• Enabling Professional Growth & Fostering Grassroots Connections

    with World-class Expertise


  • About

    We are a non-profit organization building connections and developing people in the Yokosuka Community

    Our Charter

    • The Yokosuka Council on Asia-Pacific Studies (YCAPS) promotes the study of strategic, diplomatic, and legal issues affecting the Asia-Pacific Region.
    • Capitalizing on Yokosuka City's unique pool of global expertise and rich maritime heritage, YCAPS builds networks between individuals, promotes dialogue, provides world-class educational opportunities, and enables professional mentorship.
    • All discussions are held in personal capacity of the participants and, unless specifically noted otherwise, all activities are off-the-record in nature. Comments made by members are non-attributable and made in the spirit of education and conceptual exchange. No comments or discussions presented during YCAPS meetings reflect any official government policy.
  • Join Us

    YCAPS wants you!

    We are a rapidly growing group taking aim at big

    issues impacting the Asia-Pacific Region


    If you'd like to join an event just RSVP and turn up. If you aren't sure and want more information, then drop us a line. We bring together a diverse group of individuals with different backgrounds and experiences to help us explore common challenges. Our members include students, young professionals, leaders at the top of their careers and retired experts. Our programs are designed to help everyone develop while building bridges between Yokosuka's thought communities.

  • Upcoming Events

    All YCAPS Events will be Virtual during the COVID-19 Pandemic

    The Myanmar Coup: Making Sense of Chaos

    YCAPS-JUMP Community Conversation Webinar (via Google Meets)

    The Myanmar Coup: Making Sense of Chaos

    Weds, Mar. 3, 2021 from 18:00-19:30 (Japan)

    The Google Meet room will open at 17:55


    Join YCAPS for the next iteration of our webinar series exploring interesting and contemporary topics relevant to our base communities and beyond.


    On February 1, the Myanmar military seized power in the country’s third coup since independence from Britain in 1948. Led by Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, military forces arrested State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint. Civil unrest and protests erupted after internet access was shut down and social media platforms like Facebook were restricted.


    As the international community starts to respond, some question whether sanctions will be enough.


    The Biden Administration swiftly imposed sanctions on military leaders and announced it would block the Myanmar government’s access to a $1 billion fund it has in the U.S. The EU has extended an embargo on arms and other equipment, and Japanese companies that have invested heavily in the country are mulling whether to halt operations. However, some worry that a harsh response from democracies could push Myanmar further into China’s orbit.


    With the situation developing every day and limited time to act, it is paramount that conditions in the country are clearly understood. We are pleased to be joined by three expert speakers who will provide their views and insight on the potential causes, outcomes, and impact of this rapidly developing situation.


    To join please go to: https://meet.google.com/gkr-fved-tqp

    No access code is required.


    Amara Thiha is a Research Director at Myanmar Institute for Peace and Security. He is experienced in ceasefire negotiations, ceasefire implementation and joint ceasefire monitoring mechanism. Involved in Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) negotiation process from day-1 and core staff member to setup the Joint Ceasefire Monitoring Mechanism (JMC) in Myanmar. Working on Security Sector Development and Modification. Leading China Research Desk.


    Gwen Robinson is editor-at-large of Nikkei Asia, a journal of Asian affairs, and is senior fellow at the Institute of Security and International Studies at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, where she focuses on regional economic and security issues. She was previously a senior correspondent and editor with the Financial Times in Europe, Asia and the US (1995-2013), most recently as Bangkok bureau chief covering Southeast Asia (2011-14). She is also president of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand.


    Romain Caillaud is a risk and reputation management consultant with more than a decade of experience providing public affairs and strategic intelligence services to corporations, law firms and nonprofits in Japan and Southeast Asia. Currently located in Japan, Romain was based prior in Singapore and in Myanmar, and is originally from France. He is the principal of Tokyo-based advisory firm Strategic Intelligence & Public Affairs Partners, and associate fellow in the Myanmar Studies Program at Singapore's ISEAS - Yusof Ishak Institute, and a member of the Japan Committee of the Temple University Law School Compliance Advisory Board. Romain first lived in Myanmar in 2006 as an intern analyst at the French Embassy, and from 2008 to 2015 when he studied Burmese at Yangon University of Foreign Languages, established the Myanmar office of a Southeast Asia-focused public affairs firm, and acted as president of the French-Myanmar Chamber of Commerce. Romain is currently advising clients including from Japan on their responses to the political situation in Myanmar.


    Webinar price: Free
    Format: Off-the-Record
    Co-Sponsors: Japan-US Military Program (JUMP), Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS).
    Moderator: Stephen Nagy, YCAPS Director of Policy Research
    Please register by RSVP info@ycaps.org. RSVP not required, but helpful for organizers.

