Kizuna, the Japanese for bond between people, was chosen as the word that summed up 2011

How Japanese traditions have helped – and hindered - disaster recovery

One year after the triple catastrophe which killed thousands and decimated a large area in north east Japan, hundreds of thousands are still homeless. This has not been because of a lack of will to spend the money on rebuilding, but more because of a society, which in the absence of clear rules, finds it difficult to come to decisions after unexpected events. Nor is there any lack of empathy with survivors. On the contrary, the Japanese tradition of kizuna, meaning bond or connection, is well in evidence.

WHEN disaster hit Japan on March 11, 2011, the world was struck by the people’s stoicism and determination to pull together.


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Dr. Stefan Lippert
On a social level, 930,000 people from all parts of the nation have been engaged in volunteer work in the three hardest-hit prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima
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