• 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

    YCAPS-ICAS Community Conversation (via Zoom)
    Apr 14, 2021 19:00-20:00 (Japan)
    the Zoom room will be open from 18:55

    YCAPS will host writer, artist, and food stylist, Hannah Kirshner, to discuss her latest book, Water, Wood & Wild Things, on “learning craft and cultivation in a Japanese mountain town.” Based in Yamanaka, in the Ishikawa prefecture, Hannah shares her adventurous tale off-the-beaten-path into rural Japan’s lesser-known treasures and cultural experiences.


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Getting to Know Japan Webinar (via Zoom)
    April 22, 2021 19:00 (Japan)

    Dr. Kyle Cleveland ( Temple University Japan) will lead a seminar on how conceptions of Japanese national identity have evolved as Japan has positioned itself in relation to international norms in a range of contemporary social and political issues.


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Sasebo Roundtable

    Central Hotel Sasebo
    April 21, 2021 17:30-19:30 (Japan)

    YCAPS members in Sasebo are invited to join YCAPS volunteer, Keiko Mitchell, for an informal dinner at the Central Hotel on Wednesday, April 21st, from 1730-1930. Our Roundtable series is designed to be a more personal, by-RSVP discussion where attendees connect to explore contemporary topics. To satisfy COVID-19 restrictions, the event is limited to 10 participants. First come, first serve.


    This discussion will serve as an introduction to YCAPS, its mission, and how it can serve to benefit the Sasebo community. YCAPS members and their friends are welcome to join this casual event. YCAPS will subsidize the cost and pay the first 1000Y for each attendee's meal. RSVPs should be submitted to keiko@ycaps.org with your name and affiliation.

    Rule of Law and Gray Zone Activities in the East and South China Seas

    Pacific Forum Maritime Discussion Series (via Zoom)
    April 27, 2021 13:30-15:00 (Japan)

    The PRC has been deploying "fishing vessels" to enforce its illegal claims in the South China Sea. Is Beijing doing the same in the East China Sea? How does the Quad deal with maritime militia and Coast Guard vessels deployed to "operationalize" claims and change the status quo of disputed features and maritime zones? Pacific Forum will be hosting a public Zoom session with Prof. Yurika Ishii of the National Defense Academy of Japan and Cmdr. Jon Odom of Marshall Center for Security Studies/US Navy to talk about the rule of law and gray zone activities in the East and South China Seas. Join virtually and ask your questions!


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Getting to Know Japan Webinar (via Zoom)
    April 27, 2021 10:00 (Japan)

    Professor Michael Cucek (Temple University Japan) will deliver an overview of Japanese national history until 1868 and the start of the Meiji Restoration, followed by Q&A and discussion.


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Getting to Know Japan Webinar (via Zoom)
    May 13, 2021 19:00 (Japan)

    Dr. Johnathan Clements will deliver an overview of the samurai in Japanese culture and history – the evolution of their arms and armor, their legends and battlefield traditions and the process by which a military clique seized control of a nation for hundreds of years. How much of today’s lore about Bushido, the "way of the warrior", is historically accurate?


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Getting to Know Japan Webinar Series (via Zoom)
    May 18, 2021 10:00 (Japan)

    Professor Thomas Lockley will tell the amazing story of Yasuke, a man from Africa who served and fought beside Japan’s infamous warlord Oda Nobunaga and became the first foreign-born samurai. When Nobunaga was assassinated, Yasuke stayed by his lord until the end, and is traditionally held to have rescued the severed head from capture. Afterward, the real Yasuke faded from history, but his legacy was revived as an anti-imperial icon in the 20th century and a media giant in the 21st.


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    Indo Pacific Maritime Hour Webinar Series (via Zoom)
    May 20, 2021 20:00 (Japan)

    YCAPS will host a discussion with Professor Captain Satya Pratama (Indonesian Coast Guard) and Commander Jay Tarriela (Philippine Coast Guard) as a part of its Indo Pacific Maritime Hour webinar series. The speakers will provide their perspective on why Southeast Asian Coast Guards have been growing in terms of missions, resources and prominence. They will also touch on the biggest challenges facing these forces and the range of maritime threats that they must address. These Coast Guards are engaged directly or indirectly with tasks that include sovereignty protection, maritime resource management, anti-piracy, counter-terrorism and other law enforcement activities. They will then take your questions.


    To join please use this link to register with Zoom. You will need the link and passcode provided in the confirmation email.

    See the event page for more details.

    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. Getting to Know Japan webinars offer introductory-level information about Japan's social and cultural landscape. 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. They are typically held in-person new US bases in Japan. 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.

    YCAPS University Chapter

    Cultivating the Careers of Motivated Students

    The University Chapter connects university students to enable them to exchange knowledge and ideas, to assist with their academic or professional growth, and to connect them with young professionals and world-class experts. University Chapter participants also assist events and projects organized by the YCAPS main body. Participants is open to any full-time university student (undergraduate and graduate students). If you are interested in joining University Chapter events, please join our private Facebook group.

    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 to 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.

    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!


    News & Announcements 

    Read our latest headlines


    Good Morning Books: For Families and Inspired By Military Service in the Western Pacific with...
    YCAPS' celebrated the Month of the Military Child by hosting a webinar with the creators of a...
    April 5, 2021
    YCAPS would like to welcome our first-ever paid employee, Michael Okamoto! As a program manager,...
    More Posts
  • 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.

  • Connect With Us 

    Be a part of our active Facebook community


  • Volunteer Leaders

    YCAPS and its services wouldn't be possible without our dedicated team of volunteers. From social media management, website planning, and webinar moderating, to event organization, research, and community outreach, our volunteers work tirelessly to ensure that we can continue to deliver world-class events that appeal to both experts and casual attendees.


    To learn more about our team members and their backgrounds, please visit our volunteer page.

  • 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.

  • Contact Us

    Find us on Social Media

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