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In fiscal year 2014, the Japanese central government approved the establishment of The Research Center for Economic and Social Risks. Prescribed in the Hitotsubashi University Basic Regulations, this is the fourth formal research center at the Institute of Economic Research (IER).

In the past few years, we have encountered several serious macroeconomic shocks such as the Lehman Shock, Euro Crisis, and Great East Japan Earthquake. It is of great importance that we evaluate and prepare for potential serious risks to the Japanese economy.

In addition to unforeseeable risks such as natural disasters, Japan faces several anticipated risks, such as rapid aging and declining productivity, which are already being realized. Concerns about the sustainability of social welfare programs, the increasing number of irregular workers, and volatile asset prices may not be independent from such anticipated risks.

Our ultimate goal is to contribute toward building a society that is robust to large-scale economic risks. One of the important steps in this regard is to increase the number of policy makers skilled in empirical analysis. We plan to collaborate with several private and public research institutions to provide opportunities for joint research to young researchers. Young researchers are expected to learn the most advanced econometric techniques through on-the-job training.