The Tôyô bunko or Oriental Library is a library and research centre in Tokyo founded in 1924. Its main mission is to gather specialized documentation on Asia and publish scholarly works and journals. The richness of its collections and the number of its researchers make it the most important institution in this field in Japan. The Tokyo Centre of the EFEO was established in 1994 within the Tôyô bunko under an official agreement on academic co-operation between the two institutions.
Professor Shiba Yoshinobu, born in 1930, is a specialist in the economic and social history of China and the author of Commerce and Society in Sung China. He is emeritus professor of Tokyo University, member of the Japan Academy, former director and current special advisor of the Tôyô bunko. He holds the award of the Japanese Order of Culture.