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Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities


The Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities is awarded each year to individuals who have made original, distinguished contributions in research or criticism through publications that adopt a broad perspective on society and culture.

The Prize is awarded in four categories: Political Science and Economics, Literary and Art Criticism, Life and Society, and History and Civilization. Selection committees in each category recommend and select the winning individuals and works. Winners receive a plaque and three million yen.

Works selected for consideration will have been published in Japanese during the preceding calendar year. In particular, the selection committees seek individuals who are rising critics or researchers of considerable originality and future potential, and works that distinctively represent the author's views or emphasis. The candidate's other published works to date may also be taken into consideration in the selection process.

Since there are few prizes to honor achievements in criticism and research on a broad basis, an important role of the Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities is to showcase free-ranging criticism and research unconstrained by conventional categories.

A total of 379 people have been awarded the Prize from 1979, when it was established, through the 45th Prize in 2023. These individuals have won acclaim for innovative approaches to their subjects, for research at the boundaries of conventional scholarship, and for opening up new frontiers.

The 45th(2023) Prize Winners

Political Science and Economics
NameUnayama Takashi
AffiliationKyoto University
Title in English"Consumption Analysis in Contemporary Japan: Where we are now in life cycle theory"
Original Title『現代日本の消費分析 ─ ライフサイクル理論の現在地』
NameHigashijima Masaaki
AffiliationThe University of Tokyo
Title in English"The Dictator's Dilemma at the Ballot Box: Electoral Manipulation, Economic Maneuvering, and Political Order in Autocracies"
Original Title『民主主義を装う権威主義 ─ 世界化する選挙独裁とその論理』
Literary and Art Criticism
NameHishioka Kenji
AffiliationYamaguchi Prefectural University
Title in English"The Talented Ozu Hisatari: The Book Collection, Classical Studies, and Travel Writings of an Ise Merchant"
Original Title『大才子 小津久足 ─ 伊勢商人の蔵書・国学・紀行文』
NameWashitani Hana
AffiliationInternational Institute for Children's Literature, Osaka
Title in English"Princess and Homosocial: Skeptical Feminist Film Criticism"
Original Title『姫とホモソーシャル ─ 半信半疑のフェミニズム映画批評』
Life and Society
NameAbe Takuya
AffiliationAichi Shukutoku University
Title in English"Kohei Sugiura and the Golden Age of Phototypesetting: Optical Technology and Japanese Typography"
Original Title『杉浦康平と写植の時代 ─ 光学技術と日本語のデザイン』
NameOmata Rappo Hitomi
AffiliationKyoto University
Title in English"Japan as the Land of Martyrs: The Impact of Japanese Mission in Early Modern Europe"
Original Title『殉教の日本 ─ 近世ヨーロッパにおける宣教のレトリック』
History and Civilization
NameIkeda Maho
AffiliationHokkai-Gakuen University
Title in English"The Governing Assembly of the Capital City: Political Structure and Urban Redevelopment in Nineteenth-Century Tokyo"
Original Title『首都の議会 ─ 近代移行期東京の政治秩序と都市改造』
NameShinjoh Michihiko
AffiliationFerris University
Title in English"History of the Korean Peninsula: 600 Years of Political Strife and External Threats"
Original Title『朝鮮半島の歴史 ─ 政争と外患の六百年』