Global Citizenship Education from Across the Pacific: A Narrative Inquiry of Transcultural Teacher Education in Japan

  • Edward Howe Thompson Rivers University


Teachers and teacher educators play increasingly important roles in creating successful futures for both individuals and society in light of globalization, increasing diversity, and growing interdependency.  Within the dialectic of global and local, opportunities now for transformational learning, fostering social justice and global citizenship are unprecedented.  However, global citizenship education (GCE) that explores different conceptual, theoretical, and methodological considerations of decolonizing citizenship education in practice remains a challenge for teachers.  Thus, this paper describes pedagogies of GCE within pre-service teacher education classes and high schools in Japan.  Furthermore, transcultural stories of several teachers are shared.  The research reported here is based on over two decades of experience as a teacher educator in Canada and Japan.  There is a paucity of long-term research on teachers’ reflections and experiences as they attempt to integrate GCE into their teaching, captured through personal narrative and story.  Furthermore, due to a Western hegemony of knowledge, Eurocentric education, neo-colonialism, and neoliberal/conservative agendas in higher education, the voices of others outside North America are rarely heard.  The research presented here attempts to fill this gap.  This paper investigates these issues and teachers’ personal practical and professional knowledge through narratives of transcultural journeys.