    Indo Pacific Maritime Hour (via Google Meet)

    Thursday, 9 March 2021 at 20:00 to 21:00 (Japan)

    The Google Meet room will be open from 19:55

    The year 2020 was characterized by the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, which correlated with reports of rising traditional and non-traditional maritime security threats to the Indo Pacific. This sharp rise in incidents point to the need to build maritime domain awareness (MDA) and strengthen the region’s information-sharing structures. This panel of experts seeks to explore the MDA regional landscape and investigate efforts in sharing and incorporating information at both the regional and national level. By reflecting on shared challenges and opportunities encountered in sharing information across the Andaman Sea, Straits of Malacca and Singapore, and the Sulu and Celebes Seas, this panel seeks to paint a broad picture of MDA development in the Indo Pacific.


    To join please go to: https://meet.google.com/gkr-fved-tqp

    No access code is required.


    Format: This event will be off-the-record. Because of a strict 1 hour time constraint, priority will be given to questions submitted in advance. Please send yours to info@ycaps.org.


    Blake Herzinger is an Indo-Pacific policy specialist and U.S. Navy Reserve officer. He spent nearly a decade in active service with the U.S. Navy as an intelligence officer, with experience in the Middle East and across the Indo-Pacific. He is broadly interested in security assistance dynamics and Seapower. His analysis has been published in Foreign Policy, War on the Rocks, The Diplomat, and ASPI's The Strategist. He's lived in Singapore since 2013 and is a graduate of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.


    Prakash Gopal is a PhD candidate at the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS), University of Wollongong, Australia since July 2018. As a former Indian naval officer, he has significant experience in maritime security operations in the Indo-Pacific, and in maritime policy/strategy formulation. He has served on a range of frontline ships as a surface warfare officer, and has commanded an anti-submarine corvette based at Mumbai. In the latter part of his naval career, Prakash was involved in policy formulation as a Joint Director at the Indian naval headquarters, and went on to serve as naval advisor to the head of the Indian Coast Guard. Prior to his transition out of the navy, he was a research fellow at the National Maritime Foundation, New Delhi from 2016-18, and visiting faculty at the Foreign Services Institute of India. His primary research interests lie in India’s maritime security imperatives, international maritime cooperation and maritime domain awareness in the Indo-Pacific. He is an alumnus of the Australian Command and Staff College, Canberra, and has Master degrees in both science and humanities.


    Webinar Cost: Free of charge

    Format: Off-the-Record

    Moderator: Dr. Asyura Salleh

    Please register by RSVP to info@ycaps.org. RSVP not required, but helpful for organizers.


    The 2011 Earthquake, Tsunami and Fukushima Nuclear Crisis: Understanding What Happened 10 Years Ago and Why it Matters Today

    YCAPS-JUMP Community Conversation Webinar (via Google Meets)

    Wednesday, 10 March 2021 at 19:00 to 2030 (Japan)


    10 years after the 3/11 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis the memories of destruction, the withering judgement of the government’s inept response, the damage to national authority and the readiness of the US-Japan Alliance to provide support in this time of national crisis are now baked into the Japanese cultural memory. The legacy of lessons learned and the horrible experiences that survivors endured continues to have a significant influence on political decisions and the decision-making process of the US-Japan Alliance. Dr. Kyle Cleveland and Martin Fackler are experts who worked through the disaster and have devoted the last 10 years to understanding what happened and what it all means for Japan. Please join them as they reflect on their experiences and findings.


    To join please go to: https://meet.google.com/gkr-fved-tqp

    No access code is required.


    Kyle Cleveland is Associate Professor of Sociology at Temple University’s Japan Campus (TUJ), where he is Faculty Director of Study Abroad and Honors Programming. In this capacity he was involved in the university’s crisis management during the 3.11 disasters, serving as a liaison to U.S. - based study abroad providers, and at the height of the nuclear crisis chaperoned an emergency evacuation flight out of Japan with international students. He is the founding director of the university's Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS), under whose auspices he has organized a series of lectures and symposia related to the Fukushima nuclear crisis, supervised research interns and led a disaster management study group comprised of students, scholars, journalists and nuclear experts. Since the 3.11 Tohoku disasters, he has done extensive ethnographic fieldwork in Fukushima, interviewing nuclear refugees, prefectural mayors, military officials, anti-nuclear activists and nuclear industry experts. He is writing a book on the political dimensions of radiation assessment in the Fukushima nuclear crisis, examining how foreign governments in Japan responded to the crisis. He is co-editor (with Scott Knowles and Ryuma Shineha of the book “Legacies of Fukushima: 3/11 in Context,” published by University of Pennsylvania Press (forthcoming in May of 2021).


