Posts Tagged ‘Japan’

Mental health is a significant factor for the Japanese youth phenomenon of prolonged social isolation

December 6, 2011

General condition of hikikomori (prolonged social withdrawal) in Japan: Psychiatric diagnosis and outcome in mental health welfare centres

From International Journal of Social Psychiatry

The issue of hikikomori (prolonged social withdrawal) among Japanese youth has attracted attention from interna­tional experts. According to the epidemiology of hikikomori in a community population, a total of 1.2% had experienced the phenomenon in their lifetime. Many people suffer from hikikomori in Japan.  For the first time this research analyzed the psychiatric background of sufferers whereas previous studies examined the unique social and cultural factors contributing to this phenomenon of social isolation. The participants in this study who sought help during the consultation and support process were classified as the ‘help-seeking group’. A third of subjects within this group were diagnosed with mental health conditions ranging between schizophrenia, mood disorders and anxiety disorders and this group needed pharmacotherapy. Other subjects were diagnosed with personality disorders or pervasive developmental disorders and they mainly needed psycho-social support. This study confirms that hikikomori is more than a social-cultural issue, and inclusion of mental health problems and mental disorders is therefore necessary. There is little doubt that sufferers are much worse if they do not seek help.

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Fukushima in Focus: A collection of coverage

March 31, 2011

From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The Bulletin publishes a collection of analysis and opinion pieces from the world’s top experts; it aggregates these writings to create a valuable resource for readers.

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Do the benefits of nuclear power outweigh the risks?: A time for Japan to review its policies?

March 23, 2011

The Challenge of Climate Change and Energy Policies for Building a Sustainable Society in Japan

From Organization & Environment 

In response to last week’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the role and safety risks of nuclear power are being reassessed globally. The 1990s witnessed an unprecedented recognition that environmental problems were occurring at a global level. Demonstrating Japan’s commitment to the Kyoto Protocol it switched from fossil fuels to nuclear power as its primary energy source. Nuclear power has become central to its climate change and energy policies. The shift to secure increasing energy demand instead of reducing energy consumption has been widely criticised. Through an in-depth analysis of Japan’s climate change policy, this study assesses to what extent Japan has succeeded in environmental reforms without generating other environmental impacts to provide insight into this debate. Are the recent devastating events in Japan a warning to review its nuclear policies?

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Gorbachev’s lessons from Chernobyl are valuable in light of Japan’s nuclear crisis

March 18, 2011

Chernobyl 25 years later: Many lessons learned 

From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Dramatic events over the last week have produced heartbreaking images from Japan as its people face unimaginable adversity. In the wake of an earthquake of historic proportions, a tsunami of biblical scale and now potentially a nuclear emergency of terrifying magnitude, the ripples of fear span the globe. Natural disaster has collided with manmade hazard and this may prompt a full-scale nuclear meltdown. Many governments on the brink of a nuclear rebirth have been forced to reassess their nuclear strategy. Germany has already shut down some nuclear plants while it reconsiders its approach.

In a piece recently featured on SAGE Insight, we highlight again this timely essay from the former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, contributed to a special issue – Chernobyl 25 years later where he looks back at the catastrophic accident in 1986 at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in Ukraine and writes how, two and a half decades later, the nuclear accident offers many lessons for preventing, managing, and recovering from such a horrible event.

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Gorbachev reflects on lessons learned from the Chernobyl disaster

March 3, 2011

Chernobyl 25 years later: Many lessons learned 

From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev contributes this essay to the special issue – Chernobyl: 25 years later where he looks back at the catastrophic accident in 1986 at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in Ukraine and writes how, two and a half decades later, the nuclear accident offers many lessons for preventing, managing, and recovering from such a horrible event – he also writes about key issues that must be addressed for the further development of nuclear power.

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