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Business Law Department


The Business Law Department of ICS is the leading institution for advanced business law education in Japan aimed at practicing legal professionals. It offers a rich curriculum in business law classes and focuses on combining practice with theory. A significant number of our faculty has substantial full-time work experience in the private sector. A very low student/faculty ratio of about 3:1 allows close faculty supervision of student work and enables intensive in-class interaction. The Business Law Department is located in the convenient downtown ICS campus.

Existing Programs

The Business Law Department currently offers three programs that are taught primarily in Japanese: a Masters Program in Business Law (MA degree), a Masters Program in Business Law with a concentration in Intellectual Property (MA degree), and a Doctoral Program in Business Law (Phd degree). Each program requires a thesis that is developed and completed under the close supervision of the faculty thesis advisor.

New International Programs

In response to the growing need in Japan for the development of internationally minded business law professionals who can work effectively in English and the equal need to make Japanese business law and practice accessible to non-Japanese legal professionals, the Business Law Department will initiate two new programs in 2014.

1. Global Business Law Program

A new Global Business Law program will be available as a concentration within the existing doctoral program. Admission to this concentration will require a minimum TOEFL score and a substantial number of courses will be taught in English. Doctoral candidates in this concentration will be encouraged to study abroad for a year at law schools in the U.S. and elsewhere under exchange programs. For information on our new Global Business Law Program, contact: cnunoi@ics.hit-u.ac.jp

2. Business Law Student Exchange Program(Click here)

This new student exchange program provids a limited number of American and other non-Japanese law students, from exchange partner law schools with an opportunity to study Japanese and international business law in English during the fall semester at ICS. No Japanese language is required, but both Japanese language courses and business law courses taught in Japanese are available for interested students. For information on our new Business Law Student Exchange Program, contact: baronson@ics.hit-u.ac.jp

See profiles of our Business Law Program faculty

Business Law Faculty


Hidetaka Aizawa

University of Tokyo (BA, 1977); University of Tokyo (LLM, 1979, )
Professor Aizawa taught at Tsukuba University (1984-1998), Waseda University (2000-2006), and University of Tokyo (2003-2008), and was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Washington (1987-1988) and a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School (2007). His area of research interest is intellectual property, and he recently completed the fifth edition of his book entitled “Intellectual Property Law.” Professor Aizawa currently serves on three government advisory councils, including the Industrial Property Council of the Japan Patent Office. Professor Aizawa joined ICS in 2004.

Bruce Aronson

Boston University (BA, 1974); Harvard Law School (JD, 1977)
Professor Aronson was a corporate partner at the law firm of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP in New York (1989-2000) and a professor of law at Creighton University (2004-2013). He has also engaged in research and teaching at a number of U.S. law schools including Columbia (2002-2004), Michigan (2004), Boston University, and Georgetown. His experience in Japan includes research at the University of Tokyo (Fulbright, 2000-2002, 2004), the Bank of Japan (2010), and Waseda University (Fulbright, 2011-2013). His main area of research is comparative corporate governance with a focus on Japan. He also acts as an advisor to the law firm of Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu. Professor Aronson joined ICS in 2013 and is admitted to practice in New York.

Yuriko Inoue

University of Tokyo (BA, 1986), University of Tokyo (LLB, 1990)
Professor Inoue taught at the University of Tokyo (1993-1995), Tsukuba University (1995-2002), and Kobe University (2002-2010), and was a Visiting Professor at the Institute of Information, Amsterdam University (2006, 2007-2008). Her area of research is intellectual property law. Professor Inoue has recently co-authored a book on information law and a casebook on intellectual property law. She is a member of a number of advisory councils, including the Council for Industrial Policy of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). Professor Inoue joined ICS in 2010.

Masakazu Iwakura

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1985); Harvard Law School (LLM, 1993)
Professor Iwakura is a partner at the law firm of Nishimura & Asahi (Senior Partner & Executive Committee Management Member). He has practice experience at Debevoise & Plimpton (New York, 1993-1994) and Arnold & Porter (Washington DC, 1994-1995). He has twice been a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School (2007, 2013). His field of expertise is Mergers & Acquisitions. In addition to a variety of publications in that field, Professor Iwakura currently serves as an independent director or independent outside auditor for three listed Japanese companies. He joined ICS in 2006 and is admitted to practice in Japan and New York.

