[APYLP x Asia 21 Joint Session]*1
Next Generation Leadership Shaping the Future of the Asia Pacific

This event now concluded. Report available here.



  • ***This event was held for fellows of APYLP participating programs ONLY.***
  • Date:
    Tuesday, October 30, 2018, 4:00-7:00 pm (Doors open at 3:30 pm)
  • Venue:
    Iwasaki Koyata Memorial Hall, International House of Japan
  • Moderator:
    Caroline Bouvier Kennedy (Trustee, Asia Society; former US Ambassador to Japan)
  • Panelists:
    Bernise Ang (Principal, Zeroth Labs)
    Arnel Casanova (Philippine Representative, AECOM Technology Corporation)
    Kanae Doi (Japan Director, Human Rights Watch)
    Eugene Yi (President, Cortico)
  • Fireside Chat:
    Shinjiro Koizumi (Member, House of Representatives)
    Josette Sheeran (President and CEO, Asia Society)
  • Co-organized by:
    Asia Society Japan
  • Supported by:
    United States-Japan Foundation, Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting Co., Ltd., MRA Foundation
  • Participating Programs:
    Asia Leadership Fellow Program (ALFP), Asia 21 Young Leaders Initiative, Asian Future Leaders Scholarship Program, Atsumi Scholarship Program, Japan-India Distinguished Visitors Program, Mike Mansfield Fellowship Program, Next Generation Fellows Program, Nitobe Leadership Program, United States-Japan Leadership Program (USJLP)
    For details
  • Language:
    English (without interpretation)
  • Admission:
    Free (Invitation only / Registration required: seating 120)
Who are the next generation leaders shaping the future of Japan and Asia? What does the world they are seeking to create look like? How is their leadership different from the previous generation? We are convening top next generation leaders from Japan and across Asia to discuss these issues. The discussion will be led by two leaders who exemplify public service in the international arena, Caroline Kennedy and Josette Sheeran.


◆ Moderator ◆

Caroline Kennedy (Trustee, Asia Society; Former U.S. Ambassador to Japan)
Caroline Kennedy was the first woman to serve as United States Ambassador to Japan. Her tenure from November 2013 to January 2017 was marked by the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II and the historic visits of President Obama to Hiroshima and Prime Minister Abe to Pearl Harbor. As Ambassador, Kennedy supported the economic empowerment of women and worked to increase student exchange between the United States and Japan. She strengthened cultural ties between countries through the International Poetry Exchange Project (IPEP), a program she co-founded that brought together high school students from New York City, Japan, and South Korea with the goal of promoting cross-cultural dialogue through the exchange of poetry. Kennedy is an attorney and the author/editor of eleven books on such subjects as law, civics, and poetry. From 2002 to 2013, Kennedy played a leading role in New York City school reform efforts, heading the Office of Strategic Partnerships and serving as Vice Chairwoman of the Fund for Public Schools, transforming the Fund into a system-wide vehicle for private support of public school reform, and helping to create the first K-12 arts curriculum funded by the private sector. Kennedy serves as Honorary President of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and is Co-Chair of the Senior Advisory Committee of the Harvard Institute of Politics. She is also a Director of the Boeing Company and a Trustee of the Asia Society.

