Aso 2.0: Regional Well-Being in Japan

The Aso-Region on Kyūshū Island – rediscovering a field of research for Viennese Japanese Studies

The Aso-region is famous for its volcano and the surrounding caldera located in central Kyūshū. Tourists visit this geologically interesting place to enjoy its distinguished nature and the religious importance of the local Aso shrine. It is administratively divided into the northern part (Aso-shi) and the less populated southern villages (Minami-Aso-mura and Takamori-mura). Most of the research conducted in the Aso-caldera mostly focuses on the northern part and its remote villages.

The Aso 2.0 project is closely linked to its predecessor study of the 1960s led by the Japanese Studies Department of the University of Vienna. In our research, we examine village life in the region from different perspectives, such as sociology, political science, anthropology and human geography. We regularly exchange our experiences in meetings, at which guest speakers are highly welcomed. Specialist on Japanese anthropology, Joy Hendry, and Japanese sociologist Takeda Shunsuke (Shiga University), among others, gave us inspiring insight in their research. We have been visiting Aso to conduct fieldwork there as often as possible. We also enabled our students to learn how to conduct fieldwork hands-on at an excursion in summer 2018. Our work is further enriched by a fruitful cooperation with Kumamoto University that have made possible several workshops in Vienna and Kumamoto until today. We are proud to state that our emphasis on the region has not only resulted in several talks and publications (see Publications & Presentations), but also in a number of master’s and doctoral theses.

History of the Aso-project

The Aso project was the first major research project at the newly founded Institute for Japanese Studies at the University of Vienna in 1965. The primarily ethnographic joint project of the Institute’s employees at the time, Alexander Slawik, Josef Kreiner, Erich Pauer, Sepp Linhart and others, with field visits in the years 1968 and 1969, was intended to contribute to the international body of research on the rural culture and society of Japan in its regional diversity. The idea behind the exploration of the volcanic Aso-basin in the south of the country for an integrated interdisciplinary examination of its history, material culture, religion, sociology, botany and natural resources, was on the one hand a critical view of the results of western Japan-experts who, whether in the form of classic ethnographic studies of individual villages (Community Studies) or investigations treating Japan as a whole, created the impression of a strong homogeneity of Japanese culture and society. On the other hand, the regional studies of Japanese scientific associations, who served as a model for the study in many ways, were criticized for not living up to their claim of interdisciplinarity.

The Institute’s fifty-year founding anniversary served as an inspiration for the head of the Japanese Studies section, Wolfram Manzenreiter, to turn what started as a reflection on the history of Japanese Studies in Vienna into a new research focus. Just like fifty years ago, the new research focus was to deal with aspects of regionality beyond the Japanese metropolises and exploit the methodological advantages of Community Studies and interdisciplinarity. As a first interim step in the realization of the project "Aso 2.0", Wolfram Manzenreiter and Johannes Wilhelm organized the workshop "Viennese Japanese Studies 50 years ago: The Aso project"on April 10 and 11, 2015, in Vienna. In addition to contributions dealing with the scientific context into which the original project was embedded, as well as an exhibition curated by Johannes Wilhelm and his students, and an exhibition of original materials documenting various aspects of the field study, Erich Pauer, Sepp Linhart and Josef Kreiner gave insights into their personal experiences during the project. This allowed participants of the workshop to gain an idea of what it meant to practice fieldwork 50 years ago

The fact that scholars of Japanese Studies went to do fieldwork in Japan - today a matter of course -, presented a downright revolutionary endeavor at the time. Granted, cultural anthropologists from the United States in particular had been conducting field studies in Japan since the 1930s, especially after the Second World War. But the Japanese Studies community of the German-speaking world, which consisted exclusively of (classical) philologists at the time of the Aso project, responded to the conference reports of their Viennese colleagues with great astonishment, and some had little understanding for its existence. The interdisciplinary system of the project was a major innovation. Although, partly due to a lack of continuity of personnel at the Institute, a lack of funds and tightening data protection legislation in Japan, ultimately only a few of the individual studies were completed and published, the project was crucial to the development of the German-speaking Japanese Studies: This was the beginning of a modern form of Japanese Studies, founded in cultural and social sciences, evolving alongside the existing philological tradition. At the same time, it gradually became customary for Japanese Studies scholars of any provenance to conduct field research in Japan.

