PANEL DISCUSSION (Zoom Event) WOMEN IN JAPANESE MEDIA: Views from the Front Lines

WOMEN IN JAPANESE MEDIA: Views from the Front Lines

Yoko Hani, Editor-in-chief, Fujin no Tomo
Hiroko Aihara, Freelance Journalist, formerly staff writer of Fukushima Minyu Shimbun
Magdalena Osumi, Staff Writer, The Japan Times
Grace Lee, Tokyo Correspondent, Feature Story News
Yoshiko Hayashi, Freelance journalist, co-founder of WiMN (Women in Media Network Japan)
Moderator: Ilgin Yorulmaz (FCCJ Secretary and Diversity Committee Co-chair; BBC World Turkish reporter)

18:00-19:00, Friday, January 8, 2021
(The panel and Q & A will be in English.)

Japan continues to rank low in the annual World Economic Forum gender gap index, coming 121st out of 153 nations, its lowest placement ever. Nowhere is the chronic male dominance more obvious than the Japanese media industry: According to Japan Media Culture Information Group (MIC )’s 2020 survey, women comprise less than 10 percent of management roles at Japanese media companies — print and broadcasting, included. Of the ten markets recently analyzed by the Reuters Institute, only Japan has no female top news editors, despite a steady increase in female journalists.

The Japanese media’s lack of diversity means that women-related issues often get minimal coverage. This, in turn, shapes how the news media is perceived by different sectors of the public. FCCJ believes that covering women’s issues is crucial in a fully democratic society that enjoys press freedom. In honor of the 75th anniversary of the Club’s founding this past October, we welcome the New Year with a discussion on the status of women in Japanese media with distinguished guests who work as front-line editors and journalists*.

Yoko Hani is Editor-in-chief of Fujin no Tomo, Japan’s oldest women’s monthly magazine, founded by her grandaunt and one of Japan’s first bona-fide female journalists, Motoko Hani. Yoko has worked as a reporter and editor for The Japan Times and was a Reuters Fellow at the Reuters Institute at Oxford University.

Hiroko Aihara is a freelance journalist who covered local news as a former staff writer of Fukushima Minyu Shimbun. She was a visiting research fellow at the Miller School of Medicine at Miami University, the University of the Philippines, and the Ateneo de Manila University, the Philippines. Hiroko contributes to Big Issue Japan, Nikkei Business Online, Shūkan Asahi, and Shūkan Kinyobi. Since 2013, she has published news through her own company, Japan Perspective News.

Magdalena Osumi, who is of Polish origin, is currently a reporter for The Japan Times. She has covered the Tokyo Metropolitan Governor’s office and is currently focused on Japan’s immigration policies during the coronavirus pandemic.

Grace Lee is a Korean-Canadian video journalist and Tokyo Correspondent for Feature Story News. She covers everything from the economy and politics to the postponed Tokyo Olympics. Her previous stints include reporting for FSN the 2019 Hong Kong Protests. She also worked as an Asia reporter for Reuters, and a local journalist for CTV Vancouver.

Yoshiko Hayashi is a freelance journalist and co-founder of the Women in Media Network (WiMN Japan) — a diversity and safety advocacy group that aims to eliminate discrimination and harassment of any kind in Japanese media.

*Panelist lineup may change subject to the coronavirus pandemic.

How to attend: 
This event will be held on Zoom. Please use the following link to access from 5:50 pm onwards:

Meeting ID: 828 4557 1855
Passcode: 448062

How to ask questions:

Members watching the event online can submit questions for the speakers in advance using this submission form (English)

FCCJ Diversity Committee