Will the Japanese Change Their Constitution?

Project Expert

Sheila A. Smith
Sheila A. Smith

John E. Merow Senior Fellow for Asia-Pacific Studies

About the Project

Outside of Japan, misconceptions about Japan’s constitutional debate abound, often driven by the headlines of the moment. To help understand the complexity of this Japanese conversation, Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies, has initiated a broad conversation on CFR's Asia Unbound blog in which leading experts discuss the prospects for revising Japan’s postwar constitution. What would a Japanese designed constitution look like? What would remain of the current constitution? How would today’s Japanese seek to alter the balance of power between the individual and the state? What individual rights might be asserted–or altered?

Some contributors have had–and will continue to have–a direct role in shaping Japan’s debate; all have an avid interest in understanding the currents and the consequences of what Smith sees as a defining conversation for the people of Japan. It is imperative that those outside Japan understand the debate and learn more about the advocates and institutions that will shape it.