Alison Szalwinski
Vice President of Research
[email protected]

Strategic Assistance

Disaster Relief and Asia-Pacific Stability

As Asia emerges as the global economic engine of the 21st century, large scale disasters in this vital region will carry increasingly profound consequences. Sudden disasters resulting in mass casualties, the widespread destruction of property and essential infrastructure, and the prolonged displacement of large populations will severely test existing national and international institutions and could present a broader threat to regional stability. Faced with this challenge, Japan and the United States—owing to their unique capabilities and shared interests within the region— should seek to enhance bilateral cooperation and coordination on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) in Asia.

This project—a collaborative initiative between The National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR) and the Japan Center for International Exchange (JCIE)—seeks to develop a more coordinated, strategic bilateral approach to HA/DR operations in Asia, a concept we have termed Strategic Assistance. Over its two-year lifespan, the project will identify the policies, capabilities, and strategies necessary for enhancing U.S.-Japan cooperation and coordination on HA/DR in the Asia-Pacific.

Project activities and deliverables include:

  • Workshops in the United States, Indonesia, and Japan with specialists from across the region
  • Commissioned analyses and conference reports by U.S. and Japanese specialists on current and future levels of demand for HA/DR in the Asia-Pacific and the capabilities and resources employed by the United States and Japan in response to major disaster incidents
  • Commissioned analyses by specialists from the Asia-Pacific representing regional perspectives
  • A final report authored by Admiral Thomas B. Fargo, USN (Ret.); Lt. Gen. Noboru Yamaguchi, JGSDF (Ret.); Dr. Ryo Sahashi; and Mr. Abraham M. Denmark summarizing the project’s findings and recommending policy and strategy changes for Japan and the United States in order to move toward operationalizing the Strategic Assistance concept
  • Briefings for Japanese and U.S. government and military officials

Japan Research Team

Senior Advisor
Lt. Gen. Noboru Yamaguchi, GSDF (Ret.), National Defense Academy of Japan

Principal Investigator
Ryo Sahashi, Japan Center for International Exchange

Project Associate
Kei Koga, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

U.S. Research Team

Senior Advisor
Admiral Thomas B. Fargo, USN (Ret.), The National Bureau of Asian Research

Project Sponsors

Project Reports