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Preview: Social Science Japan Journal - current issue

Social Science Japan Journal Current Issue





Published: Tue, 08 Aug 2017 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Tue, 03 Oct 2017 12:51:27 GMT

 



Seiji-tetsugaku-teki kōsatsu: riberaru to sōsharu no aida (Papers on Political Philosophy: Between Liberal and Social)

2017-08-08

Seiji-tetsugaku-teki kōsatsu: riberaru to sōsharu no aida (Papers on Political Philosophy: Between Liberal and Social), by UnoShigeki. Tokyo: Iwanami Shoten, 2016, 408 pp., ¥3,400 (ISBN 978-4-00-061128-2)



Jinzai no kokusai idō to inobēshon (International Migration of Highly Skilled Workers and Innovation)

2017-08-08

Jinzai no kokusai idō to inobēshon (International Migration of Highly Skilled Workers and Innovation), by MurakamiYukiko. Tokyo: NTT Publishing, 2015, 253 pp., ¥2,700 (ISBN 978-4-7571-2323-6)



Politics On-screen: Has NHK News Become Politician-Centered?

2017-08-08

Abstract
In the aftermath of the Liberal Democratic Party’s (LDP) historic ouster by and resumption of government control from the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), it is time to reassess whether political reporting and commentary on NHK remains as focused on the bureaucracy as Ellis Krauss (2000) found. I compare NHK political coverage in three time periods—before the change of government to the DPJ, during DPJ rule, and after the LDP regained control. After conducting a content analysis of the most popular NHK news program, News 7, I compare my findings with those of Krauss (2000). I find that officials from government agencies appeared less frequently, while at the same time the number of appearances by prime ministers, political party leaders, and members of various politician groups grew considerably. The trend is clear enough to conclude that NHK News 7 has transformed its political coverage. Possible reasons for this shift are also discussed.



Why Does Japan’s Social Democratic Party Survive? An Organizational Perspective

2017-08-07

Abstract
This article asks what explains the survival of small parties by analyzing the survival of the Social Democratic Party of Japan (SDP). Many new parties were founded in the early 1990s but few have survived. The SDP is thus an outlier case. The SDP is a successor to the Japan Socialist Party (JSP) but many members of the JSP joined the new center-left Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) in 1996. The DPJ prospered but the SDP has faded into electoral insignificance, barely maintaining enough support to qualify as a political party under Japanese law. How and why does the SDP survive despite its dismal performance in elections? I argue that the continuing support of the All Japan Prefectural and Municipal Workers Union (hereafter, Jichiro) has played a significant role in the SDP’s survival. Jichiro officially decided to support the DPJ but some prefectural branches continued to support the SDP. The SDP case confirms that societal organizations have played a significant role more than charismatic leadership or policy distinctiveness for small party survival. The SDP case also indicates that societal organizations may hinder cooperation with other parties and might undermine unified opposition building against the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).



Right On? The LDP’s Drift to the Right and the Persistence of Particularism

2017-08-02

Abstract
Since Prime Minister Abe’s return to power in 2012, there has been an ongoing discussion about whether and if so to what extent the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) had drifted to the ‘right’. This article argues that it is important to distinguish between conservative and neoliberal policy appeals, as those two ideologies often clash with each other, despite being united under the casual ‘right’ banner. Using a newly coded, comprehensive database of LDP election platforms dating back to the 1950s, the analysis presented here shows that electoral reform alone cannot explain the development of these policy appeals since the 1990s. By comparing the LDP to its center-right counterparts in Western countries, I show that external shocks such as the Oil Crisis and the end of the Cold War have influenced neoliberal and conservative policy pledges in Japan and elsewhere. While these trends are similar, the LDP has placed a comparatively lower priority on conservative, and even more so neoliberal policy appeals. The article argues that this is due to the continued relevance of particularistic policy appeals, which are less important in the US, Germany or Great Britain.



