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Meiji University Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer (RIHGAT)

Project Summary

For four years from 2013 to 2016, our research project entitled “Historical Studies of Disarmament and Arms Transfer in the Global Perspective” had been supported as Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) by Japanese Ministry of Education. In 2015, our research project was selected as an international and domestic research center on the history of the disarmament and arms transfer by Private Universities Foundation for the Development of Fundamental Research Strategies. In 2018, our project was promoted to one of the Special Institute for Research Promotion.

Through comprehensive historical studies, our research institute aims to clarify the essential structure of the modern world that prevents disarmament and arms control.
This Institute puts forward the following three research themes:

Theme 1: ‘Studies on the global influence of Arms Transfer’, focuses on the causes of the difficulty of disarmament and arms control and the repeated failures of these efforts. A perspective that grasps the ‘global influence of arms transfer’ as something dynamic is indispensable.
Theme 2:‘Studies on the developments of Disarmament and Arms Control’, poses the issue of demonstrating, in a comprehensive and world-historical structure, the main causes for the difficulties of disarmament.
Theme 3:‘International Comparison of the Industrial-Military Research Complexes (MIRC) and the Model of Industrialization with an overemphasis on the Military’, focuses on the situation of arms transfers and technology transfers that was progressed through military and technical assistance since the Cold War and on the new international tendencies that resulted from this situation. The simultaneous realization of military independence, industrialization and the cultivation of a high level of human resources has been said an important theme in considering the development of Asian countries today.

In order to disseminate our research results widely, we issue the Research Institute’s bulletin titled The Journal of Research Institute for The History of Global Arms Transfer (twice a year).
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Director’s Message

Meiji University Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer was founded in June 2015 with research support from Meiji University and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in Japan and selected in August 2018 as the Special Institute for Research Promotion by Meiji University.

Our Research Institute aims to promote advanced research and establish the worldwide research base on the disarmament and arms control in the modern and contemporary world through comprehensive historical research. The issues of disarmament and arms control today looks extremely complicated. This is the reason we believe that it is important to go back into history and thus reveal the essential structure of disarmament and arms control from the comprehensive point of view, including economic history, history of international affairs, imperial history, and military history. It is also important to emphasize an approach to research that combines historical research with discussions about today’s policy issues. Through initiatives based on its contemporary awareness of issues, it will promote efforts to make research in this area more interdisciplinary and international, a task that was not achieved by the previous closed research organizations.

Through the various activities listed below, the Research Institute is disseminating research results in Japan and abroad. These initiatives will hopefully help in the fostering of young researchers and the establishment of global research network.
(1) Hosting a Forum on the History of the Armament Industry and Arms Transfer organized by the Political Economy & Economic History Society
(2) Holding biannual open symposium organized by the Research Institute 
(3) Biannual issuance of the Research Institute’s bulletin titled “The Journal of Research Institute for The History of Global Arms Transfer”.
(4) Hosting international seminars and workshops by inviting overseas researchers
(5) Publication of the Research Institute’s series of research books.
(6) Offering courses for all undergraduate schools in omnibus style
(7) Multi-faceted public relations by using the Research Institute’s website and the University’s public relations organ.
Katsuhiko Yokoi
Director, Meiji University Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer
Professor of Economic History,
School of Commerce, Meiji University