French Forces challenges in the Indo-Pacific

April 11, 2023


Type Lecture
Intended for General public / Enrolled students / International students / Alumni / Companies / University students / Academic and Administrative Staff
Date(s) April 19, 2023 10:30 — 11:45
Location Hongo Area Campus
Venue SMBC Hall, 4th floor, International Academic Research Building
Entrance Fee No charge
Registration Method Advance registration required
Please register here.
Registration Period April 10, 2023 — April 19, 2023
Contact graspp_eventinfo(at)
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SCERU, alongside the Graduate School of Public Policy (GraSPP), will hold a public seminar with Rear-Admiral Geoffroy d’Andigné, as the guest speaker. This event will have as discussants Captain Keitaro Ushirogata, Senior Research Fellow from JMSDF Command and Staff College, and Dr. Yee Kuang Heng, Professor of GraSPP.

The Joint Commander of Armed Forces in French Polynesia, Rear-Admiral Geoffroy d’Andigné, will give a lecture on “French Forces challenges in the Indo-Pacific” on 19 April, from 10h30 at the University of Tokyo. As a nation of the Indopacific, with territories, people and permanently stationed armed forces, France is an active regional defense and security stakeholder, contributing to preserving stability. RADM d’Andigné will lay out how France responsibly defends its sovereign interests in the multilateral rules-based order it promotes, detailing the means, main missions, areas of deployments, and military cooperation ways of the French Forces in the Pacific.

Director Chiyuki Aoi will chair the seminar with an opening address from the Dean of GraSPP, Professor Keisuke Iida.

Opening remarks by: 
Dr. Keisuke Iida, Dean, and Professor at GraSPP

Speech by: 
Rear Admiral Geoffroy d’Andigné, Commander of the Armed Forces in French Polynesia, Commander of the Pacific Ocean and French Polynesian maritime zones, Commander of the Pacific Experimental Center, Commander of the French Polynesian Defense Base

Discussions with:
Captain Keitaro Ushirogata, Senior Research Fellow, JMSDF Command and Staff College
Dr. Yee Kuang Heng, Professor at GraSPP

Dr. Chiyuki Aoi, Professor GraSPP/SCERU)

About the Guest Speaker:
Rear Admiral Geoffroy d’Andigné is Commander of the Armed Forces in French Polynesia, Commander of the Pacific Ocean and French Polynesian maritime zones, Commander of the Pacific Experimental Center, and Commander of the French Polynesian Defense Base. He is an officer of the Legion of Honor and the National Order of Merit.
He studied at the Ecole Navale and the Ecole de Guerre. He served on the aviso (sloop) Commandant Bory in the Red Sea ARTIMON operation of 1991 and conducted operations in the Mediterranean aboard the SNA Améthyste. Then he took part in the MEDOR and MYRRHE 2000 missions in the Indian Ocean aboard the frigate Tourville, before taking command of the aviso Lieutenant of vessel Lavallée which was involved in the CORYMBE mission in the Gulf of Guinea in 2003. His subsequent career includes Head of the navy’s BERYX operation cell at the CPCO following the tsunami in Sumatra, Head of the “studies” section of the “fleet crews and port sailors” office of the Navy’s military personnel management(2006), Director of Instruction on the helicopter carrier Jeanne d’Arc (2008 to 2010), participation in the ATALANTA mission, Chief of Staff of the Maritime Prefect of Brest (2010, including when the TK Bremen grounded in Erdeven), Commander of the anti-submarine frigate La Motte-Picquet (2012-2014) to lead three operations in support of dissuasion, Auditor at the NATO Defense College in Rome, and various leading positions of the Armed Forces General Staff (since 2015). He worked in particular on the military programming law and on the modernization of the Armed Forces Ministry. In 2021, he joined the naval staff as deputy “finance and support” force preparation officer and was appointed to the current position in August 2022.

Captain Keitaro Ushirogata is Senior Research Fellow, Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) Command and Staff College. His major publications include Kaiyo-Senryakuron, in Japanese(Comparative Analysis of Maritime Military Strategies -Area Denial, Sea Control, and Power Projection)(2019) and “Ousyu to Asia ni okeru kaku no shikiichi”, in Japanese (The Difference of Nuclear Threshold between Europe and Asia -Gedanken Experiment as to Non-Strategic Nuclear Weapons) (Co-authored, 2023), edited by Iwama Yoko,  Kakukyoyu no Genjitsu -NATO no keiken to Nihon (The Reality of Nuclear Sharing Arrangement -NATO’s Experience and Japan). He obtained his bachelor’s degree in Social Studies from National Defense Academy and earned MA in Policy Studies(2014) and Ph.D. in International Relations(2017) from GRIPS. In JMSDF, he served as Operations Staff at Head Quarter Training Squadron, Navigation Officer of JS Mineyuki, Navigation Officer of JS Atago, Operations Staff at Headquarter Escort Fleet Force, Researcher at JMSDF Command and Staff College and Deputy Counsellor at the National Ocean Policy Secretariat, Cabinet Office, Government of Japan.

Dr. Yee Kuang HENG is a Professor at the Graduate School of Public Policy, The University of Tokyo. After completing his BSc (First Class Hons) and Ph.D. in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, Dr. Heng held faculty posts lecturing at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland; the University of St Andrews in Scotland, and the National University of Singapore. In 2022, he was a Senior Academic Visitor at the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Study of Existential Risk. Current research interests include future ecosystems and existential risks; UK-Japan defense cooperation, and more broadly Japan’s military exercises with European powers in the Indo-Pacific. Recent publications include “UK-Japan military exercises and mutual strategic reassurance”, Defence Studies (2021); and “Japan’s significance for the United Kingdom’s shaping ambitions in the Indo-Pacific”, East Asian Policy (2022).
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