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Report on Bhutan Seminar Series 2022 (Apr.2022)


Beginning in FY2021, the Global Collaboration Center is hosting regional research-based seminars to (1) learn about the Kingdom of Bhutan, which is located in South Asia, and (2) examine development policies and the situation of the country and region in light of these issues. Each seminar includes a film screening, a brief commentary by the presenter, and a question-and-answer session. This year’s seminar is also an approved project of the “Japan-Southwest Asia Exchange Year 2022” by Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

1st Seminar in the Bhutan Seminar Series 2022(2022.4.9)

Bhutanese cuisine, one of the world’s spiciest cuisines in the world, was introduced in the 1st seminar. After the seminar, the participants voluntarily participated in a discussion on more in-depth topics such as the differences in food culture between the East and West, the existence of a north-south divide in Bhutan, and the definition of "Ema Datshi", a typical and traditional Bhutanese cuisine.

About 70 people attended the seminar. Since the topic was “food culture”, which is easy to understand, the question-and-answer session was held in a relaxed manner. Here are some of the participants’ comments: “I learned Bhutanese food culture for the first time”, “It was interesting to hear about the comparison of food culture with neighboring cultures and the historical influences”.

  • phito1Commentary by Mr. Sudo (talk about Bhutanese cuisine)
  • phito2Markets in Thimphu

2nd Seminar in the Bhutan Seminar Series 2022(2022.4.23)

The 2nd seminar was held on “Food”. After screening of the film, Mr. Shin Suto, a researcher at the Japan Institute for Bhutan Studies, explained the characteristics and regional variations of Bhutanese cuisine, as well as the fish and buckwheat dishes shown in the film. After the seminar, the participants voluntarily participated in an hour and a half discussion.

About 65 people attended the seminar. Here are some of the participants’ comments: “I was surprised to learn that Bhutan has a food self-sufficiency rate of 50 to 70% despite the abundance of arable land”, “The contrasts between eastern and southern Bhutan were particularly interesting.”

  • photo3Commentary by Mr. Sudo (talk about fish food culture)
  • photo4Bhutanese buckwheat cuisines
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