In many ways, fifty years ago such research was a far more troublesome business than it is today, which is why in July 1968, the Wiener Zeitung reported, not entirely unjustified, of a "great expedition" by Austrian scientists, headed by Prof. Dr. Slawik from the Institute of Japanese Studies of the University of Vienna. Not only did the group, in order to travel to Japan at reasonable cost, require a journey time of around six days. There was also no digital photography, which is why a donation of 100 color- and 100 black-and-white-films had to be acquired from Fujifilm and constantly carried around, in addition to the already heavy photo equipment. Above all, there was no internet through which the team members in Vienna could have accurately informed themselves about the situation in the field in order to plan the field stay appropriately or gather first data and other research materials. Researchers had to wait until after arriving in Japan to find out which administrative establishments had useful materials, or could otherwise be of help. Further, certain villages that were selected for a closer examination turned out to be to be inappropriate, or it was discovered that certain issues could not be investigated - either because no information could be retrieved, or because so much material was available that it could not be organized and processed in the short time of the field trip in a time where computers, copiers or scanners were not readily available.

While the Aso project also examined the current social conditions in the region, it was characterized by a strong historical and ethnological orientation. Thus, the documentation of discarded agricultural implements (many of which are now archived in the Vienna World Museum) was a central aspect of the study; whereas another aspect concerned the analysis of traditional social village structures. The relative remoteness of the Aso region favored such projects, but at the same time it was an obstacle to the exploration of Japan as an emerging economic power.

Research on Aso today

Today, however, Japan is affected by demographic shrinkage, which poses a number of problems in social and economic terms, and nowhere can this process be observed more clearly than in the rural areas of Japan. The Department of Japanese Studies at the Institute of East Asian Studies of the University of Vienna has therefore decided to examine the area again, fifty years after the first Aso project, this time as an example region for the many problems, but also opportunities that exist in rural areas, not only in Japan, but increasingly also in Western and Central Europe. Coordinated by Ralph Lützeler, the project will be re-aligned interdisciplinarily and also investigate the subjective well-being and social vulnerability of the local population, in addition to socio-economic structures and derived endogenous potentials.

End of August 2015, with the involvement of students, a panel presentation highlighted different dimensions of the project at the Conference of the German-Language Association fo Japanese Studies in Munich.

Wolfram Manzenreiter analyzes well-being in Aso by conducting interviews and participant observation in volunteer and local associations. He further examines its differences in rural and urban areas and presented preliminary results at several occasions in Europe in 2018.

Ralph Lützeler focuses on demographic changes in the Aso region and shows disparities within several areas. Together with Barbara Holthus he also researches on parental well-being in Japan: They point out how urbanization and the several dimensions of well-being affect regional differences. Their project was presented as a poster at the Annual Meeting of the VSJF 2017.

Dionyssios Askitis, Stefan Hundsdorfer, Antonia Miserka und Sebastian Polak-Rottmann are currently working on the interdisciplinary project: "The contribution of social capital to wellbeing in Japan - interdisciplinary research on the understanding of personal wellbeing in structurally impacted regions. An investigation from the perspective of Japanese studies, political science, sociology and psychology". A mixture of methods is used to analyze social aspects of subjective wellbeing in Aso. The project was presented for the first time during the annual meeting of the VSJF 2017 and initial qualitative data were already collected at the beginning and end of 2018. In March 2019, an international workshop was organized and shortly afterwards the project was awarded the three-year Doc-team scholarship.

Aso 2.0 fieldwork excursion

In July 2018, Wolfram Manzenreiter and Antonia Miserka led interested students to Aso to gather their first fieldwork experience. These students were preparing for this excursion during the course of the summer semester 2018, and shared their experiences in an own blog.


