Susan J. Pharr

Director Emeritus

Professor of Government and Director, Program on U.S.-Japan Relations, Harvard University

Dr. Pharr is Edwin O. Reischauer Professor of Japanese Politics at Harvard, and is Director of its Program on U.S.-Japan Relations.  A member of the Harvard faculty since 1987, she has served as chair of the Government Department, Associate Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, and Director of the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies.  She is Secretary of the Board of Trustees of the Asia Foundation, is a Commissioner of the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission (a federal agency), is a member of the U.S. panel of the U.S.-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON),  is on the International Advisory Committee of the East-West Center, and is on the board of the U.S.-Japan Bridging Foundation.

Until 1986, Dr. Pharr was on the faculty of the Department of Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison. From 1985-87, on a leave from Wisconsin, she held the Japan Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington. She also served as a Senior Social Scientist with the Agency for International Development. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, she has been a visiting scholar or fellow in the Faculty of Law at the University of Tokyo and at Keio University, and at the Woodrow Wilson International Center of Scholars, the Brookings Institution, and St. Antony’s College, Oxford.

Her research interests include democratization and social change; civil society and nonprofit organizations; Japanese politics: political ethics and corruption; environmental politics; the role of the media in politics; international relations in East Asia; and the political economy of development.

Dr. Pharr received her Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University in 1975.