The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies (GSICS), Kobe University    Professor at GSICS and head of Polar Cooperation Research Center: Akiho Shibata

Applying international legal standards to realize the sustainable use of Arctic resources

Research grant

Project Description

This research aims to resolve a societal issue by determining whether it is possible to realize sustainable use of resources in the Arctic. Specifically, it looks at the fishing industry in the central Arctic ocean, LNG development in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug, and shipping in the Northeast Passage, using an assessment of the applicable international legal standards to identify key issues for sustainable development and propose methods with which to make sustainability more achievable. [No. R19-0019]

Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund FY2019 Research Grants List (PDF 508KB)

Relationship between People and Society
Grant year
FY2019 Research Grants
Grant term
2 years (April 2020 to March 2022)
Grant amount
Activity region
Arctic region
Discussing the potential for sustainable development of Arctic resources at an international symposium

Overview of the Organization

Professor at GSICS and head of Polar Cooperation Research Center: Akiho Shibata
Project organization
Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies (GSICS), Kobe University
Professor at GSICS and head of Polar Cooperation Research Center: Akiho Shibata
Specialist field: International law
Affiliated academic societies: Japanese Society of International Law, Japanese Association of World Law, American Society of International Law
1992 March: Graduated LLM, Kyoto University.
1993 May: LLM (international legal studies), New York University School of Law.
1995 March: Discontinued post-graduate studies at Kyoto University.
1995 to 2005: Associate Professor, Okayama University. During this period he was Advisor, Permanent Mission of Japan to the International Organizations in Geneva from 2001 to 2003.
2005 April: Professor, Kobe University GSICS (International Law). Concurrent roles have included:
2008 to 2010: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Global Environment Division, (Convention on Biological Diversity):
2009 to 2010: Visiting Fellow, Australian National University;
2013: Invited Professor, Grenoble UPMF.
2015 October onward: Head of Polar Cooperation Research Center (PCRC);
2020 June onward: Principal Investigator, International Legal Issues, Arctic Challenge for Sustainability II project (ArCS-II).
Research record
[Arctic-related papers within past two years]
  • Akiho Shibata, et al (Eds.), Emerging Legal Orders in the Arctic: The Role of Non-Arctic Actors (Routledge, 2019).
  • Edited by Osamu Inagaki and Akiho Shibata "Prospects for International Legal Discipline: Science, Oceans, Environment" (Toshindo,2018).
  • Akiho Shibata and Romain Chuffart, "Sustainability as Integration Principle: The Role of International Law in Arctic Resource Development", Polar Record (forthcoming, 2020).
  • Akiho Shibata, "Building Systems Under International Law" "Arctic people and Society: The potential for sustainable Development" (Hokkaido University Press, 2020).
WEB site