  • Askitis, Dennis
  • Miserka, Antonia

Former Staff Members

  • Holthus, Barbara (DIJ Tokyo) (until February 2018)
  • Takeda, Shunsuke (Shiga University): April 2018 - September 2018
  • Wilhelm, Johannes (Keio Universität) (until September 2016)

Publications & Presentations

2019Lützeler, Ralph und Wolfram Manzenreiter (2019): „Jenseits des strukturellen Niedergangs. Soziale Netzwerke und subjektives Wohlbefinden im ländlichen Japan“, Arbeitsgemeinschaft ländliche Sozialforschung (ÖGS Sektion ländliche Sozialforschung), March 22, 2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Land unter in Japan: Probleme des ländlichen Raums im hochindustrialisierten Japan“, 11. Sommerakademie Graz-Rein zu Japan und Europa: Wirtschaft, Wissenschaft, Politik, Kultur, Religion. Bildungshaus Mariatrost, Graz (Austria), 6.9.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Mura no shiawase to wa. Nōson shakai chosa kara mieru koto”, Society for Regional Policy Kyushu branch conference, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto (Japan), 4.9.2019
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Feeling at home and well in the countryside. A study on the wellbeing of old and new residents in rural Japan”, SEAA Tokyo Conference, Waseda University, Tokyo (Japan) (229), 2.8.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “The impact of place and space on residents’ sense of happiness in rural Japan”, European Society of Rural Studies 2019 Conference, WG4 on Rural (im)mobilities, Trondheim (Norway) (with Barbara Holthus), 27.6.2019.
2019Sebastian Polak-Rottmann: “Participating is Fun: Local Political Participation and Subjective Well-being in Rural Japan”, EastAsiaNet Workshop on “The Good Life in Asia”, University of Copenhagen and Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen (Denmark), 25.4.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Social dimensions of subjective well-being in rural Japan”, EastAsiaNet Workshop on “The Good Life in Asia”, University of Copenhagen and Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen (Denmark), 25.4.2019.
2019Antonia Miserka: “Rural Japan‘s Appeal to Old and New Residents: A Migration Analysis of two Case Studies in the Aso Region (Kumamoto)”, Japan Anthropology Workshop (JAWS) Conference “Networking and sharing”, Aarhus University, Aarhus (Denmark), 15-17.4.2019, 16.4.2019
2019Sebastian Polak-Rottmann: “Participating is Fun: Local Political Participation and Subjective Well- being in Rural Japan”, Japan Anthropology Workshop (JAWS) Conference “Networking and sharing”, Aarhus University, Aarhus (Denmark), 15-17.4.2019, 16.4.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Rural amenities: What makes life worth living in the countryside?”, Panel introduction at the Japan Anthropology Workshop (JAWS) Conference “Networking and sharing”, Aarhus University, Aarhus (Denmark), 15-17.4.2019 (read by Miserka and Polak-Rottmann), 16.4.2019.
2019Dionyssios Askitis, Stefan Hundsdorfer, Antonia Miserka, Sebastian Polak-Rottmann: erfolgreiches Zuerkennen des DOC-Team Stipendiums der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften für das Projekt: „Der Beitrag von Sozialkapital zum Wohlbefinden im ländlichen Japan – Interdisziplinäre Forschung zum Verständnis von subjektivem Wohlbefinden in strukturschwachen Regionen. Eine Untersuchung aus Perspektive der Japanologie, Politikwissenschaft, Soziologie und Psychologie“, 29.3.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Rural Well-being in Japan. Aso 2.0 (2015-20xx)”, DOCteam Workshop on “Shrinking, but Happy? Interdisciplinary Well-being Research”, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna, Vienna (Austria), 22.3.2019. 
2019Sebastian Polak-Rottmann (Vortragender, Organisation), Antonia Miserka (Vortragende), Dionyssios Askitis (Vortragender), Stefan Hundsdorfer (Vortragender): Shrinking, but Happy? Interdisciplinary Well-being Research”, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna, Vienna (Austria), 22.-23.3.2019.
2019Wolfram Manzenreiter: “Jenseits des strukturellen Niedergangs: Soziale Netzwerke und subjektives Wohlbefinden im ländlichen Japan”, ARGE Rural community studies, Federal Institute for Mountainous and Less-Favoured Areas (BAB), Vienna (Austria) (with Ralph Lützeler), 22.3.2019.
2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram und Antonia Miserka (2018): „Aus Studierenden werden Forschende: Ausbildung in der Summer Field School in Aso“, Asien: The German Journal of Contemporary Asia 149, 82–98.

