Message from Editor in Chief


As we all know, cultural experiences enrich our life. Our "Wochi Kochi
Magazine" offers stories and topics, on cross-cultural exchanges
between Japan and other countries. We would like to share our
surprises and smiles when we get to know good stories on culture.

We hope you enjoy reading our e-magazine and we always welcome your feedbacks.


Editors of Wochi Kochi Magazine


What's Wochi Kochi Magazine?

It is a web magazine for disseminating information about Japanese culture.

This website is designed to transmit information about Japanese culture to the rest of the world. It has replaced “International Exchanges” (1974-2004) and “Wochikochi (Far and Near) (2004-2009) (*ceased publication with the December, 2009, issue), the only magazines in the country on international cultural exchanges published by the Japan Foundation. The name “wochikochi” is a demonstrative pronoun that denotes places and times and expresses the desires to spread the Japanese language and culture overseas, deepen mutual understanding with other countries, and play a role as a cultural bridge that spans not only across countries but also among peoples. It derives its meaning from a word in the ancient Japanese “Yamato” language for “here and there” or “the future and the present.” Inheriting the spirit of its predecessors, Wochikochi Magazine carries interviews, contributed articles and serialized stories written by experts in a variety of professional and academic fields on a special topic each month.

“Wochikochi Search” is a database that link stories published in the past and those that will come in the future.

You can search articles in all the 32 issues of Wochikochi (Far and Near) as well as those on Wochikochi Magazine by keywords, geographical regions or the names of authors. The database will grow each day as new stories are added and the number of related stories increases through a system that links old and new stories together.

Wochikochi Magazine Contents

Top Story:This is an article on a special topic published each month. It carries an interview with a top runner in one of various fields or a dialog with a key person who leads an international project.

Contributed Article: This article, which digs deeper into the topic of the month, is written by a scholar or a researcher in and outside Japan on his or her thoughts on the topic.

Relay Essay: How does the rest of the world look at Japan? Scholars who are studying Japan overseas provide their insights into this country.

Serialized Essay: Artists in the limelight, up-and-coming young people – these and others who are capturing attention on the world stage report on the latest in their activity in this essay.

Feature Story – Somewhere in the world today…
Every day, somebody, somewhere on the planet, is acting as a bridge between Japan and the world. We bring you stories direct from artists and researchers working on location around the globe, who share their various experiences, ranging from sketches of street life, to profiles of people encountered on the job.

Behind the Scene – Stories from backstage
From shamisen concerts to international social research, the Japan Foundation’s activities span a wide range. We bring you a glimpse of the action backstage, the joys and pains that go into making these events happen, featuring stories that only staff members can tell, of episodes that could only happen in that particular corner of the world.

Website Policy

  1. 1. The copyrights (or intellectual properties) of all the information on this site (texts, graphics, images, others), unless otherwise specified, belong to the Japan Foundation.
  2. 2. The information on this site cannot be reprinted or reproduced, wholly or partially, except for personal use.
  3. 3. The information on this site may be used for educational and other purposes mainly, as explicitly permitted by law.
    *Credit examples
    Japanese -- 「提供:国際交流基金」、「出典: 国際交流基金」
    English -- 「Copyright Japan Foundation」/「Source Japan Foundation」
  4. 4. The use of images on this site that involve specific individual people or organizations requires permission of said people or organizations to ensure the protection of their rights. To find how to obtain permission, please visit
  5. 5. The information on this site cannot be used for advertizing, marketing and other commercial purposes.
  1. 1. The Japan Foundation is paying the closest attention to the security of its website, but this does not always guarantee the elimination of all the errors of contents, or errors of contents due to causes beyond the control of the Japan Foundation such as purposeful falsifications by third parties. The Japan Foundation shall not be held responsible for any damages that may result from the use of this site or the information on this site.
  2. 2. This site, for the convenience of its users, includes contents, links and other information by third-parties beyond the responsibility of the Japan Foundation, as well as translations of them made by the Japan Foundation itself. The information on this site or the URL may be changed or removed without prior notice.
  3. 3. The Japan Foundation is doing all it can to ensure the accuracy of the information on its site, but it is in no way held responsible for any action or actions that stem from the use of the site.
  4. 4. Due to the technical restrictions particular to the electronic media, letter types and other forms may differ from those in paper publications. (Examples: computer model-specific letters, people’s names)
  5. 5. The input of information onto this site may temporarily be suspended due to system trouble or maintenance.