Hideyuki Kobayashi

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1974)
Professor Kobayashi was a professor of law at Sophia University (1980-2004), and a Visiting Scholar at Yale Law School (1982-1983) and Michigan Law School (1983). He is also a partner at the law firm of Blakemore Mitsuki. Professor Kobayashi has published extensively in a number of fields related to civil procedure and civil law, including litigation, arbitration, and product liability. He has served on a number of government advisory committees, and is currently a member of the finance Council, Ministry of Finance. Professor Kobayashi joined ICS in 2004 and is admitted to practice in Japan.

Hiroya Nakakubo

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1980); Harvard Law School (LLM, 1990)
Professor Nakakubo has taught at Fukuoka University, Chiba University, and Kyushu University. He was a Visiting Scholar at Pennsylvania Law School (1989-1990), University of Washington Law School (1997), Cornell Law School (2010, and University of Glasgow (2013), and was a Visiting Professor at Johann Wolfgang Goethe University (1999). Professor Nakakubo has published widely on both Japan and the U.S. in his field of labor and employment law. He serves as a member of both Japan’s Central Labor Relations Commission and its Central Minimum Wage Council. Professor Nakakubo joined ICS in 2007.

Chihiro Nunoi

Hitotsubashi University (LLB, 1979); Hitotsubashi University (MA, 1981)
Professor Nunoi taught at Tokai University (1984-1998), and has been a Visiting Scholar at Bonn University (1986-1987) and Munich University (1993-1994) in Germany. His research broadly covers international and comparative commercial law, and he has published articles in English, German, and French, in addition to those in Japanese. Professor Nunoi’s recent work has a focus on Vietnam and Southeast Asia. He served as chief committee member of the JICA legislative cooperative project in China (2004-2009). Professor Nunoi joined ICS in 1998.

Zenichi Shishido

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1980); University of Tokyo (Phd, 2007)
Professor Shishido taught at Seikei University (1983-2009), and has been a Visiting Professor at Columbia Law School (1998-1999) and Harvard Law School (2005). He continues to be a Visiting Professor at UC Berkeley (Boalt Hall) on a regular basis. Professor Shishido is a well-known authority on Japanese and comparative corporate governance, having written extensively on the subject in both Japanese and English. He has served on advisory committees to Japan’s Ministry of Economy Trade and Industry (METI) and Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications (MPT). Professor Shishido joined ICS in 2009.

Kimitoshi Yabuki

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1982); Columbia Law School (LLM, 1991)
Admitted: Japan (Tokyo Bar Association, 1987); New York (1992)
Professor Yabuki was a partner at the law firm of Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu (1987-1996), worked for Covington & Burling (Washington DC and Brussels, 1991-1993), and since 1996 has acted as the managing partner of Yabuki Law Office. He is an expert on antitrust law. In addition to his publications in that field, Professor Yabuki holds leadership positions in bar committees in Japan and Asia in the areas of antitrust and international relations. He also has served as independent director and independent outside auditor for a number of leading Japanese corporations (currently Member of the Audit & Supervisory Board, Ricoh Company, Ltd.). Professor Yabuki joined ICS in 2010, and is admitted to practice in Japan and New York.

Associate Professors

Hiroyuki Ogawa

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1997), Hitotsubashi University (Phd, 2003); Washington University (LLM 2004)
Professor Ogawa has been an associate professor of law at ICS since 2008. His major research interest is the comparative study of financial regulations in Japan and the United States. His recent publication includes “Financial Instruments and Exchange Act” (Shinseisha 2012) and “Commercial Law” (Shinseisha 2013). His Japanese translation of Marc I. Steinberg’s “Understanding Securities Law, 4th Ed.” (Matthew Bender & Co. 2007) was published by LexisNexis Japan. Professor Ogawa is admitted to practice in New York.

Shutaro Tomatsu

University of Tokyo (BS, 2000); University of Tokyo (MA, 2000);
University of Tsukuba Law School (JD, 2011)
Professor Tomatsu worked for thirteen years at the Japan Patent Office as a patent examiner and in policy planning. His area of research interest is patent law and policy. Professor Tomatsu joined ICS in 2015

Masao Yoshimura

University of Tokyo (LLB, 1999)
Professor Yoshimura taught at Yokohama National University (2002-2012). His area of research is tax law. Among his publications, he recently co-authored a book in Japanese entitled “Tax Law” and produced an article in English on “The Debt-Equity Conundrum” for Cahiers de Droit Fiscal International. Professor Yoshimura joined ICS in 2012.