2018

Prochaska-Meyer, Isabelle: “Fiction and Reality of Japan’s Rural Shrinkage Problem. Discussing the TV Series 'Napoleon’s Village' (Naporeon no mura)“, JAPANologists' Playground - Japan: Fictions and Reality, Nicolaus Copernicus Univ. (Torun, Polen), 01.12.2018.
2018Askitis, Dionyssios: “A 'Happiness Capital'? The Role of Social Capital in Offsetting the Impact of Structural Decline in a Rural Japanese Community and the Interaction with Personality”, VJSF Annual Conference 2018, Berlin, November 24.

2018

Miserka, Antonia: “Rural Japan's Appeal to Old and New Residents: A Migration Analysis of two Case Studies in Aso Region (Kumamoto)”, VSJF Annual Conference 2018, Berlin, November 24.

2018

Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Participating is Fun: Local Political Participation and Subjective Well-being in Rural Japan”, Hokkaido University, October 31.

2018

Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Participating is Fun: Local Political Participation and Subjective Well-being in Rural Japan”, Ritsumeikan University, November 7.

2018

Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Japans passive Landbevölkerung? Eine Betrachtung der Vorstellungen von politischer Partizipation und Demokratie in der Aso-Region in Kumamoto“, 17. Deutschsprachiger Japanologentag. FU Berlin. 30.08.2018.

2018

Prochaska-Meyer, Isabelle: “65+ Alt sein im ländlichen Japan“, 17. Deutschsprachiger Japanologentag. FU Berlin. 29.08.2018.

2018

Lützeler, Ralph: “Das Wiener Aso-Projekt 2.0 in der Lehre“, 17. Deutschsprachiger Japanologentag. FU Berlin. 30.08.2018.

2018

Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “How to maintain a happy and meaningful life in the turmoil of regional decline: Insights from rural Japan“, Invited talk at the Department of Anthropology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, December 11.

2018

Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “‘Ländliches Wohlbefinden in Japan. Skizzierung einer Langzeitstudie in Aso, SW-Japan. Introduction speech at the final presentation of the 2018 Aso Summer Field School”, University of Vienna, November 15.

2018

Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “The meaning of ‘the local’ for happiness and selfhood. The case of rural Japan”, Meaning of the Local, German Institute of Japanese Studies, October 19.

2018

Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “Researching happiness and Well-being”, University of Kumamoto, July 17.

2018

Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “Happiness and the good life in Japan”, Copenhagen, May 25.

