Senior Visiting Professor of Law and Senior Director of the East Asian Legal Studies Program


Professor Setsuo Miyazawa is a legal sociologist who received LL.B., LL.M., and S.J.D. from Hokkaido University and M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in sociology from Yale. He has been a full-time faculty member at Hokkaido University, Kobe University, Waseda University, Omiya Law School, and Aoyama Gakuin University in Japan before reaching mandatory retirement at Aoyama Gakuin in 2016. He has also taught as a visiting professor at the law schools of York University (Canada), the University of Washington, Harvard, UC Berkeley, UCLA, NYU, the University of Hawaii, the University of Pennsylvania, and Fordham. His first visit to Hastings was in 2008 and teaches at Hastings in the fall and serves as the Senior Director of the East Asian Legal Studies Program established in 2015. He has also organized an annual symposium on Japanese law at Hastings since 2012.

Professor Miyazawa has a wide range of research interests, including police and criminal justice, legal ethics and public interest lawyering, legal education, and corporate legal practice; he received his doctoral degree in Japan with a study on police, while receiving his American doctoral degree with a study on corporate legal departments. He has published or edited more than a dozen books in Japanese and English. His first English book, Policing in Japan (SUNY Press, 1992), received the 1993 Distinguished Book Award of the Division of International Criminology of the American Society of Criminology. He has been highly active in the promotion of judicial reform in Japan, where he was one of the most prominent proponents of the introduction of the American-style graduate professional law schools. He has also been active in the Law and Society Association (LSA) in the US, twice serving on its Board of Trustees. He co-founded the Collaborative Research Network 33 in East Asian Law and Society in the LSA in 2008 and received the International Scholarship Prize from the LSA in 2014. He co-founded the Section on East Asian Law and Society in the AALS in 2015 and the Asian Law and Society Association (ALSA) in 2016. He was the founding President of the ALSA in 2016 and 2017. The Legal Process in Contemporary Japan: A Festschrift in Honor of Professor Setsuo Miyazawa’s 70th Birthday was published in 2017 in two volumes with more than 70 articles in both Japanese and English. He is currently the President of the Asian Criminological Society.



  1. Yale University

    Ph.D., Sociology

  2. Yale University

    M.Phil., Sociology

  3. Yale University

    M.A., Sociology

  4. Hokkaido University

    S.J.D., Law

  5. Hokkaido University

    LL.M., Law

  6. Hokkaido University

    LL.B., Law


  1. International Prize 2014

    Awarded by the Law and Society Association.

  2. Distinguished Book Award 1992

    Awarded by the Division of International Criminology of the American Society of Criminology for the book "Policing in Japan".

Selected Scholarship

  1. The Enigma of Japan as a Testing Ground for Cross-Cultural Criminological Studies 01/2012

    International Annals of Criminology

  2. Introduction to the Special Issue: The Future of Lay Adjudication and Theorizing Today's Resurgence of Civic, Legal Participatory Systems in East and Central Asia 04/2011

    International Journal of Law, Crime and Justice

  3. Legal Culture and the State in Modern Japan: Continuity and Change 01/2011

    Law, Society, and History: Themes of the Legal Sociology and Legal History of Lawrence W. Friedman

  4. The Resurgence of Lay Adjudicatory Systems in East Asia 04/2010

    Asian Pacific Law and Policy Journal

  5. The Reform of Legal Education in East Asia 12/2008

    Annual Review of Law & Social Science


  1. Japanese Legal Systems