Purpose of the Center of International Law and Policy

President Hideo Ohno, Executive Vice President Toshiya Ueki, and the signboard of the Center for International Law and Policy

Tohoku University has launched a Center for International Law and Policy (CILP), with the aim of promoting better understanding and dissemination of international law, as well as helping to develop policy proposals.

The new center, which officially opened on April 1, will facilitate Tohoku University’s long tradition of applying world-leading research towards solutions to social problems.

In recent years, the state of global affairs has become increasingly unstable. From military conflicts to issues of economic disparity, scarcity of natural resources, climate change and pandemics, the need for transnational diplomatic efforts has become vital.

Tohoku University believes that it is responsibility for itself as a research university, to contribute to the resolution of these issues, with the comprehensive knowledge accumulated in the 100-year history of its Faculty of Law and Letters.

A Message from the Director of
the Center for International Law and Policy

Prof. Toshiya Ueki

In today’s world, in which the international community is working on overcoming global issues such as climate change, the spread of infectious diseases, and unprecedented disasters, there is a need for ‘comprehensive knowledge’ based on both knowledge from the natural sciences and knowledge from the social sciences and humanities. This perspective of fusing together disparate knowledge is also essential in considering the formulation of international law, which provides our global society with its rules and regulations.

In April 2023, Tohoku University established the Center for International Law and Policy. The aim of the center is to serve as a base where Tohoku University will create ‘comprehensive knowledge’ that will open up academic frontiers and create new knowledge for society.

Tohoku University, where a Faculty of Law and Letters was established over 100 years ago, is one of Japan’s leading academic institutions in respect of education and research on international law.

The university has hitherto produced three judges who have been members of international judicial bodies,* and they have greatly contributed to the upholding of the rule of law within the international community and to the peaceful resolution of disputes. Aside from these outstanding achievements in the field of international law, Tohoku University also possesses the strength of being a comprehensive university with a long tradition of bringing together and using academic knowledge from a wide variety of fields.

The Center for International Law and Policy was created to address complex social issues that go not only beyond national borders but also the conventional boundaries of academic disciplines.

The Center will carry out research activities in cooperation with domestic and international research institutions and will maintain a perspective on both theoretical and practical issues related to international law. In 2023, the year of the Center’s establishment, researchers from Finland, the Netherlands, Austria, and other countries were invited to an international symposium to examine various issues in international law related to international organizations such as the United Nations and the World Health Organization, and the Center also explored theoretical issues surrounding international law.

At the same time, the Center will closely watch and study new and developing trends in the international community regarding the formulation of rules that affect global issues. Our interdisciplinary efforts have so far focused on trends in the formulating of rules for two areas: conservation of marine biological diversity (the BBNJ Agreement) and pandemic preparedness and response (the WHO Pandemic Treaty), and we have held workshops and seminars on both. We are planning to expand our studies to include other global issues such as climate change and the SDGs.

Through activities like these, we aim to further raise Tohoku University’s presence in the fields of international law and international law policy both in Japan and around the world, and to make the Center a base that will make a global contribution and disseminate its findings on international law across the world. Another of the Center’s important functions is to support the career development of early-career researchers in international law and other related fields.

The Center for International Law and Policy will inherit and develop even further the knowledge accumulated at Tohoku University, with the aim of becoming a base for the creation of ‘comprehensive knowledge’ built on our knowledge of the social sciences and humanities. I humbly request your continued support and guidance as we carry out this mission.

Shigeru Oda

  • Judge, the International Court of Justice (1976-2003)
  • Emeritus Professor at Tohoku University’s School of Law (1950-1985)

Soji Yamamoto

  • Judge, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (1996-2005)
  • Emeritus Professor at Tohoku University’s School of Law (1976-1988)

Kuniko Ozaki

  • Judge, the International Criminal Court (2009-2018)
  • Professor at Tohoku University’s Graduate School of Law (2001-2004)
  • Specially Appointed Visiting Professor at Tohoku University’s Center for International Law and Policy (2023- )


DirectorUEKI Toshiya

Vice DirectorNISHIMOTO Kentaro

Specially Appointed Visiting ProfessorOZAKI Kuniko

Specially Appointed Visiting Associate ProfessorSAMATA Norihito

Research FellowYAMASHITA Tsuyoshi

Contact Us

Center for International Law and Policy,Tohoku University


Katahira, Aoba-ku, Sendai, 980-8577, JAPAN
Center for International Law and Policy, Tohoku University