2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram: “European perspectives on work values and work-life-balance”, Grand Challenge Workshop “Ikigai and Work”, Kumamoto Daigaku Chihō Jichi Kenkyūkai, Kumamoto Daigaku Seisaku Sōzō Kenkyū Sentā, University of Kumamoto, February 19.
2018Takeda, Shunsuke: "Succession and Reconstruction of Festival in Overaged and Depopulated Communites: Focusing on the Role of Mediator between Inhabitants and Migrants", Vortrag an der Universität Wien, June 25, 2018.
2018Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Feldforschung in Aso: Wolfram Manzenreiter im Gespräch mit Sebastian Polak-Rottmann", Minikomi: Informationen des Akademischen Arbeitskreises Japan 87, 53-58.
2018Spletzer, Signy: "Here to Stay - The Revitalization Initiative of Zen of the Aso Region and its Impact on the Local Community", Lützeler, Ralph (Hg.): Rural areas between decline and resurgence. Lessons from Japan and Austria. Wien: Universität Wien, 167-170. (=Beiträge zur Japanologie 46).
2018Wilhelm, Johannes: "Disaster Resilience in Coastal Pacific Tōhoku: Restoring Livelihood after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake", Lützeler, Ralph (Hg.): Rural areas between decline and resurgence. Lessons from Japan and Austria. Wien: Universität Wien, 131-150. (=Beiträge zur Japanologie 46).
2018Holthus, Barbara and Lützeler, Ralph: "Project Report A: Regional Differences of Parental Well-Being in Japan", Lützeler, Ralph (Hg.): Rural areas between decline and resurgence. Lessons from Japan and Austria. Wien: Universität Wien, 93-97. (= Beiträge zur Japanologie 46).
2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Rural Happiness in Japan: Contrasting Urban and Rural Well-Being in Kumamoto", Lützeler, Ralph (Hg.): Rural areas between decline and resurgence. Lessons from Japan and Austria. Wien: Universität Wien, 43-64. (= Beiträge zur Japanologie 46).
2018Lützeler, Ralph: "Living Conditions in Japanese Rural Areas: Stuck in a Downward Spiral?", Lützeler, Ralph (Hg.): Rural areas between decline and resurgence. Lessons from Japan and Austria. Wien: Universität Wien, 15-26. (= Beiträge zur Japanologie 46).
2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Gender and the maintenance of social life in rural Japan", Université Paris Diderot, May 3, 2018.
2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Uncool Japan?! Vom Leben auf dem Land", Vortrag anlässlich der Ausstellung Cool Japan, Bremen Überseemuseum, April 17, 2018.
2018Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Social institutions and village life in rural Japan - a 50-year perspective", University of Hamburg, April 16, 2018.
2017Miserka, Antonia: “Kumamoto-ken no sankan shōtoshi ni kin’nen mirareru ijū“, Sociological Association for Social Analysis, Fukuoka, December 2017. 
2017Miserka, Antonia: “Contemporary trends of migration in rural Kumamoto - A case study of Aso district focused on different migration conditions of Return Migrants and Newcomers”, Association of Rural Planning, Kumamoto, December 2017.
2017Miserka, Antonia: “Kaso Nōsanson ni okeru jinkō kanryū to chiiki ishiki: Ōita-ken Nakatsue-mura 1996-nen chōsa no kikaku”, Sociological Society of West Japan, Matsuyama, May 2017.
2017Manzenreiter, Wolfram and Lützeler, Ralph: "Introduction: Rural Japan Revisited", VSJF Annual Conference 2017, Vienna, October 31, 2017.

Poster Presentations:

  • Askitis, Dionyssios, Hundsdorfer, Stefan and Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Social Relationships and Happiness in Rural Japan and Austria"
  • Holthus, Barbara and Lützeler, Ralph: "Parental Well-Being in Japan: Regional Differences"
  • Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Exploring Rural Happiness in Japan"
  • Spletzer, Signy: "Regional Branding in Rural Japan"
  • Wilhelm, Johannes

Section Meeting:

  • Polak-Rottmann, Sebastian: "Japans passive Landbevölkerung? Eine Betrachtung der Vorstellungen von politischer Partizipation und Demokratie in der Aso-Region in Kumamoto"
  • Spletzer, Signy: "Here to stay: An analysis of the revitalization initiative Zen of the Aso region and its impact on the local community"
  • Wilhelm, Johannes: "Institutional aspects of village organizations in Aso"
2017

Holthus, Barbara and Manzenreiter, Wolfram (Hg.): Life Course, Happiness and Well-being in Japan. London and New York: Routledge.

2017Holthus, Barbara and Manzenreiter, Wolfram (Hg.): Happiness and the Good Life in Japan. London and New York: Routledge.
2017Takeda, Shunsuke: "Sairei ni okeru chiiki shakai no konfurikuto to dentō keishō no dainamizumu", Vortrag an der Universität Wien, September 13, 2017.
2017Manzenreiter, Wolfram and Holthus, Barbara: "Outsider/insider: being different in rural Japan", 15th International Conference of the European Association for Japanese Studies, Lisbon, September 1, 2017.
2017Manzenreiter, Wolfram: Panel Convenor "Fractured rurality in contemporary Japan", 15th International Conference of the European Association for Japanese Studies, Lisbon, September 1, 2017.

