Yuko Aoyama (Ph.D., UC-Berkeley) is an economic geographer with expertise in global economic change, technological innovation, industrial organization, and cultural economy.  Her research interest lies in developing geographic understandings of global capitalisms and governance from institutional and comparative perspectives. Ranging from research on transnationalization of retailing and entrepreneurship, virtualization of logistics, transnational social entrepreneurship to cultural tourism, her work demonstrates how place specificity sustains distinctiveness in spite of the increasing global integration of economies, in the USA, Japan, Germany, Spain, and India. Particular emphasis is placed on understanding how rationality of specific agents (i.e., users, consumers, entrepreneurs, artists) shapes contemporary economic relations over time and across space, and how they in turn constitutes particular geographies. Her most recent research focuses on collaborations among for-profit, non-profit, and hybrid stakeholders conducting social innovation in India, engaged with delivery of goods and services in areas such as health, education, and renewable energy.

Professor Aoyama has been awarded an Academic Writing Residency at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center, Abe Fellowship from the Social Science Research Council, as well as research grants form the National Science Foundation (Geography and Spatial Science and Economics Programs), National Geographic Society, and the Association of Asian Studies.  She has served as reviewers for a wide range of scholarly journals and books, and held editorial roles, including an editor-in-chief and executive editor of Economic Geography, (2006-2016). She also reviews grant proposals internationally, including Austria, Canada, Finland, Japan, Spain, UK, and USA.

Professor Aoyama taught as faculty and guest lecturers at various venues globally, including the University of Georgia, Singapore Institute of Management summer program, and Japan Center for Michigan Universities.  She was a visiting professor at the University of Tokyo and the University of Kyoto, and has been an Associate in Research at Harvard University, Reichauer Institute of Japanese Studies.

Professor Aoyama is originally from Tokyo, Japan.  Having lived in four different regions of the world, she has also traveled extensively. She has visited Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, China (including Tibet), Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Vietnam, and United Kingdom.