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Nguyen Dinh Dang didn’t choose Japan so much as Japan chose him. The Soviet-trained Vietnamese nuclear physicist and painter first came to live here in 1995 at the invitation of Riken, a semigovernmental science and technology research institute.

“I was first invited to the University of Tokyo for 10 months in 1994 on the recommendation of my former teacher at Moscow State University, and then in 1995 I was invited to Riken,” Dang explained. He has been working at the Wako, Saitama Prefecture, facility ever since, first as a research fellow and now as a contract researcher.

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