Privacy Policy

Basic Stance on Privacy

The Japan Foundation gathers information on the users of this site as part of its services (providing information on the website, receiving various opinions, others). The information thus gathered will be used appropriately, as follows:

(1) Scope and purpose for the use of information
  1. a. This site gathers information on the names of Internet domains, IP addresses, and others. With the use of a cookie, it also automatically collects information on user visits to this site. Such information will be used to provide the services on this site and to manage Japan Foundation projects smoothly.
  2. b. When the Japan Foundation seeks views and opinions on this site or conduct surveys, it may ask for the names of respondents or their schools as well as their professions, telephone numbers and other information as necessary. Such information will be used as reference in managing Japan Foundation projects.
(2) Limits on use and release of information

The Japan Foundation does not release to third parties any information it has gathered from users that can identify such individual users, with the following three exceptions:

  • ・When requests are made based on legal grounds
  • ・When permission specifically for the release of information to a third party is obtained in advance from the provider of such information.
  • ・When the Japan Foundation asks businesses to process the information it has gathered, as necessitated by such businesses to perform their tasks.

Establishment of related links

There are basically no restrictions to the establishment of related links. The Japan Foundation is in no way responsible, however, in case trouble occurs on such links.

  • ・ Please use the top page ( as a rule when creating URLs for links. There is a strong possibility that URLs on other pages may be altered. In such cases, connections to links will be lost.
  • ・ The Japan Foundation firmly refuses the establishment of links in ways that make it difficult to identify the contents of Wochikochi Magazine as such, as in cases where its home page is used in other web locations.
  • ・ The Japan Foundation firmly refuses action or actions that constitute the violation of intellectual properties such as copyrights, commercial rights, privacy, portrait rights and other rights.
  • ・ The Japan Foundation firmly refuses unauthorized use or transfer of the contents of the magazine.
  • ・ Please contact the Japan Foundation in advance through if you want to use the contents of the magazine, not for links but for publications or such memory media as CD-ROMs.


You can browse through Wochikochi Magazine in the JFIC Library located in the head office of the Japan Foundation. You can also purchase the magazine at the JFIC Shop or at bookstores in Kansai International Airport in Osaka. In addition, the magazine is available through major on-line stores like Shipping costs vary from bookstore to bookstore. Some of them provide a service that makes access to the magazine possible.

Library information

The JFIC Library stores materials regarding Japan Foundation projects, archival materials on international cultural exchanges and cultural policies as well as archival and photographical documents on Japan in foreign languages. Located within the library is also a JFIC Shop that sells Japan Foundation goods and publications.

Wochikochi Search FAQs

Q1 What are the “recommended keywords”?

With these keywords, you can locate articles recommended by the managing editor. The keywords that provide access to the names of popular authors, for instance, or articles about events in progress are introduced. Among these are also keywords that are not included on the “Search by region x keyword” list.

Q2 I want to find articles on “dance” in “Indonesia.”

With the “Wochikochi search,” you can look for articles with a combination of regions and keywords.

Example: Open “Asian region” on the column of “Search by region” and check “Indonesia.”

Open “Cultural relations” on the “Search by Keyword” column and check “Dance.”

Click on “Search by this region x keyword” at the bottom.

*You can also do a search with “Indonesia” or “Dance” alone.

Q3 I cannot find the region I want to look up on the list

In cases of wide areas that cover more than one country (Example: Southeast Asia), please put a check on the appropriate region.
If you want to do a search with the name of a city (Example: New York), input the name in “Free word search” or look up articles about the country in which the city is located (Example: US). If you want to do a search for a specific region (Example: EU, Mekong, Arab states), please try “Free word search.”

Q4 Nothing turns up in “Free word search.”

The “Free word search” is a function for searching the registered keywords. Therefore, you cannot get access to articles for which keywords do not exist.
Keyword-registered articles are those on the “Search by region x keyword” column (Example: France, Art, Natural environment), the names of authors and people (Example: Haruki Murakami), and certain cities and areas (Example: New York, Mekong).

<Searching people’s names>
A search is possible with a family name or a given name alone. For English names, please type them in in katakana. (Example: オリガ・スラブニコワ). If a search fails, please check the kanji letter type you have used to make sure it is correct or confirm if you have used the real name or pen name, if you have used the correct kanji characters, or if spacing is correct.

<Names of regions not on the regions list>
The names of some cities are registered (Example: New York, Paris), though there are not many. Do a search with commonly used katakana names. If no articles are found, try to search with the name of the country you are interested in.

<Keyword search>
The registered keywords are shown on the “Search by region x keyword” list. If a “Free word search” does not work, please try this list.

This “Free word search” does not provide access to entire articles, but it searches the keywords registered for each of the articles. There may be cases in which the titles of exhibitions or symposiums are not registered.

If you are looking for information about specific Japan Foundation projects, and not Wochikochi articles, please use the search function on the Japan Foundation Website.

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