Sophia Magazine vol.1 / SUMMER 2015

15associated with civic life, such as welfare policy,” she says, looking back on the past. When she was a senior, she went to France to study at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris. There, she witnessed how French politics was run and felt a difference in the way citizens were engaged in politics rsthand. That experience led her to pursue a career in academia. While working on her doctoral thesis at the University of California, Berkeley, which is regarded as at the highest echelon of research on labor policy, she realized that it was essential to pay proper attention to families, in particular to issues associated with the sexual division of labor, in order to deal with social se-curity or the labor market. “Once I had a perspective of gen-der, a wide variety of issues that I had not been able to gure began to be smoothly linked and sorted out,” she says. The number of researchers who deal with gender in the area of politics is extremely small, however; she has pursued her studies on her own. “Sophia University is the campus that boasts the greatest diversity in terms of both gender and nationality in Japan. Just as I became aware of something important or got hints while studying at university overseas, I will try my best as a teacher so that those international students learning here can gain something important,” she concludes. “It is important for female lawmakers to be aware of being a minority when making a decision. It can help give better consideration to even smaller minorities, such as the handi-capped,” she adds. In a male-centric environment, however, there are quite a few cases in which women manage to achieve or maintain political leadership by behaving like men. “In order for fe-male leaders to be able to demonstrate their innate capabili-ties, it is important to put an environment in place where a certain number of women can share their perspectives in a supportive way.” Coincidentally, Japan has recently decided to lower the legal voting age to 18, albeit belatedly. To improve the na-tion’s political climate further, debates about gender must become much more central. The reason Professor Miura majored in politics at Keio University was her interest in dynamic modern history. However, “In class, when nations and politics were being discussed they seemed to be something that was far from us. As a result, my interest shifted to other areas closely WOMEN IN NATIONAL PARLIMENTSThe International Organization of Parliaments (IPU) Homepage G20 ClassicationWorld ClassicationCountry%WomenLower or single HouseUpper House or Senate17South Africa41.9%35.2%219Mexico38.0%33.6%324Germany36.5%40.6%425Argentina36.2%38.9%540Italy31.0%28.3%646United Kingdom29.4%24.1%752Australia26.7%38.2%855France26.2%25.0%960Canada25.3%38.8%1070China23.6%-1191Saudi Arabia19.9%-1294United States of America19.4%20.0%13103Indonesia17.1%-14110Republic of Korea16.3%-15121Turkey14.4%-16127Russian Federation13.6%17.1%17141India12.0%12.8%18152Brazil9.9%16.0%19153Japan9.5%15.7%Studying Abroad Becomes a Turning PointResearch

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