    Martin Fackler has been a journalist in Asia for two decades, working most recently as Assistant Asia Editor at The New York Times managing the paper’s coverage of China. He was a correspondent at The New York Times for ten years, serving as Tokyo bureau chief from 2009 to 2015. In 2012, he led a team that was named finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for investigative stories into the Fukushima nuclear disaster that the prize committee said offered a “powerful exploration of serious mistakes concealed by authorities in Japan.” He has also worked in Shanghai, Beijing and Tokyo for The Wall Street Journal, The Far Eastern Economic Review, The Associated Press and Bloomberg News. From 2015-17, he was Journalist-in-Residence at the Asia Pacific Initiative, a Tokyo-based think tank. Fackler is author or co-author of 11 books in Japanese, including the bestseller Credibility Lost: The Crisis in Japanese Newspaper Journalism after Fukushima (2012). In English, he edited Reinventing Japan: New Directions in Global Leadership (2018). He grew up in Georgia, and holds degrees from Dartmouth College, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of California, Berkeley.


    Webinar Cost: Free of charge
    Co-sponsors: Japan-US Military Program (JUMP), Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS)
    Moderator: John Bradford, YCAPS Executive Director
    Please register by RSVP to info@ycaps.org. RSVP not required, but helpful for organizers.

    Remembering March 11, 2011: Looking Back, Looking Forward

    Special Partnership Event

    Thursday, 11 March 2021 at 08:00 to 09:30 (Japan)


    Please join YCAPS, the U.S.-Japan Council and other U.S.-Japan-related organizations for a special event to commemorate the 10-year anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011. This virtual event will symbolize the United States standing together in solidarity with Japan and underscore the importance of our alliance, friendship and shared values.


    Registration link -- https://usjapancouncil-org.zoom.us/.../WN...



    • Opening Remarks from Laura Winthrop Abbot, Executive Vice President, U.S.-Japan Council
    • Remarks from Koji Tomita, Japanese Ambassador to the United States
    • Panel Discussion: Tohoku, Fukushima, Crisis Management & Recovery
      • Moderator: Karen Kelley, Senior Foreign Service Officer and East Asia Bureau Senior Advisor for Diversity and Inclusion, U.S. Department of State
      • John V. Roos, United States Ambassador to Japan, 2009-2013
      • Ichiro Fujisaki, Japanese Ambassador to the United States, 2008-2012
    • Remarks from Futoshi Toba, Mayor, City of Rikuzentakata, Iwate Prefecture, 2011-present
    • Remarks from Ryota Konno, TOMODACHI Alumni Speaker from Tohoku
    • Remarks from Joshua Walker, President, Japan Society
    • Panel Discussion: The Future of the U.S.-Japan Relationship
      • Co-Moderator: Frank Jannuzi, President and CEO, The Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation
      • Co-Moderator: Paige Cottingham-Streater, Secretary-General, U.S. CULCON Panel & Executive Director, Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission
      • Caroline Kennedy, United States Ambassador to Japan, 2013-2017
      • Kenichiro Sasae, Japanese Ambassador to the United States, 2012-2018
      • Shinsuke Sugiyama, Japanese Ambassador to the United States, 2018-2021
      • Thomas Schieffer, United States Ambassador to Japan, 2005-2009
    • Remarks from Miyu Sugita, TOMODACHI Alumni Speaker Speaker from Tohoku
    • Remarks from Ryozo Kato, Japanese Ambassador to the United States, 2001-2008
    • Remarks from William Hagerty, U.S. Ambassador to Japan, 2017-2019
    • Closing Remarks from Suzanne Basalla, President & CEO, U.S.-Japan Council
    • 3/11 Remembrances from U.S.-Japan Grassroots Organizations 

    Have a look at our blog or Facebook events site to learn more about past YCAPS events.

  • Professional Development Programs

    YCAPS is committed to supporting the personal and professional development of our members

    Network Building

    Meet People with Shared Interests and Common Ambitions

    YCAPS events are organized on the principal that who you meet is as important as what you learn. Therefore seminars and professional development experiences typically include a social portion where members can interact on a personal level with the world-class facilitators as well as the other participants. The events have proven to be fantastic opportunities to find mentors and develop peer-to-peer support networks.

    Open Seminar Series

    Learn from World-class Experts in a Relaxed Setting

    YCAPS open seminars feature leading experts who come from around the world to share their perspectives with our participants. Open to the public, the setting is community-oriented relaxed, accessible and professional. The Community Conversation series highlights topics that are of immediate interest to the base-hosting communities in Japan. These seminars are specifically designed to be applicable to all levels of expertise, from curious students to professionals working in that field. Indo-Pacific Maritime Hour events are more technical in nature. These interactive online discussions engage regional practitioners directly involved in maritime security to shed light on maritime issues that have significant implications on regional stability in the Indo-Pacific.

