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Research center director awarded medal by Japan

STANFORD -- Emperor Akihito of Japan has awarded the prestigious Medal of Honor, Shiju-hosho, to Ken-ichi Imai, director of research at the Stanford Japan Center in Kyoto.

The medal recognizes Imai's contributions to society through his work in economics. Imai also is a senior fellow of Stanford's Institute for International Studies, and a Stanford professor by courtesy of economics.

The Shiju-hosho, or "Medal of Honor with the Purple Ribbon," is one of six Japanese medals of honor that can be awarded by the emperor. The Purple Ribbon Medal honors someone whose contribution to society in science or the arts is considered outstanding by the Japanese Cabinet.

The award was publicly announced in Japan following a Cabinet counsel meeting on April 28. Emperor Akihito will preside over a May 15- 16 award ceremony in which Imai will receive the medal from the minister of education.

Imai, whose areas of expertise include technological change and innovation, corporate management, and industrial organization, accepted the position as the first director of research for the Stanford Japan Center in Kyoto in the fall of 1991. Previously, he taught at Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo, where he also served as director of the Institute of Business Research and as dean of the Graduate School of Commerce.

Imai has published numerous articles and books in English and Japanese, and has conducted economic research projects with several Stanford faculty over the past four years. He has received other Japanese awards for economics and social science research, including the Economist Prize (1969), the Nikkei Prize for Excellent Books in Economic Science (1976) and the Prize of Social Science Research in Telecommunications (1983).

Walter P. Falcon, director of the Institute for International Studies, said, "We at the Institute for International Studies are gratified that the value of Ken-ichi's many research and service contributions have been recognized in this way. On behalf of Stanford generally and IIS specifically, we are pleased to add our congratulations to those offered by the government of Japan."



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