Shigeru Araki


  • Shigeru Araki
  • Emeritus Professor
  • Tropical pedology, Tropical agricultural ecology / Studies for red soil in Africa, Practical area studies, Swidden cultivation, Cassava, Virtual earth

Research Summary

I have elucidated the unique features and adaptations to local environment of the swidden-based indigenous agriculture of the savannah belt through analysis of the vegetative and soil dynamics. At present, I am (1) investigating the relationship between African ecosystems and livelihoods from the standpoint of ecology, soil science, and agriculture and placing these findings in the context of local history; (2) attempting to fuse different scholarly disciplines in the “virtual-earth” model, with the view that the different localities in the world are formed through the coupling of natural history and human history; and (3) initiating applied field research to explore the possibility of agriculture that is compatible with the conservation of African tropical forests.


Japanese Society of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition
Japan Association for African Studies (Councilor)
Japanese Society of Pedology
Japan Society of Tropical Ecology
Japanese Society for Tropical Agriculture



  • Araki, S., ed. 2007 Indigenous Agriculture in Tanzania and Zambia in the Present Environmental and Socioeconomic Milieu, African Study Monographs, Supplementary Issue, 34, 135pp.
  • 2007 Araki, S. Ten Years of Population Change and the Chitemene Slash-and-Burn System around the Mpika Area, Northern Zambia, African Study Monographs, Supplimentary Issue, 34: 75-89.
  • 2006 Araki, S. Redefining area: the photo database for integrated area Studies, In Maruyama, J., Wang, L, Fujikura, T. and Ito M. (eds.), Proceedings of Kyoto Symposium, 2006, " Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries and Re-visioning Area Studies: Perspectives from Asia and Africa", pp. 35-40.
  • 2005 Araki, S. Change in population and land use intensities in several villages of the four northern Regions of Namibia. African Study Monographs, Supplementary Issue 30: 77-88.
  • 2005 Araki, S. Forest use and restoration in African savanna from farmer's view on agriculture, forest and land. In Hiramatsu, K. ed., Proceedings of the 7th Kyoto University International Symposium, 2005: Coexistence with Nature in a Glocalizing World ? Field Science Perspectives, (Hotel Nai Lert Prtk, Bankok, Thailand, November 23-24, 2005) 69-81.
  • 2004 Yamaguchi, J. and S. Araki. Biomass Production of Banana Plants in the Indigenous Farming System of the East African Highland: A Case Study on the Kamachumu Plateau in Northwest Tanzania. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 102: 93-111.
  • 2003 Araki, S. Ten Years Change in Population and Chitemene Shifting Cultivation around Mpika Area, Northern Zambia. In S. Araki, ed., Agro-environmental Study on the Sustainability of Indigenous Agriculuture in Central and Southern Africa, (Research Report for Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) (KAKENHI) 1999-2001) 119-134.
  • 2002 Masuya, D. and S. Araki. Finger millet growth and yield in relation to soil fertility in the slash and burn system of cultivation. Tanzania Journal of Population Studies and Development 9: 75-87.
  • 2001 Araki, S. Indigenous aspects and potentials of African agriculture, Working paper submitted to COE symposium in Africa session, Africa in Transformation: Environment, Agriculture and Everyday Life.
  • 1998 Araki, S., B.Msanya, J.P.Magoggo, D.N.Kimaro, and Y.Kitagawa. Characterization of Soils on Various Planation Surfaces in Tanzania, Proceedings of the 16th World Conference of Soil Science ( CD-Rom ). (Montpellier, France)
  • 1996 Araki, S. Annual Progress Report(1994/1995), Miombo Woodlands Agroecological Research Project, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)
  • 1993 Araki, S. Effect on soil organic matter of the chitemene slash-and-burn practice used in northern Zambia. In Mulongoy, K. and Mercks, R.(eds.) Soil Organic Matter Dynamics and Sustainability of Tropical riculture, .367-375, John Wiely & Sons.
  • 1992 Araki, S. The role of Miombo woodland ecosystem in Chitemene shifting cultivation in northern Zambia, Japan Info MAB, No.9:8-15.

Others (Awards, Committees, and Social Activities)

2007 to present: Director of the “Kasou Chikyu” (Virtual-Earth) research group
1996 to present: JICA group-training instructor in “soil diagnosis techniques for sustainable agricultural production and environmental conservation” (Obhiro International Center)