    YCAPS members at an important security conference

    Mongolia Connect

    Strengthening grassroots community connections for the common good.

    The YCAPS Mongolia Connect program creates opportunities for Americans, Japanese, and Mongolians to establish international friendships, develop intercultural leadership skills, and learn about issues impacting the greater international community. The program's events mix of social and educational experiences, language lessons, and opportunities to serve others in a unique and impactful way, through empowering and connecting these three countries communities, YCAPS seeks to create lasting impacts and sustainable people to people relationships.

    Writers' Circle

    Become a YCAPS writer

    The YCAPS Writers' Circle is a peer-to-peer network that supports professional writing throughout the process from idea to publication. Some of our members are professional editors or experienced authors who have published many books and articles. Others are aspiring to see their first piece in print. If you would like to get involved to get some advice regarding outlets and audiences, receive feedback on a draft manuscript, or to help others on their writing projects, email the Writers' Circle. We'll find you partners that suit your needs!

    YCAPS Roundtables

    Informed Small-group Dinner Discussions

    YCAPS members gather in small groups to discuss timely topics in a lively social atmosphere. Each roundtable is facilitated by a specialist who provides read-ahead materials to enable those attending to dive right into the discussion even before the food arrives. Invitations are shared with YCAPS members and those on our email list.

    YCAPS Afloat

    Supporting U.S. Navy Sailors at sea and their commands

    YCAPS Afloat directly supports U.S. miltary personnel in their efforts to expand their regional knowledge and strategic thinking while deployed and during port visits throughout the Indo-Pacific. Working in alignment with commands’ leadership and/or Morale, Welfare & Recreation (MWR) programs, YCAPS Afloat provides information and other resources or, when there are sufficient interested personnel, establishes a YCAPS chapter on board specific ships. If you are interested in receiving resources or establishing a YCAPS Afloat chapter, please send us an email get in touch.

    YCAPS members at an important security conference

    Fellowships, Scholarships, and Conferences

    YCAPS has formal and informal relationships with many organizations that sponsor a wide range of professional development programs. These include university scholarships, fellowships, internships, travel grants, and conferences. If some cases, YCAPS members have opportunities for priority placement in these programs. In other cases, YCAPS volunteers are available to advise on placement and coach applications. Download the guide or contact us for more information.

  • News & Announcements

    Read our latest headlines

  • Connect With Us

    Be a part of our active Facebook community

  • Our Partners

    YCAPS partners with other organizations to deliver world-class programming

    YCAPS has an active partnership with the Japan-U.S. Military Program (JUMP) based on our common objectives and shared values. The most tangible manifestation of this partnership is the YCAPS-JUMP Seminar & Professional Development Program Series which provides opportunities for members of the U.S. military community in Yokosuka to develop professional networks with strategic thinkers from across Greater Tokyo and learn from world-class experts.

    YCAPS and TUJ's Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS) both serve as centers of gravity for professional development and advanced thinking on issues related to Asian politics, society, and economics. Because our regular event venues are about 90 minutes from each other, we share some audience members while serving different core communities. YCAPS and ICAS take advantage of this situation to regularly co-sponsor events.

    The Pacific Forum is a non-profit, foreign policy research institute based in Honolulu, Hawaii. YCAPS collaborates with the Pacific Forum to gather regional perspectives and disseminating findings and recommendations to opinion leaders, governments, and publics. We have co-sponsored public seminars, published collaborative reports, and jointly delivered the online Maritime Discussion Series.

  • Volunteer Leaders

    The team that keeps YCAPS on track and moving forward

    Executive Director




    Vice President



    Director for Public Promotion



    Director for Policy Research



    Director for University Engagement



    Director for Southeast Asia Programs



    Director for Information Technology & Business Relations

    Director for Community Relations





  • Advisors

    Senior Advisor

    Special Advisor for Education & Policy

    Dr. Asyura Salleh​

    Special Advisor of Maritime Security

    Special Advisor for Government Affairs

    Special Advisor for Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy

  • Support

    YCAPS is an all-volunteer organization, but we do need funds to deliver our programming

    Your Financial Support is Appreciated

    Make a Donation

    YCAPS volunteers do not accept salaries or any sort of material compensation. However, we cannot deliver programs and events without funding. Internet services, advertising, consumables at our receptions, and tokens of appreciation for our speakers are among the largest costs. Partnerships with like-minded organizations and donations in kind from supporting businesses are a tremendous help, but more funds enable us to do more for our community. Follow this link to donate. Your donations are very much appreciated. YCAPS is 501(c)3 organization and donations are deductible from US income taxes.

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