Assistant Professor of Government



Office: HARRIS 210


Dr.  Hasunuma is an Assistant Professor of Government at Franklin and Marshall College and earned her Ph.D. at the University of California, Los Angeles. She has published on the subject of Japan's political institutions, decentralization reforms, and gender politics--including her most recent publication: "Gender Gaiatsu: An Institutional Perspective on Womenomics" for the US-Japan Women's Journal (Oct/Nov 2015). Her book chapter (for the edited volume, The Private and the Public: Women and Politics in Contemporary Japan)  and an article on women in civil society in Japan are currently under review, and another article on womenomics is forthcoming with Asie.Visions (spring, 2017).

Dr. Hasunuma is part of the 2012-2014 cohort of the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation's U.S.-Japan Network for the Future Fellows program, and received fellowships from the Social Science Research Council, the Sasakawa Foundation, and the Aratani Foundation. She has been an invited speaker at Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, Johns Hopkins University, Haverford College, the University of Zurich, and the World Affairs Council; and served as discussant at workshops on Japanese politics at Columbia University, the US-Japan Research Institute, and the Sasakawa Peace Foundation.  She has been interviewed on CBS Philadelphia, WBEZ Chicago (NPR),  Channel News Asia, and was quoted in The Japan Times. She has also published an Op-Ed on gender equality in the The Asahi Shimbun.  Here is her latest commentary for World Politics Review:



  • Ph.D. 2010, University of California, Los Angeles. 
  • B.A. 1997, University of California, Los Angeles, magna cum laude.



East Asia,  decentralization, gender equality in Japan and South Korea, and Japan-South Korea relations.

Advanced Japanese and native Korean speaker.








Upcoming Presentations (2016-17)


  • Invited lecture, Johns Hopkins University, East Asian Studies Speaker Series, "Womenomics and Women's Equality in Japan."  (April 4, 2017 from 12 to 1:30pm)
  • Invited lecture, University of Zurich,  (December 8, 2016, noon to 2pm) on my research on women and civil society in Japan and South Korea
  • Invited to speak about Womenomics on a panel , "Harnessing the Global Power of Women" for the 13th Annual Lockheed Martin Women's Impact Network Leadership Forum, 2016 at the Center for Global Excellence in Bethesda, MD.  On a panel with Ambassador Catherine Russell, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, U.S. Department of State; Ambassador Marcelle Wahba, President of The Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington; and Her Excellency Kirsti Kauppi, the Ambassador of Finland to the United States on November 3, 2016, 10:30am.



  • American Political Science Association, Annual Meeting, August 31-September 3, 2017, San Francisco, CA. DIVISION 11: COMPARATIVE POLITICS. Roundtable: Gender Equality Policies in the Post-Millennium: Achievements and Setbacks.
  • American Political Science Association, Annual Meeting, August 31-September 3, 2017, San Francisco, CA. DIVISION 31: WOMEN & POLITICS RESEARCH. Panel: Conservative Parties and Women's Substantive Representation.


  • "How the Comfort Women Issue Became a Korean American Issue" with Mary McCarthy at the Association for Asian Studies in Asia meeting in Seoul, South Korea, June 24-27, 2017. Co-organizer for the panel: "New Perspectives on the Comfort Women Issue: Local and International Dynamics and the Prospects for Reconciliation. "
  • Paper presentation at the Catalyst Workshop on East Asian Policymaking at Wesleyan University, May 19-20, 2017.
  • Paper presentation, “Gendering Civil Society: Women and the Politics of Care in Japan” on a panel titled The Evolving Japanese Voter: Women, Participation, and Electoral Choice in the Abe Era” for the Annual Meeting of the Association for Asian Studies in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, March 16-19, 2017. 
  • Conference participation in AL1GN: Alliance for the Low Income and First Generation Narrative, March 31-April 2, 2017 at Barnard College.
  • Conference acceptance : Women of Color in the Academy hosted by Stanford University, March 9-11, 2017.  National networking, mentoring, and professional development conference. 
  • Paper presentation, “Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in the Classroom and Curriculum”  for a panel titled: "Reinvigorating International Politics: Taking   Global Voices (Gender & Diversity) Seriously in IR, Part II – Practice," for the Annual meeting of the International Studies Association in Baltimore, February 22-25, 2017.
  • Paper presentation (with Mary McCarthy, co-author) at the Administrations of Memory Interdisciplinary Workshop of  the International Political Science Association in Paris, France, December 9, 2016. We will present our work on Korean Americans and the Comfort Women Issue in US-Japan-South Korea relations. 
  • Presentation of book chapter, "The Politics of Care and Community" for an edited volume, The Private and the Public: Women and Politics in Contemporary Japan, Gill Steel, Editor. The book workshop will be in Kyoto, Japan at Doshisa University, October  28-29, 2016. (Unable to present due to a lack of funding).
  • Presented two papers at the Joint East Asian Studies Conference (JEAS), September 7-9, 2016  at the Study for Oriental and African Studies at the  University of London.  
  • Invited by the American Political Science Association's Professional Development Program to be on a roundtable, “First Year(s) on the Faculty: Advice for Early Career Success,” at the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, September 2, 2016. Also serving as discussant for a panel on migration and civil society on September 3, 2016.  
  • Invited speaker, F&M College Prep Summer Program, July 12, 2016 (about my experiences as a first generation student, immigrant, Pell Grant recipient, and Asian American woman in the profession).



  • Discussant for the Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA's educational Speaker Series on "Gender Equality in Japan and the Impact of Womenomics, " April 27, 2016, Washington, DC.                                                                          
  • Invited lecture (research presentation), Yale University: Japanese Politics and Diplomacy Program, Friday, February 19, 2016 from 12 to 1:30pm.
  • Invited lecture (paper presentation) for "Issues in Contemporary East Asia Colloquium Series" at the University of Pennsylvania, Center for East Asian Studies on Thursday, October 29, 2015 from 4:30-6pm. 
  • "How the Comfort Women Issue Became a Korean American Issue: Grievance Politics and the Korean American Electorate" for The Multiple Contours of Asian American Politics panel at the  2016 Western Political Science Association Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, March 24-26, 2016. Co-authored/co-presenting  with Mary McCarthy.
  • "Gender and Disaster: Women and Post-Fukushima Activism, Civil Society, and Democracy in Japan" for the  2016 Western Political Science Association Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, March 24-26, 2016.
  • Paper presentation for a Panel on Gender and Contemporary Politics in Japan (Japan Studies Group) for the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association (APSA) in San Francisco, September 3-6, 2015. (September 3, 10:15am to 12:00pm)
  • Chair and co-discussant with Francesc Amat  for a panel on Decentralization and Redistribution for the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association (APSA) in San Francisco, September 3-6. 2015 (Division 14: Comparative Politics of Advanced Industrial Societies, Saturday, September 5, 10:15am to 12:00pm).

Live Media  Appearances

  • Channel News Asia to comment on the Abe Administration and the status of women in Japan, August 27,  2015.
  • Channel News Asia to comment on the passage of the security bills in Japan, September 19, 2015.
  • Channel News Asia to comment on the Trilateral Summit (China-Japan-South Korea), November 1, 2015.


  • "What has the Abe Government Achieved for Women? Womenomics and Women's Rights" (Panel co-organizer with Liv Coleman). Paper prepared for the annual meeting of the Association for Asian Studies in Chicago, March 26-29, 2015. 
  • "Transnational Actors and Networks: NGOs, NPOs, and Women's Empowerment after 3/11." Paper prepared for presentation at the Annual Meeting of the International Studies Association, Feb. 18-21, 2015 in New Orleans. Panel FA76: The Political Economy of Women's Movements in Transnational Spaces" Friday, February 20, 8:15am-10am.  
  • Discussant for "Women and Foreign Workers: New Stakeholders of Abenomics", a public workshop presented by the USJI and Ritsumeikan University (September 8, 2014, Washington, D.C.). 
  • Panel presentation "Womenomics, Gender Gaiatsu, and Japan's Gender Equality Institutions" for the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association in Washington, DC, August 28-31, 2014.  
  • Invited public lecture on Gender Inequality and Women's Activism in Japan at Haverford College, Wednesday, April 16, 2014 (class visit on April 17 to talk about fieldwork and women's activism in Japan post 3/11). 


  • "Cities, Citizens, and Japan's Regional Relations with South Korea and Russia," the International Studies Association Annual Convention in San Francisco, CA, April 3-6, 2013.
  • "Local Actors and Regional Economic Integration", the Western Political Science Association Annual Meeting, March 28-30, 2013 in Hollywood, CA.
  • Invited to present at Southern Methodist University in Houston, Texas for an international conference  on Japanese Politics and Economic Reforms During the Koizumi Years, November 7-8, 2012.
  • Discussant for a panel on Japanese politics at Columbia University, April 28, 2011. (Discussed a book project on redistributive politics and the Japanese case).
  • Paper presentation at the Annual Association for Asian Studies Meeting, Honolulu, Hawaii, March 31-April 3, 2011.
  • February 4-5, 2011, "Political Change in Japan II: One Step Forward, One Step Back," Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center, Stanford University.
  • November 19-20, 2010 Deutsche Institute for Japan Studies, conference for an edited volume on Religion and Politics in Japan (LDP-Komeito coalition), Tokyo, Japan.
  • "The Politics of Mercy: the Costs of Coalition for the Soka-Gakkai and Komeito" (panel on the Komeito) for the British Association for Japanese Studies, September 9-10, 2010, Study for Oriental and African Studies, London.


  • Live media interviews for Channel News Asia

           8/27/15  on womenomics in Japan

           9/19/15  on the passage of the new security bills in Japan

            11/1/15  on the trilateral summit meeting in Asia

  • 2011: CBS Philadelphia radio interview regarding 3.11



Works-in-preparation for submission

  • Journal article: "How the Comfort Women Issue Became a Korean-American Issue: Local Politics and Japan-South Korea-US Relations" with Mary McCarthy to be presented at the Adminstrations of Memory Interdisciplinary Workshop (International Political Science Association) in Paris, France, Dec. 9, 2016.
  • Book proposal on women, civil society, and democracy in Japan and South Korea.


Submitted, under review 

  • “Women’s Participation in Civil Society After 3.11: Implications for Japan’s Democracy”  (Revise and Resubmit is due to Women Studies International Forum in May, 2017)
  • Book chapter: "The Politics of Care and Community" on women's activism for an edited volume, The Private and the Public: Women and Politics in Contemporary Japan, Gill Steel, Editor (volume is out for consideration at a university press as of March 1, 2017).


  • "Following-up on Japan's Womenomics Agenda," for  Asie.Visions of the French Institute of International Relations, a peer-reviewed on-line journal. Forthcoming on-line, Spring, 2017.
  • "Japan Tries to Promote Women's Rights, But Cultural Norms Get in the Way" Commentary (Q and A with the editor) for World Politics Review. Published on-line Oct. 12, 2016.
  • "Gender Gaiatsu: An Institutional Perspective on Womenomics" in the US-Japan Women's Journal,  October/November 2015 issue, volume 48.
  • "Empowering the Executive: Koizumi and the Council for Economic and Fiscal Policy" peer-reviewed book chapter for an edited volume on Koizumi's reforms. Forthcoming  late 2017 from Ashgate (under contract).
  • Op-ed on Womenomics published August 31, 2014 in The Asahi Shimbun. 
  • "Womenomics and Women's Empowerment: Can Abe be the Women's Prime Minister?" for the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation, Policy Report (June 2014).                            
  • "Komeito in Coalition" with Axel Klein for a peer reviewed edited volume, "Komeito: Religion and Politics in Japan," Steven Reed, Axel Klein, George Ehrhardt, and Levi McLaughlin editors (University of California Press, Berkeley. November, 2014).



  •  "Decentralization and the Democratic Party of Japan." Peer-reviewed book chapter for an edited volume on the Democratic Party of Japan, Japan Under the DPJ, 2013 (Chapter 10). Kenji Kushida and Philip Lipscy, editors (Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center at Stanford University). 
  • Book review for the Journal of Asian Studies (2012).
  • Book review for the Journal of Pacific Affairs (2011).

Professional Service

Reviewed articles for

  • American Political Science Review
  • Political Research Quarterly
  • Journal of Politics
  • Democratization
  • Party Politics
  •  The Journal of East Asian Studies
  • Women, Politics & Policy

 Reviewed a book proposal and a book manuscript for Routledge.

Invited to give feedback for a revised edition of a textbook on gender and politics for CQ Press/Sage Publications.

Invited to contribute my syllabus to the Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights.

Grants & Awards



Solomon Wank Memorial Fellowship for Peace and Human Rights with student, Yealin (Lynn) Im for a collaboration on the Comfort Women and civil society activists.  Funding for fieldwork in Seoul and summer research over ten weeks.

Accepted to the Women of Color in the Academy Conference hosted by the Vice Provost's office at the University of Stanford, March 9-11, 2017.

  • 2012-2014: The Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation, US-Japan Network for the Future Fellow, Cohort II.
  • Spring 2012: Grant from Franklin and Marshall College to develop an interdisciplinary Foundations Seminar, "Imagining Asia" during the summer of 2012. 
  • Spring 2011: Hackman Fellowship with student Abigail Heller. Research collaboration on British and Japanese coalition politics. We gathered data and analyzed the coalition agreement and policy tradeoffs of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government. Student is currently enrolled in a doctoral program for comparative politics. 

Student Collaborations



  • 2016-17: Advising two independents on South Korean politics, a directed reading on gender and politics, and an independent on US-Japan-South Korea relations.
  • ​2015-16:  Advisor for a Marshall Scholar project on devolution to Scotland and British politics (student applied for and received a summer fellowship to conduct research in Scotland in summer of 2015).
  • Chair for four independent projects for 2012-13: 1) gender and the law/politics, 2) international law and Africa, 3) Chinese nationalism, and 4) Government, business, and the internet.
  • Faculty Advisor on a Faculty-Student collaboration, Hackman Fellows research project on the British coalition, Summer 2011. (Student is now in a Ph.D. program for comparative politics).
  • Faculty Advisor for an independent study on US businesses in China, Spring 2011.
  • Faculty Advisor for an independent study on Turkish politics, Fall 2011.
  • Chair for an honors thesis on the institutionalization of ASEAN (2010-11). Student presented his research at an international conference on ASEAN. He currently works for the ASEAN in Washington, DC and has published in The Diplomat. 
  • Served on six  honors defense committees (2011, 2012, and 2016).
  • Supervised two internships in the summer of 2012.

Course Information


GOV 120, Comparative Politics 

GOV 130, International Politics

GOV 272, Gender and Politics from a Global Perspective (now GOV/WGSS 226)

GOV 324, Asian Politics 

GOV 472, Senior Seminar, Post-War Japanese Politics and Society 

GOV 476, Senior Seminar, The Politics of Gender

CNX (to be developed) on the Asian American Experience 

(Received a summer grant in 2012 to develop a Foundations course, Imagining Asia, which may be offered as a Connections course in the future).

Served on the International and Off-Campus Studies commitee for two years; currently serving on the Women, Gender, and Sexualities Studies committee and the Provost's Diversity Committee.


Campus and community activities: