In this fifth installment of our “Nitobe Fellows in Conversation” series, we interviewed Yoshimichi Sato (Professor and Dean, Faculty of Humanities, Kyoto University of Advanced Sciences; Professor, Graduate School of Arts and Letters, Tohoku University), who conducted overseas research at the University of Chicago, USA, as a Nitobe Fellow.
Social capital research is based on the idea that human relationships can have positive and negative effects. Sato says that his research on social capital, which he came across by chance at the University of Chicago during his overseas research, greatly influenced his research and life afterwards. Social capital has a positive effect that chance encounters can open up and enrich one’s life. On the other hand, it can also have a negative effect, as people can pull each other down and prevent the success and growth of others. Mr. Sato spoke in detail about the significance of building bridges between the social capitals of different groups in a society that is becoming increasingly “divided.
Please take a moment to listen to this interview and learn more about how each chance encounter has the potential to change your life.
#5 “Social Capital – The Possibility of Encounters and Connections”
Born in Tokyo in 1957. Professor and Dean, Faculty of Humanities, Kyoto University of Advanced Sciences and Professor, Graduate School of Letters, Tohoku University.
Sato completed his doctoral coursework at the Graduate School of Sociology at the University of Tokyo in 1987 and was awarded a doctorate in literature from Tohoku University in 1997.
He was a full-time lecturer and associate professor at Yokohama City University Faculty of Commerce, an associate professor at Tohoku University Faculty of Letters, a visiting scholar at the University of Chicago Department of Sociology, and a visiting scholar at Cornell University Department of Sociology before assuming his current position. He has also held visiting professorships at ZUMA (Germany), the University of Indonesia, the Institut National de la Recherche en Sciences Sociales (France), and the Institute of Statistical Mathematics of the Research Organization of Information and Systems. He has served as director, president, and section chair of the Japan Sociological Society, the Mathematical Sociology Society, the Tohoku Sociological Society, the Japan Society of Social Relations, the International Sociological Association, and the American Sociological Association.
His main publications include “Social Capital and Inequality: The Quantitative Sociology of Well-being” (co-editor, University of Tokyo Press, 2014), “Social Capital and Society: Frontiers of Research in Sociology Social Capital and Society: Frontiers of Research in Sociology” (editor, Minerva Shobo, 2018), “Stratification in Aging Society with Low Fertility 2: Stratification in the Middle of Life” (co-editor, University of Tokyo Press, 2021), “How AI will Change Society: From the Perspective of Social Capital and Inequality” (co-editor, University of Tokyo Press, 2014), “How AI will Change Society: From the Perspective of Social Capital and Inequality (co-edited, University of Tokyo Press, 2022).
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