Mari KOGISO | UTokyo D&I Support Messages

October 12, 2022

― UTokyo D&I Campaign 2022 ―

The University of Tokyo has launched a campaign aimed at promoting diversity and inclusion on campus, and making the university a place where people from diverse backgrounds can thrive. The initiative, called UTokyo D&I Campaign 2022, started in March 2022. In this series, we present messages of support we received from individuals who endorse our D&I initiatives.

Support Messages

Mari KOGISO, Co-CEO, SDG Impact Japan

A Chinese American friend once told me, “Once you are cognizant of it, diversity becomes something that you can’t live without, like the air we breathe.” Looking back, I feel the message my friend was conveying is that people can only be themselves in a society where diversity is widely accepted.

It is not easy, however, to realize diversity and an environment that is fair and just. I used to work for the World Bank, an organization that constantly was making great efforts to achieve ethnic and gender balance. Surely, even greater efforts are needed to promote diversity in an ethnically homogeneous, island country like Japan. But I believe the benefits that diversity brings far outweigh those efforts.

I am extremely pleased that the University of Tokyo is actively engaging in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion. I see the promotion of gender diversity as the initial touchstone for achieving greater diversity in Japanese society. I sincerely hope that UTokyo will exercise leadership in this area, and I genuinely look forward to seeing the kinds of new ideas and inspirations spawned by the diverse knowledge, experiences and conversations at the university.

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