The United States-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON) congratulates President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on their successful summit meeting on April 24, 2014, welcomes their initiatives to further promote and expand bilateral exchanges and dialogues, and pledges its strongest support to work toward the goal of doubling two-way student exchange by 2020.

The bedrock of the U.S.-Japan Alliance – the cornerstone of peace, prosperity, security, and stability in the Asia-Pacific region – is the close bond between our people. In 2012, recognizing the need to deepen mutual understanding between Japanese and American youth, CULCON established an Education Task Force to make recommendations to leaders in both nations on ways to revitalize and invigorate U.S.-Japan educational exchanges. The Education Task Force’s Report, issued in June 2013, set the goal of doubling two-way student exchange by the year 2020 and recommended concrete measures to be taken by Japan, the United States to achieve this goal. The Education Task Force continues to work with stakeholders in both countries including government, private sector and academia to achieve this important objective.

CULCON is a public/private advisory panel established by the Joint Statement between President John F. Kennedy and Prime Minister Hayato Ikeda in 1961. The Panel serves to deepen and strengthen the vital cultural and educational foundations of the U.S.-Japan relationship. For more than fifty years, CULCON has been working to ensure that the best new ideas for cultural, educational, and intellectual activity and exchange are implemented as operational programs. Building on past successes, CULCON will continue to explore innovative ways to reduce barriers and broker partnerships to further these goals.

Minoru Makihara                 Harry Hill
Japan CULCON Chair         U.S. CULCON Chair

April 25, 2014