Social Innovation and New Solutions to Youth Unemployment: UK & Japan’s Emerging Youth Policy

12 March 2013

6:00 – 7:30pm, followed by a drinks reception to 8:00pm

13-14 Cornwall Terrace (Outer Circle), London, NW14QP

In the UK, young people with low or no qualifications make up 39% of all young people unemployed and not in education, and 47% of those inactive and outside learning, despite only accounting for a quarter of the youth population. Tony Wilson, Policy Director of Inclusion, which delivers research and new approaches to policy that promote social inclusion in the labour market, will talk about the UK’s policy of intervention and provision of training to improve the employability of  British youth. His recent publications include the BIS research paper (Number 101) Youth Unemployment: Review of Training for Young People with Low Qualifications (Dept. for Business Innovation and Skills, February 2013).

From the 1960s onwards, Japan’s rapid economic growth generated internationally low levels of youth unemployment. This changed in the 1990s however, and by the 2000s, youth unemployment was recognised as a serious concern. Japan’s Emerging Youth Policy (Routledge, 2013) is based on extensive fieldwork that draws on both sociological and policy science approaches, and is the first book to investigate in detail how the state, experts, the media, and youth workers have reacted to the rise of youth joblessness in Japan. The book argues that entrepreneurial youth support leaders in Japan can provide sustainable, attractive solutions to the dilemmas that virtually all post-industrial nations currently face but have not yet seriously addressed. Dr Tuukka Toivonen, the author of the book, will discuss Japan’s emerging youth policy and attempt to bring evidence from Japan into a dialogue with the realities in other advanced nations, such as the UK.

Dr Tuukka Toivonen

Dr Tuukka Toivonen is Junior Research Fellow at Green Templeton College, University of Oxford, and is a Visiting Research Fellow at the Global Communications Centre (GLOCOM), the International University of Japan, Tokyo. He holds a DPhil in Social Policy from the University of Oxford, and is a graduate of Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University in Japan. He has held visiting positions at the universities of Kobe, Tokyo, Kyoto and Keio. He is a sociologist by training and has published several articles in world-class journals that comparatively analyse policy-making processes, youth problems and social innovations. He is also the co-editor of A Sociology of Japanese Youth: From Returnees to NEETs (Routledge, 2012). Currently, he is carrying out fieldwork on the evolution of social entrepreneurship and related innovation communities in Japan. Alongside his purely academic work, he also engages in social innovation activities himself as the founder and representative of Kansai RISE, which promotes young people’s creative involvement in public improvement and policy-making at regional level.

Tony Wilson

Tony Wilson joined Inclusion as Director in October 2011. He has more than ten years’ experience of policy and research, project management and delivery across a range of roles in HM Treasury, the Department for Work and Pensions and Jobcentre Plus. Since joining Inclusion, Tony has led on a range of projects including a feasibility study on developing a new employment programme in Northern Ireland, assessing approaches to tackling youth unemployment, the fragmentation of services for young people, and evaluations of programmes to increase employment among inactive groups. Most recently, Tony led on employment policy and delivery at HM Treasury: advising on labour market trends, policy responses to the downturn, delivery of welfare-to-work programmes and benefit reform. Prior to this he was responsible for the design and delivery of a number of Department for Work and Pensions employment projects. These included overseeing the development and introduction of the Future Jobs Fund, which created over 105,000 temporary jobs for long-term unemployed people. He was an expert policy adviser to David Freud on his independent review of welfare-to-work, published in 2007.

Organised by The Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation


Call Girls part 1

I recently read a book on Thai prostitutes and found their stories and views on their job very interesting.

Bee, 31 years old.

‘I was 25 years old. I was not a virgin. I was not stupid. In Thailand I made 8,000 baht a month working in a shopping mall. As a call girl (in England) I could make 8,000 baht a day. What would you do?’

It makes me wonder what people would do if they could get in a day what they make in a month. Would you work as prostitute? I doubt I would but I suppose in certain cases it could be the best option.


Women Work in Wood (WoWoWo)

Women Work – in Wood is a touring celebration and showcase of leading female contemporary furniture designers and makers, working in wood, and will include work from London-based Tomoko Azumi, and Denmark-based Akiko Kuwahata, as well as various other international, established and emerging designer makers, who  have all responded to a design brief to develop and encourage innovative design in furniture using sustainable processes and materials.

The design development has in each case been documented to illuminate the decisions regarding techniques and process.  These narratives, as well as the more personal deliberations to do with career paths, will form part of the exhibition showing the richness of skill and approach and add to the debate about design, responsibility, opportunity, expectation and so forth.

The number of women furniture makers is on a steady increase in Europe and particularly the UK. This exhibition is the first dedicated showcase of contemporary work by woman designer makers.

24 September 2011 – 30 October 2011

Walford Mill Crafts, Dorset

For more information, please click here.

Work and Pensions in the UK and Japan

After the posts dedicated to the earthquake I think it is time to start, again, to highlight interesting events taking place across London. The next event is held at the DAIWA Anglo-Japanese Foundation:

Work and Pension in the UK and Japan

This third seminar in the 2011 series, Uncertain Futures: The Individual, Society and the State in the UK and Japan, will consider issues relating to employment, retirement and pension reform. Fiscal restraints and demographics are contributing to ongoing policy discussions on working life and pension provision in both countries. Our speakers are well placed to set out changing aspects of government policy and to compare historical legacies and the transformation of welfare regimes. Political shifts in the UK and Japan have brought new ideas to bear on these difficult issues. How current governments are responding to social needs and economic circumstances will form the basis of the seminar discussion.

7 April 2011

6:00 – 7:45pm, followed by a drinks reception to 8:45pm

Daiwa Foundation Japan House

Organised by the Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation

Booking Form




No time

Scusate per la mancanza di nuovi post ma e’ un periodo nel quale il lavoro mi tiene molto occupato e la stanchezza mi impedisce di scrivere. Spero da domani di essere in grado di dedicare piu’ tempo a questo Blog.

I apologise for the lack of new ideas and new posts but I’m very busy at work and in the evening often to tired to think and write. I hope that things get better from tomorrow so I’ll dedicate more time to this Blog.


Settimana veramente molto impegnativa sul fronte lavoro, specialmente questa mattina. Il fatto che sono presissimo al lavoro mi sta rallentando in tutte le altre cose che avevo programmato. Lo studio del giapponese, per esempio, ne risente in maniera evidente ed ormai da qualche giorno e’ passato alle zero ore, o meglio, minuti di studio. L’altra cosa che stavo cercando di sistemare era la ricerca della ragazza Giapponese o Coreana per la stanza che voglio affittare (vedi post precedente), ed anche per questo sono andato abbastanza lentamente in particolare con gli annunci sui vari siti specializzati. Per fortuna, pero’, questa mattina ho ricevuto una telefonata di una ragazza Giapponese che vorrebbe venire a vivere qui da me. Ci siamo messi d’accordo per incontrarci Sabato pomeriggio cosi’ lei puo’ vedere la stanza e l’appartamento e nel caso fosse ancora interessata, se ritengo sia la persona giusta, sistemarsi qui da me. Speriamo bene, sarebbe un problema in meno da sistemare.

Domani spero di avere abbastanza tempo per fare qualche foto durante i festeggiamenti del capodanno Cinese cosi’, se tutto va bene, alla sera pubblichero’ le immagini. A presto.