• Class Number 4592
  • Term Code 3250
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Topic Online
  • Mode of Delivery Online
    • Dr Shiro Armstrong
    • Dr Shiro Armstrong
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 08/08/2022
  • Class End Date 19/10/2022
  • Census Date 02/09/2022
  • Last Date to Enrol 15/08/2022
SELT Survey Results

Japan is the world’s third largest economy; it is modern, its people enjoy longevity and very high living standards. It is also safe, has a peace clause in its constitution and has played an important role in economic development in Asia. But Japan faces major challenges with an ageing and shrinking population, two decades of slow growth, rising inequality, a democracy dominated by one party, rapid and major change in its immediate regional neighbourhood and unresolved history and uneasy relations with its neighbours upon which it relies for economic prosperity. Japan is a unique country in a unique situation. 


This course tackles the big policy questions facing Japan - many of which can be applied to thinking about other countries. The course exposes students to the key policy debates in Japan and draws upon not only the strong academic expertise at ANU but also the expertise and experience of a range of top scholars and thinkers on Japan who will guest lecture and join the student debates and presentations. The course includes participation at the annual Japan Update conference and connects policy relevant research to teaching in an innovative way.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Become familiar with the brief history of Japan’s economic development and features of Japan’s economic institutions, political system and society
  2. Be able to identify and critically analyse a major reform priority for Japan
  3. Gain a deeper understanding and be able to critically analyse, discuss and debate Japan’s changing role in the world and relations with other states.
  4. Work in groups to discuss and debate domestic and foreign policy challenges through more than one disciplinary lens.
  5. Improve written and oral communication of complex policy ideas.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction 26 August Discussion about course and assessment
2 History and institutions 26 August History; Post war Japan; and Economic rise and lost decades Discussion: lessons from history and path dependence
3 Domestic challenges 27 August Contemporary economic challenges; Demographic challenges, the role of women and the labour market; Political system
4 Class-led discussion 27 August Domestic reforms: priorities, barriers and strategies
5 Foreign policy 2 September Economic diplomacy and Foreign Policy
6 Security Policy 3 September Security and Japan’s changing role in the world
7 Class-led discussion Japan’s changing role in the world
8 Japan Update 7 September Japan Update conference
9 Presentations 19 September Student presentations and wrap up
10 Class-led discussion 19 September Reflections and connecting the domestic-international and economics-security

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Presentation 10 % 19/09/2022 30/09/2022 5
Short paper 40 % 23/09/2022 30/09/2022 3, 4
Essay 50 % 22/10/2022 06/11/2022 1, 2

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is important in this course, especially in the student-led discussion sessions that bring together different topics in the course.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 19/09/2022
Return of Assessment: 30/09/2022
Learning Outcomes: 5


Presentation based on essay or short paper topic.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 40 %
Due Date: 23/09/2022
Return of Assessment: 30/09/2022
Learning Outcomes: 3, 4

Short paper

1,000 words on an aspect of Japan’s changing place in the world.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 50 %
Due Date: 22/10/2022
Return of Assessment: 06/11/2022
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2


4,000 words identifying and arguing for the most important policy reform facing Japan whether it be economic, political, foreign policy or social.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information. In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service — including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy. If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes. Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).
Dr Shiro Armstrong
02 6125 6410

Research Interests

Dr Shiro Armstrong

By Appointment
Dr Shiro Armstrong

Research Interests

Dr Shiro Armstrong

By Appointment

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