Comprehensive series of articles on themes too broad or complex to be addressed in a single post.

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Barrier-Free Design in JapanJapan Glances

Transportation hubs such as airports and train stations as well as public facilities are being fitted with wheelchair-accessible restrooms, tactile flooring, and other design features to increase their accessibility. Such efforts to make Japan increasingly barrier free have gained momentum ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games and include installing level landings to improve access to sidewalks and equipping public facilities with elevators and ramps.

Japan’s Olympics: 2016 Medalists and Historic Medal TotalsJapan Data

Japanese athletes won a record 41 medals at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This article lists all the medal winners as well as Japan’s medal totals for past Summer Olympics.

The Science Behind Frixion Erasable PensThe Frontiers of Science

Pilot’s Frixion series of groundbreaking erasable-ink pens became international bestsellers following their launch in 2006. Frixion products have now sold a total of 1.5 billion units worldwide.

Hansen’s Disease in Japan: The Lingering Legacy of DiscriminationPromoting Inclusion of People with Hansen’s Disease

Twenty years have passed since the repeal of the law mandating isolation of Hansen’s Disease (leprosy) patients in Japan. The government has recognized the injustice of the isolation policy and has moved to compensate the victims, but many former patients and family members still sense discrimination and prejudice.

Japan at the Forefront of Super-Aging SocietiesAging in Japan and Across Asia

This article, the first in a series by the Sasakawa Peace Foundation’s Issues and Implications of Aging Asian Population Project, looks at the current state of aging in Japan and its efforts, as an “advanced” nation in this field, to tackle the issue.

GeishaJapan Glances

Geisha have been a Japanese icon around the world for over a century. Skilled in traditional arts, the female entertainers continue to perform in Kyoto, Tokyo, and other regional centers.

Ramadan in Japan: A Day in the Life of a Muslim BusinessmanIslam in Japan

Ramadan this year fell during the summer, when the days are longest. For Muslims in Japan, this meant fasting for more than 16 hours a day, a special challenge in Japan's corporate culture. In this close-up of a day in the life of a Muslim businessman, we see how he and his employer are meeting such challenges.

Abe Reshuffles Cabinet After House of Councillors Election (August 2016)Japan Data

On August 3, 2016, Prime Minister Abe made his second reshuffle since his reelection in December 2014. New faces include Inada Tomomi as minister of defense, while potential leadership rival Ishiba Shigeru was removed from the cabinet.

Timeline for July 2016Japan Timeline

The House of Councillors election is held, Emperor Akihito reportedly expresses a wish to abdicate, and cultural phenomenon Pokémon Go is launched in Japan. These are the leading news stories of July 2016.

Traditional Japanese HousesJapan Glances

The influence of Western-style housing has been significant in Japan, but many traditional elements remain.

Tokyo Art Museum Recognized in UNESCO List: An Overview of World Heritage Sites in JapanJapan Data

The National Museum of Western Art in Tokyo has been recognized by UNESCO as the country’s latest World Heritage site, gaining the designation as part of an international collection of architectural works by Le Corbusier. It is the twentieth place in Japan to be added to the prestigious list.

Kimono and “Yukata”Japan Glances

Traditional Japanese kimono span a wide variety of styles and types, ranging from formal attire for weddings and other ceremonies to casual summer yukata worn at festivals and as nightwear. While the time and technique required to properly don kimono largely consign them to special occasions, the mystique of Japan’s traditional wear continues to assure its popular appeal.

Landslide Victory for LDP in 2016 Upper House ElectionJapan Data

The ruling coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and Kōmeitō won comfortably in the House of Councillors election on July 10, 2016. The LDP nonetheless ended one seat short of its first simple majority in 27 years.

“Washi” (Japanese Paper)Japan Glances

Washi, or handmade Japanese paper, is still produced in every part of Japan. In 2014, UNESCO inscribed three of the most important washi traditions in its list of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity.

Iriya Morning Glory Festival: Summer Flowers in TokyoHappening in Japan

For three days in July, visitors gather at a north Tokyo temple to enjoy a wide variety of morning glories.

“Hanko” and “Inkan”: Japanese Stamps and Personal SealsJapan Glances

Small, circular or square seals dipped in red ink are used instead of a signature on many documents in Japan, ranging from simple delivery slips to official forms such as bank applications and marriage registrations.

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