About us

The Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures (SISJAC) was founded in 1999 through the generosity of Sir Robert and Lady Sainsbury to promote knowledge and understanding of Japanese arts and cultures. In its second decade the Institute has formulated a renewed mission statement which not only reflects the benefactors’ intentions and is grounded in their original vision, but aims to expand its intellectual horizons.

The mission of the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures is to promote world class research and be a leader in the study of Japanese arts and cultures from the past to the present.

Working with our partners and funders, the Institute furthers its mission through:

  • Creating collaborative and active global research networks; and
  • Disseminating the results of our research; while
  • Advancing outreach and educational activities.

The Institute continues its close collaborations with institutional partners including schools of study at the University of East Anglia (UEA), the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, and the British Museum. It maintains its programme of fellowships, public lectures and international workshops as well as its commitment to the web and web publications.

The Lisa Sainsbury Library in Norwich remains central to the Institute’s vision and its collections are a research resource of major importance that we are pleased to share with advanced scholars throughout Europe.

The staff at the Institute is comprised of a small dedicated team, each responsible for the various areas of operation. As an independent charitable organization, the Institute is committed to running excellent research programmes by securing external project funds, while retaining its independence by managing its own administration and the Grade II listed building that serves as our Headquarters in Norwich.