Big Japan Pharma Payments Exposed

The Waseda Chronicle, Japan's first nonprofit investigative reporting center, unveiled a major project this week exposing nearly $245 million in payments by the pharmaceutical industry to the nation's medical doctors. At the center of the project is a public database, “Money for Docs,” which the reporting team pulled together despite barriers of cost and access put up by the industry. Included are payments made by 71 pharmaceutical firms. Japan's pharma industry is the world's third largest, after the US and China. Fees for "lectures" accounted for 84% of the payments, the team found.

Source: Waseda Chronicle

Posted on: January 15, 2019

Japanese Muckrakers Bring 250 for Training

Japanese journalists held their second national workshop on investigative reporting last month, drawing 250 journalists from across Japan, twice the number of last year. The second Journalism Practitioners' Forum (J-Forum) featured discussions on school scandals tied to prime minister, police surveillance of opposition political supporters, basic Excel skills, FOIA techniques, and fighting back against harassment of women journalists. The event was sponsored by GIJN member Waseda University Journalism School and The Journalism Discussion Group.

Source: J-Forum

Posted on: May 15, 2018

Waseda Hosts Asian Muckrakers in Tokyo

Japan's Waseda University hosts an international symposium on investigative journalism this June 4. “Investigative Journalism in Asia: Perspectives and Prospects" will feature representatives of four nonprofit newsrooms from Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan and Japan. Among the topics: investigative projects, sustainable models, and cross-border partnerships. Organized by Waseda University’s Institute for Journalism/Waseda Chronicle and the Committee to Protect Journalists in cooperation with GIJN.

Source: Waseda Chronicle

Posted on: May 23, 2017

Japan Sinks To New Low in Press Freedom

A perfect storm is descending on freedom of the press in Japan, reports Jeff Kingston, director of Asian Studies at that country's Temple University. Japan just sank to #72 in RSF's annual press freedom rankings, down from #11 in 2010. The UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of expression this week gave a press conference decrying censorship, weak legal protections, and media intimidation in Japan — effects of initiatives by the Shinzo Abe government. 

Source: Japan Times

Posted on: April 24, 2016