from the Director
Welcome to the Japan Information
The Japan Information Center (JIC) was established in 1968 as the cultural, educational and public affairs arm of the Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco, with a primary mission of promoting a better understanding of Japan and its culture and deepening the friendship between Japan and the United States in central and northern California and the state of Nevada.
The JIC, along with the Consulate General chancery, is located in the Financial District of the City of San Francisco to serve the general public. The JIC provides, for example, a variety of information and publications on Japan; has a large collection of books, DVDs and CDs that users may check out; and sponsors a variety of events including lectures and cultural programs (please click here for details of our services). Also, the JIC distributes an e-magazine entitled "Japan NOW," which features articles on U.S.-Japan relations, the Consulate's activities and local Japan-related events.
The JIC has a public space where a selection of Japanese daily newspapers, magazines and other publications are available for visitors to read during their visit. The space is also used to host various art exhibitions with a Japan-related theme, featuring local artists, throughout the year. Those artists from the Bay Area, Northern California or Nevada who are interested in exhibiting their works of art related to Japan are welcome to inquire about the availability of our public/art space exhibit area for displaying their works, regardless of whether they are professional or amateur, Japanese or American.
Some of the information the JIC provides is also accessible through the Internet. Information regarding our various programs, services, and events can be found on our homepage and Facebook. Our e-magazine, Japan NOW (Northern California and Nevada edition), which provides the latest U.S.-Japan information and details regarding local Consulate events, can be subscribed to on our website by clicking here.
Since the arrival of the Kanrin Maru in San Francisco in 1860 with Japan's first diplomatic mission to the U.S., San Francisco has frequently played an important role at major turning points in the history of U.S.-Japan relations. The Consulate has recently commemorated such major milestones as the 50th anniversary of the signing in San Francisco of the 1951 Peace Treaty (in 2001) and the 150th anniversary of the establishment of U.S.-Japan relations (in 2003 and 2004). The Consulate General also participated in commemorating the centennial of two significant anniversaries related to U.S.-Japan relations (in 2006): the 100th anniversary of the Japan Society of Northern California, which has played an important role in promoting mutual understanding between our two countries; and the 100th anniversary of San Francisco's Japantown in its present location.
2010 marked the 150th anniversary of the arrival of the Kanrin Maru, the first Japanese naval ship that made the journey across the Pacific Ocean to the US mainland, as well as the first Japanese Embassy (an official delegation) sent by the Tokugawa Shogunate. In commemoration of this milestone event, the Kaiwo Maru, a Japanese training ship of the National Institute of Sea Training, a Japanese Coast Guard training ship and a Japan Maritime Self Defense Force training squadron sailed to San Francisco and facilitated U.S.-Japan exchange. 2010 also saw many events, such as the U.S.-Japan Grassroots Summit, and many others exploring various levels and areas of exchange. 2011 was the 60th anniversary for the signing of the San Francisco Peace Treaty, and the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan, which served as a chance to reflect with local community members and think about the future of U.S.-Japan relations. The deep historical connection between Japan, Northern California, and Nevada was realized through great support and donations during the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake of March 11th, which we recognized the following year, in March of 2012, through a Memorial Event.
Of the 97 Sister Cities between California and Japan (nearly one quarter of U.S.-Japan Sister City Agreements), 59 lie within our Consulate’s jurisdiction. This signifies the fact that exchange between Japan and the U.S. occurs on many different levels and various fields, creating a deep bond between these regions which can only grow with time. Here at the JIC, we strive to further mutual understanding and exchange between Japan, Northern California, and Nevada, and will continue to provide information regarding Japan, and promote exchange through various programs and events.
We look forward to serving your needs, and welcome questions, inquiries, comments and suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Director & Consul