Akira Sai is an Assistant Professor at the Center for Ainu and Indigenous Studies, and the Global Station for Indigenous Studies and Cultural Diversity, Hokkaido University, Japan. He holds a Ph.D. in Area Studies (Southeast Asia) from Kyoto University. His research interests center around sociocultural influences on the conceptualization of body image, particularly in relation to ethnicity and modern media. His recent activities also include work on work values, self-esteem and the mental health of urban slum sanitation workers (e.g., garbage workers) in the face of social stigmatization. He has carried out research in Malaysia, Indonesia, and Solomon Islands.