Atsunobu Tomomatsu

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Atsunobu Tomomatsu (友松 篤信, Tomomatsu Atsunobu) is a Japanese scholar in international relations. His specializations are studies of international cooperation, technical cooperation and international exchange. He is professor emeritus at Utsunomiya University, Japan.



Tomomatsu was born in Nagoya, Aichi prefecture, Japan in 1948. He received his B.S. degree in biological chemistry from Saitama University in 1973 and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees, both in plant biochemistry, from Nagoya University in 1975 and 1980, respectively.

Tomomatsu started his professional career at Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in 1980 and worked as an international development specialist in Indonesia (Bogor Agricultural University) 1980–83, the Kingdom of Thailand (Kasetsart University) in 1985, USA (International Food Policy Research Institute) 1986–88, and as a member of the delegation of the Government of Japan to General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 1987.

Tomomatsu changed his place of work from an international aid agency to a university in 1991 and devoted himself to research and education as an associate professor and a professor since 1994 at Utsunomiya University, Japan. He also taught at the University of Tokyo 1997-2007 and took part in the administration of Utsunomiya University as a special advisor to the president 2005–08. He established Halal Research Utsunomiya, a non-profit organization to propagate an idea of halal to Japanese society to provide Muslims, both locals and tourists, with more comfortable conditions. After Tomomatsu retired from Utsunomiya University in 2014, he established F & T Japan ltd. for halal consultancy and business management. He received a Ph.D. in Agriculture in 1980 from Nagoya University.

Tomomatsu studied plant biochemistry under the supervision of Prof. Ikuzo Uritani and Associate Prof. Tadashi Asahi at the graduate school of Nagoya University. After he had finished academic career, he worked as an international development specialist of JICA in Southeast Asia, South Asia and Africa where he participated in formation, implementation and evaluation of Japan's Official Development Assistance (ODA) projects.

He made a significant contribution to the development of 12 countries in the third world in such various fields as agricultural development, social development, and education and research cooperation where he attempted to introduce empirical and experimental study to university education in Indonesia and Thailand, promoted exports of cash crops from Bhutan to India, helped establishing research institutes of basic medical science in Thailand and Kenya, and participated in food policy research in USA and Indonesia.

Based on his wide range of job experience, Tomomatsu found a philosophy of site-oriented action, which presents the principle of development work as “in the beginning there are problems, not a specialization.” At Utsunomiya University he educated action-oriented approaches, in international development cooperation, such as development facilitation and development intelligence, and proposed global career education for developing globally active manpower.

Tomomatsu is the Chairperson of Halal Research Utsunomiya since 2013, KDDI Foundation Prize in 2015, and a member of the board of trustees of Food-Kansei Communications since 2015, and an Associate International Expert at the Secretariat of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since 2017, as well as being a lecturer at the Open University of Japan since 2004.


International Cooperation

Agricultural Development

Development Education

Religion and Culture

Research Papers

International Cooperation

Agricultural Development

Plant biochemistry

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