The Australia-Japan Foundation (AJF) is pleased to announce the successful grant recipients for 2015-16 worth around $620,000 . In a message of congratulation the Murray McLean, AO Chair of the AJF Foundation  said: “On behalf of the AJF Board, I congratulate the successful applicants in the 2015-16 grant round.”

He noted that the high quality of applications received this year underlined the “depth of interest and strong relationship Australians have with the people of Japan.”
He also added that “over the past 40 years, the AJF has provided funding for thousands of Australians to initiate Japan-focused projects in business, education, arts, culture and media. This year’s grants, worth around $620,000 will enable 40 projects to be completed.”
The Foundation’s annual work program focuses on activities which increase understanding in both Japan and Australia of our shared interests and highlights the areas of excellence and expertise in each country. This has included teacher and student exchange programs between Japan and Australia.
The AJF is also pleased to announce three publication awards in honour of Sir Neil Currie, a former Australian Ambassador to Japan, for Japanese language publications about Australia.
The publications selected cover a spectrum of topics highlighting the breadth and longevity of the ties between Australia and Japan. The 2015-16 titles are: The Ocean Area Connecting Japan, Australia and Indonesia: Pearls, Trepang and Transborder Migrants; The Australian Childcare System and Care of Parents; and Tomitaro Fujii: Pearl Diver of the Torres Strait (publication of the Japanese translation).
Early this year the Australia-Japan Foundation supported the teaching of Australian Studies in Japan at the University of Tokyo. Leading Australian scholars Associate Professor Anna Johnston and Dr Maria Nugent had been appointed to the annual Visiting Professor in Australian Studies at the Centre for Pacific and American Studies at the University of Tokyo for 2014-15 and 2015-16.
Their areas of expertise, Australian literature and Indigenous studies, are of great interest to Japanese students and their appointments contribute enormously to the strengthening of ties between Australia and Japan. The selection process is organised by the International Australian Studies Association (InASA). Selection of the 2016-17 and 2017-18 Visiting Professors is currently underway.