Individual Presentations:

  • Ichinose, Tomohiro: "Debate on the relocation of the residential area and the construction of a tsunami seawall in Mōne, Kesennuma City after the 2011 Tsunami Disaster"
  • Lützeler, Ralph: "The marginalization of rural Japan between myth and reality"
  • Wilhelm, Johannes: "We just want to be, staying here … Life, social vulnerability and resilience in a depopulating hamlet"
2017Möller, Hannah: "Auf Spurensuche in Japan", uni:view vom 15.03.2017. [Link]
2016Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Das Glück auf dem Land: Wohlbefinden in Kumamoto im Stadt-Land-Vergleich", David Chiavacci und Iris Wieczorek (Hg.): Japan 2016. Politik, Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft. München: Iudicium, 205-306.
2016Aso: Vergangenheit, Gegenwart und Zukunft eines Wiener Forschungsprojekts zum ländlichen Japan. Wien: Abteilung für Japanologie, Institut für Ostasienwissenschaften, Universität Wien. (= Beiträge zur Japanologie 45). [Link]
2016Lützeler, Ralph: Leitung des Panels "Rural areas in Japan - between decline and resurge", The 2nd EAJS Conference in Japan, Universität Kobe, 24.-25.09.2016.

Einzelvorträge der ProjektmitarbeiterInnen:

  • Holthus, Barbara: "Parental well-being in Japan: Regional differences"
  • Lützeler, Ralph: "Living conditions in Japanese rural areas: Stuck in a downward spiral?"
  • Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Rural well-being in Japan: Reexamining the Aggregate Kumamoto Happiness Index"
  • Wilhelm, Johannes: "Vulnerability and resilience as seen in a post-disaster rural environment"
2015Eder, Andreas: "Kommunalpolitik im Raum Aso. Lokale Identität, politische Partizipation und lokale Demokratie", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Gesswein, Katharina und Lydia Marinoff: "Selbstdarstellung des Tourismusgebietes Aso", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Getreuer-Kargl, Ingrid: "Projekt Aso. Die Vision einer Forschungskontinuität", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Getreuer-Kargl, Ingrid (Panelleitung): "Aso 2.0", Panel auf dem 16. Deutschen Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.-27.08.2015. (www.japanologentag2015.japan.uni-muenchen.de/sektionen_panels/aso/index.html)
2015Holthus, Barbara: "Familien in Aso. Soziologische Ansätze", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Huber, Matthias: "Arbeitsmarkt und Arbeitszufriedenheit in Aso", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Lützeler, Ralph: "Aso heute. Ein ländlicher Raum in der Abwärtsspirale?", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Aso 2.0. Überlegungen zu einem Teamprojekt", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Ländliches Wohlbefinden in Japan. Skizzierung einer Langzeitstudie in Aso, SW-Japan", Wien. 16.12.2015.
2015Manzenreiter, Wolfram: "Vom Glück, in Aso zu leben – und zu forschen", Energy in Modern Japan. Past, Present, Future. VSJF Annual Conference. Leipzig. 22.11.2015.
2015Miserka, Antonia: "Rückmigration ins Aso-Gebiet", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Ölschleger, Hans-Dieter: "Das Aso-Projekt aus Sicht von ethnologischen Ansätzen in der Japanforschung", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.
2015Pickl-Kolaczia, Brigitte: "Matsuri und kollektive Identität", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Raab, Hannah E.: "Unterstützung der älteren und alten Bevölkerung in Aso. Der Aso-shi kōreisha ikiiki Plan", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Trauner, Ya-Sin I. und Timothy Primus: "Gender - ein vernachlässigter Aspekt bei Aso 1.0? Der Rollenwandel der Frau im Ländlichen Raum Japans", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 27.08.2015.
2015Wilhelm, Johannes: "Soziale Vulnerabilität und Resilienz", 16. Deutscher Japanologentag. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. München. 26.08.2015.