Mariko Yang-Yoshihara works as an instructor and an education researcher for Stanford Program on International and Cross-Cultural Education (SPICE). She utilizes inquiry-based pedagogy to design, develop, and teach online courses and seminars on subjects including design thinking, entrepreneurship, gender, DEI, and sustainability. Mariko co-instructs the Stanford-Hiroshima Collaboration Project on Entrepreneurship (SHCPE), a graduate course for the Hiroshima Business Management School at the Prefectural University of Hiroshima. She also developed a new course on entrepreneurship and sustainability education in collaboration with Eikei University, Hiroshima Prefecture’s new liberal arts college. She also instructs Stanford e-Eiri, a high school course that explores the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with a special focus on gender equity. In addition to her role at SPICE, Mariko is a Visiting Professor at Tohoku University, serving as a faculty member of the School of Engineering and an academic advisor to graduate students in the Department of Management Science and Technology. She also co-teaches a graduate course on global business management as a part-time Lecturer at Hosei University.
Mariko holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from Stanford University. Her research interests have revolved around topics such as innovation policy, gender equity, entrepreneurship education, and research management. Her academic works can be found in volumes published by the MIT Press, the Tokyo University Press (Japanese), Hakuto Shobo (Japanese), the Journal of Science Policy and Research Management (Japanese), and the International Journal of STEM Education. Prior to her doctoral training, Mariko earned an M.A. in Political Science from Stanford University, a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Irvine (magna cum laude), and a B.A. in Literature from the University of the Sacred Heart in Japan.
Mariko believes that education plays a critical role in inspiring the next generation. As a graduate of the all-girls Sacred Heart School in Tokyo, she is committed to the promotion of women’s empowerment. In 2016, Mariko co-organized the Stanford-Silicon Valley U.S.-Japan Dialogue: Womenomics, the Workplace, and Women and published the final report. That same year, she co-founded SKY Labo, a Japanese non-profit organization to empower girls with STEAM (STEM + arts/humanities) education. SKY Labo’s inquiry-based program has successfully obtained official support from the Gender Equality Bureau of Japan’s Cabinet Office in 2019, and has received the Semi-Grand Prix of Nissan Foundation’s Rikajyo Ikusei Sho (Award Promoting Next Generation of Women in STEM) in August 2022. Mariko co-authored a book on STEAM education and design thinking,『世界を変えるSTEAM人材―シリコンバレー「デザイン思考」の核心』, which was published by Asahi Shinbun Press in 2019. The book has been translated into the Chinese language as 硅谷是如何培养创新人才的 by the Zhejiang People’s Publishing House (浙江人民出版社) in 2021.