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Brief History and Present Situation

The History of the Japan Comparative Education Society

The Japan Comparative Education Society (JCES) was established in 1965.
The 1st annual meeting, which also served as the founding meeting, was held in Hiroshima (at the Miyajima Lodge). At this meeting, Dr. Masunori Hiratsuka (Director, National Institute for Educational Research) was inaugurated as the first president.

For five years prior to this meeting, volunteers from the universities and educational research organizations who shared an interest in comparative education had worked together toward the creation of this Society. It was only as a result of many planning retreats and their hard work that this organization has come into being. These meetings contributed to a strong sense of familiarity and consolidation among the Society members.

At the Society’s 10th annual meeting in 1974 at the Horikawa Kaikan Hall in Kyoto, the journal of the society was launched. At that time, title of the journal was “Nihon Hikaku-kyoiku Gakkai Kiyo” in Japanese, with its English title “The Bulletin of Japan Comparative Education Society.” The first edition was published in March, 1975. The editorial committee was headed by Dr. Tetsuya Kobayashi.

From 1990, the title of the journal was changed to “Hikaku Kyoikugaku Kenkyu” standing for Comparative Education. The most recent edition is Volume No.45.

This Society participated as one of founding members in the first meeting of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies (WCCES) held in Canada (Ottawa), in 1970. The Society subsequently held the 4th meeting of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies in Tokyo (National Women’s Educational Center) in 1980. Since then, the Society has been working closely with the WCCES.   

To commemorate the achievements of Dr. Masunori Hiratsuka, the first president of this Society, "Japan Comparative Education Society’s Hiratsuka Award” was established in 1990. The purpose of this award is to encourage comparative education research of young members of the Society.

20 awards have been granted during 1991-2012.

Current State of the Japan Comparative Education Society

As of September 2012, members of the society numbers 1051, 101 of whom are overseas members. Main activities of the Society:

1. Holding Annual Conferences
2. Publishing the Journal, Comparative Education
3. Selection of awardee of the Hiratsuka Award
4. Issuing Newsletters and List of Members
5. Collaboration with related international societies, such as the WCCES
6. Construction of the Society’s Database; (RICE)
7. Maintaining the Society's web site

The important agenda of the Society is deliberated by the Board of Directors (32 members as of 2012), which consists of members elected through elections held in six areas in Japan. The Executive Committee, which consists of the President, the Secretary-General, chairpersons of the committees and other selected directors, is responsible for daily affairs.

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