Associate Professor Petrice Flowers



(Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 2002)

I earned my Ph.D. in 2002 from the University of Minnesota where I specialized in International Relations (IR) and Comparative Politics with an emphasis on Japan; I also completed the coursework for the Ph.D. minor at the Center for Advanced Feminist Studies.  During my Ph.D. studies, received several grants, fellowships and awards including a MacArthur Fellowship that provided support for one year of my dissertation research; several Foreign Language Area Studies (FLAS) grants from the United States Department of Education that provided financial support for intensive language study at the University of Michigan’s Summer Language Institute and the University of Minnesota.  The Boren Fellowship provided support for intensive language study at the Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies in Yokohama Japan in 1998-99.

My major research and teaching interests include international norms, state identity, Japan’s civil society, human rights, Japan’s foreign relations, refugees and human trafficking. My book, Refugees, Women, and Weapons:  International Norm Adoption and Compliance in Japan (Stanford, 2009) explores how international norms affects domestic policy in Japan.  In this book, I examine the role of domestic advocates, state identity and domestic norms in Japan’s adoption of and compliance with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, the International Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the Optional Protocols, and the Agreement to Prohibit the Production, Use, Transfer and Stockpiling of Anti-personnel Landmines.  I am currently completing a book manuscript, Race, Gender and Movement:  Refugees and Trafficking in Japan and Korea.  In addition to the awards mentioned above, my research has been funded by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, the Social Science Research Council Migration Program, the Korea Research Foundation, and the Academy of Korean Studies. I regularly teach courses on both International Relations and Japan including:  Japan in International Relations, Japan’s Domestic Politics, International Relations Theory and Contemporary Human Rights Issues in Japan.

Recent Publications

“Immigrant Pathways, Places and Policy:  Koreatowns, Spatial Segregation and Transnational Neighborhoods,” with James H. Spencer and Jungmin Seo, forthcoming Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2012.

“Crossing Borders:  Transnationalism, Civil Society, and Post-9/11 Refugee Policy in Japan,” in Japanese Aid and the Construction of Global Development:  Inescapable Solutions.  Edited by David Leheny and Kay Warren,Routledge Press, 2010.

“Failure to Protect Refugees?  Domestic Institutions, International Organizations and Civil Society in Japan,” Journal of Japanese Studies 34:2 (2008):  333-361.

Courses Taught

In my years at UH, I've taught courses on both International Relations and Japan: Japan in International Relations (undergraduate), Japan's Domestic Politics (undergraduate), International Relations Theory (graduate.)


Curriculum Vitae