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Simon Schwenke

Institutional Change of Civilian Control in Japanese Forces

Simon Schwenke is a Phd candidate with Prof. Verena Blechinger at the Graduate School of East Asian Studies (GEAS) of Freie Universität Berlin. His specializes in Japan’s security and defense policy and focuses on civil-military relations in his thesis. Simon wants to know how the changing security environment affects Japan’s unique construct of civilian control of the military. For the second year in the doctoral program, he plans for an extended research stay in Tokyo to conduct interviews and gather empirics in order to confirm his broad hypothesis that the military agency’s influence on policy output has changed.

Simon holds a Magister Artium (M.A.) in Japanese Studies from Freie Universität Berlin. He also studied at Keio University in Japan and, after graduating, was a research fellow at the Institute for Japanese Studies at Freie Universität. He had been a doctoral researcher at the Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien (German Institute for Japanese Studies), located in Tokyo. Simon joined GEAS in October 2014.


Schwenke, Simon 2016. "Zwischen Unabhängigkeit und Eigenständigkeit. Japans Sicherheitspolitik", in: WeltTrends 121

Schwenke, Simon (2015): State Intelligence in Japan, in: Blancke, Stephan (Ed), East Asian Intelligence and Organised Crime, Berlin

Media Appearences:
04-28-2012 (99). Neue Züricher Zeitung (NZZ): Strategische Allianz bleibt für Japan und die USA wichtig, p. 7

09-18-2012 (217). Neue Züricher Zeitung (NZZ): US-Raketenabwehr in Japan wird ausgebaut, frontpage, p. 6, 27, and 21

Dec 2012/ Jan 2013. Y- Magazin der Bundeswehr: Ostasien – Streit um Mini-Inseln, p. 18-22

01-26-2013 (21). Neue Züricher Zeitung (NZZ): Sollen Japans Soldaten im Ausland Landsleute retten?, p. 5

Conferences and presentations:
Akademie für politische Bildung Tutzing, „Die Auslandseinsätze der japanischen Selbstverteidigungsstreitkräfte“ (The foreign dispatches of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces), 9th to 12th September 2010 in Tutzing

Phd Workshop at the Institute for Social Sciences of the University of Tokyo (directed by John Campbell), “The institutional change of the Japanese SDF”, 27th September 2012

Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien (DIJ), “Civil-Military Relations in Japan – From Ignorance to Embrace?“, DIJ Social Science Study Group, 19th December 2012