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Watanabe Democracy Fellowship—Purpose and Goals

Democracy Fellowship Purpose

The purpose of the Watanabe Fellowship Program is to facilitate dialogue and cooperation between the Fellows and their American counterparts across multiple sectors to promote democracy, leadership, and diversity. 


Securing Democracy on a Global Scale

Collaboration and alliance between the United States, Japan, and other democratic nations play a pivotal role in solidifying and securing democracy on a global scale. In an interconnected world where the challenges to democratic values and institutions are both internal and external, these partnerships are essential safeguards. By uniting democratic nations, we create a network of support that promotes the spread of democratic principles and ensures that the rights and freedoms of individuals are protected and respected. 

These alliances are symbolic and practical. They enable the sharing of best practices, lessons learned, and resources to strengthen democratic institutions and shape policies that promote tolerance, diversity, equity, and social justice. Additionally, they enhance our collective capacity to address transnational issues such as immigration, climate change, global health crises, and terrorism—which can only be tackled through international cooperation. By collaborating closely, the United States, Japan, and other democratic nations send a powerful message to the world that democracy is not just a national aspiration but a global commitment, ensuring that democratic values continue to thrive and endure in an evolving international landscape.


Key Goals

  • Democracy Building, Civic Engagement, and the Arts
    Facilitating dialogue on strengthening democratic values and principles, and the role of the arts in promoting democracy, freedom of expression, and deepening civic engagement. 

  • Immigration, Diversity, and Inclusion
    Addressing the opportunities and challenges of immigration policies and practices; strategies to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion; and the impact these issues have on the cultural, economic, and social fabric of our nations.


The Democracy Center explores the rights, freedoms, and fragility of democracy, helping to build bridges, and find common ground between people of diverse backgrounds and opinions.

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