College of LLL enters partnership with National Institute for Japanese Literature

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Karin Mackenzie, (808) 956-4051
Educ Spec, Languages, Linguistics & Literature, Office of Community Relations
Posted: Feb 22, 2017

Yuichiro Imanishi, Laura E. Lyons and Robert Huey at the signing ceremony.
Yuichiro Imanishi, Laura E. Lyons and Robert Huey at the signing ceremony.

A collaboration with the National Institute for Japanese Literature (NIJL), one of Japan’s premier research institutes, has been formed with the Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures (EALL) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. NIJL is Japan’s first inter-university research institute for the humanities, founded in 1972.

The collaboration became official on February 16, 2017, with the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement by NIJL Director Yuichiro Imanishi, LLL Dean Laura E. Lyons and EALL Chair Robert Huey.  This agreement facilitates the ways in which each organization can share its resources, expertise and talent.

One of the first fruits of this agreement is a collaboration that extends beyond the two signatory institutions.  NIJL and EALL faculty and students will partner with representatives of UH Mānoa’s Department of Art and Art History, the UH Libraries and the Honolulu Museum of Art in a workshop that will examine rare 18th and 19th century Japanese books from the museum’s prized “Lane Collection,” with the ultimate goal of engaging in long-term research projects. Yasushi Misawa, the Consul General of Japan in Honolulu, graciously offered his residence to mark and celebrate the occasion.  

This common sense, yet innovative, approach to working with organizations that have overlapping goals has limitless potential.  For example, the Honolulu Museum of Art can increase its scholarly audience, while the academic side can gain access to unique materials found in private organizations like the museum.

Collegiality between NIJL and EALL existed before the partnership was formalized.  In fact, two PhD students were hosted at the institute in Tachikawa City while they conducted field research in Japan several years ago.  The Memorandum of Agreement will cement this relationship, and sharing access to the other’s facilities will further expand benefits.    

EALL has earned a stellar academic reputation for its practical and inventive language teaching methods, its vast array of offerings and its national flagship status in Chinese and Korean languages and the Language Roadmap. 

Even with these accolades, Dean Lyons considers this partnership a special one that adds a new dimension to the department, college and university. “We are honored to officially and professionally collaborate with the National Institute for Japanese Literature and our campus and community colleagues, so that the people we all serve will benefit," she said. "It is truly an exciting time to be a part of this inter-university effort.”

For more information, visit: