About the Collection

The Teach311.org Interview Collection hosts a selection of documentary film and oral history interviews related to the theme of disaster. Our focus on Asia fosters the contemplation of multiple perspectives that we hope will deepen our understandings of how disasters are produced and dealt with around the world.

As a joint collaboration between Teach311.org and the Disaster Governance Asia (DGA) Project at the National University of Singapore (NUS), the gathering of interview perspectives in the Interview Collection stemmed from initiatives to assemble relevant video resources onto a common pedagogical platform, in the interest of securing accessibility and ease of viewing for students and educators alike.

At present, our Interview Collection features interviews from two main sources.

Documentary film clips from Healing Fukushima (2016)
The first series of interviews are shown in Healing Fukushima (2016), a documentary film that presents the reflections of medical practitioners and specialists from Fukushima on the health issues produced by the March 11th, 2011 disaster, and the state of post-disaster medical care.

Three selected clips of the documentary film are viewable on this page and on each clip's corresponding Vimeo URL.

These clips are also introduced with guided annotations and questions for class activity and independent reflection, in order to steer teaching and learning more effectively.

Oral history interviews
The Interview Collection features seven oral history interviews conducted with students from Miyagi Gakuin Women's University, a civil engineer, and a thyroid specialist, all of whom had close involvement and/or personal experiences with the March 11th, 2011 disaster and ongoing recovery efforts.

These interviews are password-protected on the Teach311.org's Vimeo account, in adherence to agreements established between interviewer and interviewee. See Access and Terms of Use below for more information on requesting for access.

These interviews provide new insights into the professional and personal experiences of interviewees involved in, or affected by the March 11th, 2011 disaster. These interviews can be used in conjunction with other resources introduced on Teach311.org to open classroom discussion on the social, technological, and recovery aspects of disaster.

Getting Access

All documentary film clips are viewable on this page and on their Vimeo URL.

All oral history interviews are password-protected on Teach311.org's Vimeo account.

Interviewee consent and permission has been granted to Teach311.org to make these oral history interviews available for educational activities within classroom settings, including unpublished student coursework, following an application by educators detailing the purpose and activity for which these videos will be used.

Password protection of these oral history interviews on Teach311.org's Vimeo account ensures that the viewing of interview clips for educational purposes adhere to the agreements established between interviewer and interviewee, and safeguards sensitive and personal information disclosed in the course of the oral interview process.

Steps to getting access:

1. Get access to the oral history interviews by sending us a Video Access Request Form here.
2. Upon request approval, a password will be provided to grant access to these interviews.
3. Click on the links of your chosen interview clip on this page, or view the full album here. Enter the provided password when prompted, and proceed to view the interviews.

Terms of Use

The viewing and the usage of this Interview Collection requires that you accept and abide by the following Terms of Use.

All videos and their interview content of this Interview Collection remain the intellectual property of the creator and the interviewees appearing in the documentary film and oral history interviews. The following uses are expressly not permitted by the agreements signed with the interviewees:

-Using the provided videos for non-educational purposes.

-Quoting verbatim from interviews in publications apart from unpublished student coursework.

-Sharing or distributing the provided videos and password in other contexts without express written permission by the rights holders.

-Downloading or modifying the provided videos.

By accessing these videos, the user agrees to be contacted by members of Teach311.org in order to collect feedback on the results of class activities conducted.

Documentary Film Interviews

Healing Fukushima (2016)
Directed by Sulfikar Amir. Written by Shi-Lin Loh.
Click to view film trailer

Healing Fukushima is a documentary exploration of Japanese medical responses to a series of disasters that culminated in the nuclear accidents on March 11th, 2011. It depicts how Japanese medical professionals responded to the disaster, which is complicated by an invisible component of radiation risk. The film examines the emergence of a new mode of knowledge production in the wake of unforeseen calamity. Featuring the voices of eight practitioners from two municipal hospitals and Fukushima’s flagship institute of medical education, the film presents their reflections on the health issues produced by the 3.11 disaster, as well as the complexities involved in creating and conducting a system of post-disaster medical care. Revolving around resilience and knowledge production, the film explores responses, contingencies, practices and subjectivities as the four themes that characterize institutional and individual responses to the Fukushima nuclear crisis. It carries the viewer from practitioners’ workplaces to private spaces and the affected areas around Fukushima. Educators may ask students to watch this film and invite them to engage with the perspectives it presents from the medical practitioners interviewed about how doctors respond to disasters.

All three selected clips of the Healing Fukushima (2016) documentary film are in Japanese with English subtitles. [Korean subtitles forthcoming]

Click on the drop-down list below to view these selected clips, or click on the title displayed in the embedded video for viewing on its Vimeo URL.

Hasegawa Arifumi is the Deputy Chairman of the Department of Radiation Disaster Medicine at Fukushima Medical University Hospital. Hasegawa was a former emergency physician turned radiation disaster medicine specialist during the course of 3.11. In this clip, he invites his students from Fukushima Medical University to differentiate between the measurements for the quantity of radioactive substances and levels of biologically damaging radiation. (Clip duration: 02:50)

Kumagai Atsushi is an endocrinologist and hibakusha (atomic bomb survivor) medical specialist. He is from a team from Nagasaki University Hospital who assisted radiation disaster relief efforts during 3.11. Kumagai is also the current Deputy Director of the Education Center for Disaster Medicine at Fukushima Medical University Hospital. He currently resides in Fukushima. In this video, he shares his views on the individual responsibility and answerability of the private citizen to assess the risks of living in the vicinity of nuclear power plants. (Clip duration: 02:01)

Okubo Reiko is an emergency physician with the Emergency Care Division of Fukushima Medical University. She is a member of Hasegawa Arifumi’s team who chose to remain in Fukushima after 3.11 to continue her work and to have a family. In the wake of the nuclear disaster, she talks about the medical and social support for and availability of information on radiation in Japan today, and about decisions to raise children in Fukushima. (Clip duration: 02:03)

Suggested questions for closer analysis and discussion of the documentary film clips can be found here.

For more questions at the undergraduate level, see our Healing Fukushima teaching module.

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Oral History Interviews

The oral history interviews collection contains seven interviews conducted with undergraduate students from Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University (MGWU), a civil engineer, and a thyroid specialist, all of whom had close involvement and/or personal experiences with the March 11th, 2011 disaster and ongoing recovery efforts.

Click on the list of names below to view more interview information and access each interview video clip. Translated transcripts in different languages (English, French, Italian, and Japanese) are also available below. Educators may click here to access these oral history interviews and supplementary materials by sending us a Video Access Request Form.

For more information about using the Interview Collection in a contemporary Japan history seminar, see Kobiljski, Aleksandra, “Teaching with 3.11 in the Present,” 25 March 2019.


Asuka Katō interviewed by John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women's University)

Clip 1: Introduction to Golden Z Club (03:07)

Clip 2: Spanish Tile-Making In Onagawa (07:21)

How can local handicraft initiatives contribute to rebuilding and restoration in areas recovering from disaster? John Morris speaks to Asuka Katō, student president of the Golden Z Club at Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University, about her interviews with a group of women in Onagawa and their Spanish tile-making. The initiatives of local women from a pottery club has since developed into a local handicraft enterprise that has contributed to rebuilding efforts in Onagawa and gathered a demand for its tiles from around Japan. Founded in 2015, the Golden Z Club has engaged in activities aimed at promoting and revitalizing the Sendai area. They have conducted interviews with people living in the area, and introduced their activities in English to the world at large. Many of the students whose interviews are featured on this page are members of the club.

Available in Japanese with English subtitles and French transcript.

Otomo Mai interviewed by John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women's University)

Clip 1: Self-Introduction and Tsunami Experience (05:53)

Clip 2: Invitation to U.S. Disaster Sites (04:22)

Clip 3: Reflections from U.S. Visit (05:40)

Clip 4: Awareness as Disaster Survivor (03:34)

Clip 5: Aspirations Moving Forward (06:30)

Otomo Mai is a fourth-year student studying food nutrition at Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University at the time of recording. She shares the developments in her life six years after the March 11th, 2011 tsunami, her experiences following her visit to U.S. disaster sites, and her reflections on herself as a disaster survivor. Mai has also participated in the United Nations’ World Conference on Disaster Reduction in Sendai back in 2015.

Available in Japanese with English subtitles, English transcript, and Italian transcript (clip 4) 

Watanabe Kanami interviewed by John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women's University)

Clip 1

Clip 2 (05:18)

Clip 3 (07:07)

Clip 4 (04:58)

Watanabe Kanami is a third-year student studying English literature at Miyagi Gakuin Women's University.

Available in Japanese with English and Japanese transcript.


Kato Tomoka and Ayabe Kasumi interviewed by John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women's University)


Clip 1 (04:57)

Clip 2 (04:18)

Clip 3 (04:33)

Kato Tomoka and Ayabe Kasumi are both first-year students at Miyagi Gakuin Women's University, majoring in cultural studies and contemporary business respectively.

Available in Japanese.

Horigome Yuka interviewed by John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women's University)

Clip 1 (04:16)

Clip 2 (04:36)

Clip 3 (05:19)

Clip 4 (04:20)

Horigome Yuka is a first-year student majoring in contemporary business at Miyagi Gakuin Women's University.

Available in Japanese with English transcript.


Nakamura Susumu interviewed by Philip C. Brown (Ohio State University)


Clip 1 (05:40)

Clip 2 (11:50)

Clip 3 (10:05)

Clip 4 (04:22)

Clip 5 (03:45)

Clip 6 (05:39)

Clip 7 (10:23)

Dr. Nakamura Susumu is a civil engineer (earthquake resilience) and professor at Nihon University, who specializes in aspects of earthquake, nuclear and civil engineering. In this series of clips, Dr. Nakamura shares how his experiences with earthquakes as a undergraduate and later, as a professional engineer, had shaped his research direction. The insight he provides on disaster prevention gathered from years of working in the engineering industry in Japan include his views on how attitudes and design ideas might have changed in the industry, following the Fukushima nuclear meltdown and the Kobe earthquake of 1995. He also discusses the determinants of social consensus between engineers, levels of government, and the average Japanese citizen on issues of managing building standards, and the role of public education in keeping the populace informed of past earthquakes, and evacuation procedures.

氏名:中村 晋 教授
専門:地震工学, 耐震工学, 動土質力学, 安全工学, 地盤工学

Available in English.

Suzuki Shinichi in interview with Philip C. Brown (Ohio State University)

Clip 1 (05:16)

Clip 2 (06:18)

Clip 3 (03:44)

Clip 4 (5:20)

Clip 5 (07:09)

Clip 6 (04:52)

Clip 7 (05:04)

Clip 8 (05:15)
*Due to technical difficulties, the last few minutes of this interview have not been recorded on video.

Dr. Suzuki Shinichi is a physician and thyroid specialist. He has had a major role in leading the testing of vulnerable people, especially children, for thyroid cancers.  He was part of the team that attempted to deal with medical emergency issues related to radiation and other elements of the triple disaster of 2011.  

氏名:鈴木 眞一
甲状腺内分泌学講座 主任教授
同、附属病院 甲状腺内分泌外科部長

Available in Japanese with English transcript (clip 1 and 2)


We thank students in the 2019 contemporary Japan seminar at the University of Paris (Diderot) and Prof. Aleksandra Kobiljski for their generous contributions to this project. To learn more about how to use Teach311.org as a site of learning-in-action, contact us at teach3eleven [at] gmail.com.

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Request for Access

To request for access to the oral history interviews, send us a completed Video Access Request Form. Use of these password-protected oral history interviews requires that you accept and abide by the Terms of Use stated.

Video Access Request Form

Video Access Request Form

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For general questions about Teach311.org or the Interview Collection, email teach3eleven [at] gmail.com.

Help Make These Videos More Accessible!

Willing to translate our interviews? Write to our video curator Grace Teo at grac0019 [at] ntu.edu.sg to help make these videos accessible to more classrooms.

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Credits and Acknowledgements

The Interview Collection is a joint collaboration between Teach311.org and the Disaster Governance Asia (DGA) Project at the National University of Singapore (NUS).

Interviews with students of Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University: John F. Morris (Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University)

Interviews with Dr Nakamura Susumu of Nihon University and Dr Suzuki Shinichi of Fukuoka Prefectural University: Philip C. Brown (Ohio State University)

We thank Aihara Yasuhiro, Stella Gendrey, Florian Giraud, Joseph Henares, Jules Kollisch, Andrea Migliavacca, and Lydie Catherine Ozourma for contributing to the transcriptions and translations of the videos.

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