations and post-conflict nation-building. Moreover, there is reinforced commitment by the government of Japan to address world peace in linkage with international discourses and literature, using its comparative advantage as peace-loving and non-Western nation, experiencing a unique path of development. Lastly, this chapter also looks in depth, capturing concrete implications for a post-2015 world from the context of Japan’s education cooperation policies by highlighting issues on peace, self-help efforts and quality and equity of education.
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