[Event] BelMix Seminar Series-2023(II): 1

“Cross-border Marriages in Japan: A Comparative Examination through Psychological and Sociological Lenses”

The risk and protective factors in the cross-cultural (Japanese – non-Japanese) couples in reference to marital and sexual satisfaction

by Dr. Dariusz Skowronski (Associate Professor of Psychology and Clinical Sexology, Temple University, Japan Campus)

Social Integration of International Marriage Migrants: Russian-Speaking Females’ Experiences in Japan

by Dr. Viktoriya Kim (Associate professor, College of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University, Japan)

Date: Monday 09 October 2023, 11am – 1pm (Brussels Time).

Venue: Room S.15.215 (Building S, 15th floor)

Campus Solbosch, Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB)

Avenue Jeanne 44, Bruxelles 1050.

AND also live streamed online via Zoom.


The risk and protective factors in the cross-cultural (Japanese – non-Japanese) couples in reference to marital and sexual satisfaction

The presentation offers the comprehensive introduction to the risk and protective factors related to couple dynamics in the cross-cultural context with a special emphasis on partnership, communication, the cultural background, and sexual satisfaction. The presentation offers multidisciplinary perspectives on variouspsychological, social, and cultural phenomena related to the cross-cultural romantic relationships and marriages in the Japanese context.

Social Integration of International Marriage Migrants: Russian-Speaking Females’ Experiences in Japan

This presentation offers an examination of the settlement and integration processes undergone by Russian-speaking international marriage migrants in Japan, with a particular focus on the challenges encountered during the settlement phase and the various conflicts and crises that emerge during their integration. The study contributes to the broader discourse surrounding the building of multicultural communities and the integration of migrant populations within the Japanese context. The qualitative dataset used for this analysis was collected over a span of fifteen years (2007-2022). It pertains specifically to a cohort of 50 women from former Soviet Union countries, all of whom are/were married toJapanese men.

Through an exploration of these women’s life trajectories, the study delineates four distinct stages in their settlement journeys: pre-migration, initial arrival in Japan, the formative years following arrival, and the subsequent later years of integration. These stages reveal pronounced variations in integration patterns contingent upon factors such as language proficiency attainment, the specific pathway of migration, and educational attainment. Consequently, the study discerns that early language acquisition and support structures provided by host families tend to facilitate relatively smoother integration processes. Nonetheless, it is noteworthy that human capital resources may serve as dual-edged swords, both propelling and impeding the integration trajectory. Furthermore, this research underscores the salient role played by gender role expectations, limited social networks, and constrained employment opportunities in impeding the seamless integration of these migrants. The study underscores the significance of the depth of familial bonds established with receiving families and the concomitant weakening of ties with their countries of origin, influencing the pivotal decision of selecting Japan as the ultimate settlement destination.

An integral aspect of this inquiry is the examination of the multifaceted identities assumed by migrant women originating from former Soviet countries, revealing a diverse spectrum of strengths and vulnerabilities that punctuate their experiences in Japan. It is imperative to acknowledge the high incidence of marital dissolution, the constraints imposed by a limited labor market, and the challenges associated with cultivating meaningful social networks, all of which are compounded as these women advance in age within the Japanese society. Overall, this study offers a nuanced exploration of the multifaceted settlement and integration experiences of Russian-speaking international marriage migrants in Japan. It underscores the complex interplay of linguistic proficiency, migration trajectories, and educational backgrounds, and highlights the pivotal role of familial support networks, while shedding light on the intricate social and economic pressures encountered by these women as they age within the Japanese society. (Reference: https://doi.org/10.1080/1070289X.2019.1677325)


Dariusz P. Skowronski is an Associate Professor in Psychological Studies at Temple University Japan Campus, teaching Human Sexuality, Clinical Sexology in the Japanese Context, Gender Studies in Psychology, Clinical Psychology and other psychology courses. He is also a psychotherapist specializing in clinical sexology and sexual therapy. He is trained in Poland and Australia and is available for face-to-face psychotherapy in Tokyo area (Aoyama Bright Life Counseling), as well as he offers video-based online counseling.

The fields of his academic and clinical expertise include a wide range of marital, relationships, gender and sexuality issues, sex education and sexual development, sexual health and satisfaction, sexual disorders, sexual addictive behaviors and sexual abuse. Dariusz also works in the area of cross-cultural psychology with a special emphasis on international couples and marriages.

Dariusz P. Skowronski obtained his Master’s degree in Psychology (1995), and PhD in Educational Sciences from Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland, in 2002, and completed additional postgraduate work on gender and human sexuality with the Polish Sexological Society, Warsaw, getting full qualification in Clinical Sexology in 2003. Dariusz was a Faculty member and Chief Psychologist in The Graduate Program in Sexual Health at The University of Sydney from 2005-2008 and collaborated closely with the Australian Society of Sex Educators, Researchers and Therapists, New South Wales as a Supervisor in Sexology and Sex Therapy. He also lectured psychology courses at Temasek Polytechnic in Singapore, as well as at Waseda University and Sophia University in Tokyo. The Australian Psychological Society recognized his clinical psychology qualifications in 2008. 

Dariusz also completed multiple trainings in psychotherapy, sex therapy, and couple therapy, including Couples Sex Therapy in the Japanese Context training at Nakamura Psychotherapy Institute Japan (2013), and Postgraduate Sexual Attitude Reassessment Training at Graduate Program in Sexual Health Sydney, Australia (2007). Currently Dariusz is a member of Polish Sexological Society and Japan Association of Family Therapy, as well as he closely collaborates with Asian Association of Family Therapy and Korean Association for Family Therapy.

Viktoriya Kim is an Associate Professor at the College of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University. She specializes in sociology, focusing on migration, family, and gender. Her main research topics are international marriage migration, multicultural policies, and integration issues of migrants in Japan. Her current projects involve comparative research on Russian-speaking female marriage migrants in South Korea and Japan; foreign residents and their integration, as well as multicultural community building in Japan; foreign communities and their lives in Japan during the COVID-19 pandemic; along with third-generation Koreans in Central Asia and their integration issues, and gender issues in Japanese higher education.

Viktoriya is a lead-author of “The Politics of International Marriage in Japan” (Rutgers University Press, 2021). Her other recent publications included co-authored papers on “Integration of International Marriage Migrants: Russian- Speaking Female Marriage Migrants in Japan and South Korea” (forthcoming), “Three-Way Process of Integration in Japan: Migrants and Ethnic Communities During Pandemic Crisis,” “Globalizing Central Asian Human Resources and Soft Power of Japanese Education.” Currently, she is a member of the International Integration, Migration and Local Communities Network (Anglia Ruskin University, UK) which aims to exchange experiences and promote joint projects for implementation of integration programs in UK, EU, Japan and India.

Cite this blog post
Cai Chen (2023, October 2). [Event] BelMix Seminar Series-2023(II): 1. BelMix. Retrieved May 28, 2024, from https://doi.org/10.58079/lwwj