was founded in 1994 by Chalmers Johnson and Steven
C. Clemons to promote public education about
Japan, especially Japan's then growing significance
in Pacific Rim and world affairs. Despite the
name, JPRI has never focused exclusively on Japan.
Over the years it has published many works on
other parts of the Pacific Rim, ranging from
Australia, Burma, and China, to the two Koreas,
the United States, and various parts of Latin America.
During its first decade
JPRI was a member-based organization, and subscribing
members received a monthly publication. These mailings
were comprised of Working Papers, Critiques, Occasional Papers,
and books. Working Papers were basically research
papers, either free-standing or chapters from forthcoming
books or dissertations; Critiques shorter 'opinion'
pieces; Occasional Papers more historical works, memoirs,
or other 'think' pieces.
Books distributed free of charge to members included
Okinawa: Cold War Island, edited by Chalmers Johnson, along with
a number of important titles by George Hicks, Ivan
Hall, and others. In late 2003, JPRI switched to
internet publication and, since its web site is open
to all, no longer required membership.
From 2006 to 2012, JPRI was based at the USF Center for the Pacific Rim, which was founded by Dr. Barbara Bundy. In 2009 Chiho Sawada (who began his study of Japan and the Asia Pacific under Johnson and JPRI Board member John Dower) was appointed director.
Since 2013, the JPRI editorial office and archive have been hosted by the Asia Pacific Peace Studies Institute (APPSI) at Holy Names University in Oakland, California. JPRI continues its core activity of producing policy-relevant research and publication, but also, as it did in its early years, will actively sponsor conferences and workshops, public events, and service activities to foster dialogue and cooperation among scholars, government officials, journalists, business leaders, NGO activists, as well as the general public.