◆ Panelists ◆

Bernise Ang (Principal, Zeroth Labs)
Bernise Ang is Principal at Zeroth Labs, a systems innovation lab which helps cities in developing countries make sense of urbanization challenges and prototype new public services to meet them. She had a previous corporate life in private equity and in M&A, and also founded Syinc, a youth development nonprofit, from which alums have gone on to become Forbes 30 Under 30 and Ashoka Fellows awardees. In international policy, she co-created processes for the development of civil society policy positions at the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat. Ms. Ang is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum (WEF) and adjunct faculty at the Singapore Management University on innovation methods.
Arnel Casanova (Philippine Representative, AECOM Technology Corporation)
Arnel Paciano Casanova is an expert in the fields of property law, urban planning and real estate and public finance; rising from the ranks to become the youngest President and Chief Executive Officer of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority. He was active in anti-corruption work and led the recovery of government lands now worth US$ 2 billion misappropriated by retired generals. He testified before the Feliciano Commission on the issue of military corruption as one of the causes of military mutiny in 2003. Aside from the wealth of his experience, Mr. Casanova teaches at the University of the Philippines College of Law and earned his Master of Public Administration in Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government as a Mason Fellow. He describes himself as a slum dweller who became a city-builder.
Kanae Doi (Japan Director, Human Rights Watch)
Kanae Doi is the Japan Director for Human Rights Watch. After passing Japan’s National Bar Examination in 1996 while still a student at the University of Tokyo, Ms. Doi went on to work as an attorney in Japan from 2000 to 2016, during which she championed the cause of refugees and urged revisions to the Refugee Recognition Act. She earned a master’s degree in International Studies from the New York University School of Law in 2006 and then passed the New York State Bar Examination in 2007. She assumed her current position at Human Rights Watch in September 2008.
Eugene Yi (President, Cortico)
Eugene Yi is co-founder and President of Cortico, a nonprofit rooted in the Laboratory for Social Machines within the MIT Media Lab that aims to foster a healthy public sphere. He led the product team for the Electome project at the MIT Media Lab that used machine learning analytics to track the horserace of ideas in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Previously, he was the Head of Asia Public Policy for Twitter and helped develop the company’s hyperlocal and global corporate social responsibility mission. Prior to joining Twitter, Mr. Yi worked for the U.S. Department of State at the embassy in Beijing as a Political Officer covering Internet freedom. He was an East Asia strategist and a Country Director for China and Korea in the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the Department of Defense. He received his B.A. and MPA from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.

◆ Fireside Chat ◆

Shinjiro Koizumi (Member, House of Representatives)
Shinjiro Koizumi was born in Kanagawa Prefecture in 1981 and after graduating from the College of Economics, Kanto Gakuin University, he went on to obtain an MA from the Graduate School of Arts and Science, Columbia University, in 2006. After working as a researcher at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), he changed careers to become a secretary to former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi in 2007. In August 2009, he was elected to the House of Representatives, and is now serving his fourth term. In September 2013, he became Parliamentary Vice-Minister of the Cabinet Office and Parliamentary Vice-Minister of the Reconstruction Agency. In October 2015, he became the Director, Agriculture and Forestry Division, LDP, and was involved in agricultural reform. Since August 2017, he has been Chief Deputy Secretary-General.
Josette Sheeran (President and CEO, Asia Society)
As president and CEO, Josette Sheeran is responsible for advancing the Asia Society’s global work in the fields of arts and culture, policy and business, and education. She also serves as a UN Special Envoy to Haiti. Ms. Sheeran is former vice chair of the World Economic Forum. She also led the World Food Programme (WFP) as executive director. Prior to this, she served as a diplomat and negotiator for the United States, including as U.S. Under-Secretary of State for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs. In 2011, Forbes named her the world’s 30th most powerful woman and Huffington Post recognized her as a “Game Changer.”

◆ Program Schedule (tentative) ◆

4:00 pm Opening Remarks
4:10-5:05 pm Panel Discussion
“Public Service: A Conversation with Asia 21 Fellows”

Caroline Bouvier Kennedy (Trustee, Asia Society; former US Ambassador to Japan)

Bernise Ang (Singapore)
Arnel Casanova (Philippines)
Kanae Doi (Japan)
Eugene Yi (USA)

5:15-5:55 pm Fireside Chat:
Shinjiro Koizumi (Member, House of Representatives)
Josette Sheeran (President and CEO, Asia Society)
6:00-7:00 pm Informal gathering among fellows with snacks and drinks
*1) APYLP connects participants of young leader programs across the region to work together to envisage a common future for this new world. I-House provides a “home in Japan” where young leaders across various programs and stakeholder groups can periodically gather to discuss and shape the future of the region. / The Asia 21 Young Leaders Initiative creates a network of diverse change-makers (under the age of 40), united by a shared commitment to shaping a brighter future for the Asia-Pacific region, and provides a catalytic platform where young leaders enrich each other’s endeavors.