Tracing the Local Origins of Farmland Policies in Japan—Local-National Policy Transfers and Endogenous Institutional Change

2017-08-01

Abstract
Japan’s agricultural support and protection regime appears as a particularly persistent relict of the country’s postwar political economy. Yet, it is also by no means static. This article frames the trajectory of Japan’s agricultural support and protection regime as a process of gradual endogenous institutional change. The pace and direction of this process are not only determined on the macro level, but also in the ‘local’. To illustrate this argument, the article traces the local origins of recent policies toward farmland consolidation surrounding a major revision of the Agricultural Land Law in 2009. This revision deregulated corporate farmland access, but also prepared the ground for a new approach to public farmland allocation to expanding farms. The latter was sourced from certain local farmland governance models. At a closer look, these local models are not only ‘best practices’ to achieve farmland consolidation, but also reflect the ‘defensive’ interests of the incumbent local stakeholders of the postwar agricultural support and protection regime, such as the local branches of JA, the powerful organization of agricultural cooperatives. More generally, the article proposes to understand local-national policy transfers as a mode of endogenous institutional change.



International Law and Japanese Sovereignty: The Emerging Global Order in the 19th Century

2017-07-28

International Law and Japanese Sovereignty: The Emerging Global Order in the 19th Century, by HowlandDouglas. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016, xi + 232 pp., $105.00 (ISBN 978-1-137-57108-3)



Jūsōteki-chiiki to shite no ajia: Tairitsu to kyōzon no kōzu (Asia as a Multi-layered Region: In Search for Co-existence in Conflicts)

2017-07-27

Jūsōteki-chiiki to shite no ajia: Tairitsu to kyōzon no kōzu (Asia as a Multi-layered Region: In Search for Co-existence in Conflicts), by ObaMie. Tokyo: Yuhikaku, 2014, 356 pp., ¥3,900 (ISBN 978-4-641-14910-6)



Bridging Troubled Waters: China, Japan and Maritime Order in the East China Sea

2017-07-26

Bridging Troubled Waters: China, Japan and Maritime Order in the East China Sea, by ManicomJames, Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, 2014, 280 pp., $32.95 (ISBN 978-1-62616-035-4)



Nippon kaigi no kenkyū (A Study of the Japan Conference)

2017-07-26

Nippon kaigi no kenkyū (A Study of the Japan Conference), by SuganoTamotsu. Tokyo: Fusōsha, 2016, 302 pp., ¥800 (ISBN 978-4-59-407476-0)



Does Promoting Elderly Employment Hurt Young Japanese Workers?

2017-07-17

Ohta, Souichi. 2012. ‘Koyō no ba ni okeru jakunen-sha to kōrei-sha’ (Young and old in places of employment). Nihon rōdō kenkyū zasshi (Journal of Japanese Labor Studies) 626: 60–74.



Ekkyōsha no seijishi (The Political History of Border Crossers: Japanese Emigration and Colonization in the Asia-Pacific)

2017-07-15

Ekkyōsha no seijishi (The Political History of Border Crossers: Japanese Emigration and Colonization in the Asia-Pacific), by ShiodeHiroyuki. Nagoya: The University of Nagoya Press, 2015, 524 pp., ¥6,300 (ISBN: 978-4-8158-0820-4)



Electoral Reform and National Security in Japan: From Pork to Foreign Policy

2017-07-15

Electoral Reform and National Security in Japan: From Pork to Foreign Policy, by CatalinacAmy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016, 268 pp., $99.99 (ISBN 978-1-10-712049-5)



Zaimushō to Seiji: ‘Saikyō Kanchō’ no Kyozō to Jitsuzō (The Ministry of Finance and Japanese Politics: Virtual and Real Images of ‘The Most Powerful Ministry’)

2017-07-15

Zaimushō to Seiji: ‘Saikyō Kanchō’ no Kyozō to Jitsuzō (The Ministry of Finance and Japanese Politics: Virtual and Real Images of ‘The Most Powerful Ministry’), by ShimizuMasato. Tokyo: Chūō Kōron Shin-sha, 2015, 320 pp., ¥880 (ISBN 978-4-12-102338-4)



Kenpō Kaisei to wa nani ka: Amerika Kaiken-shi kara kangaeru (What Are Constitutional Changes: A History of Constitutional Amendments and Other Constitutional Changes in the United States)

2017-07-15

Kenpō Kaisei to wa nani ka: Amerika Kaiken-shi kara kangaeru (What Are Constitutional Changes: A History of Constitutional Amendments and Other Constitutional Changes in the United States), by AgawaNaoyuki. Tokyo: Shinchōsha, 2016, 316 pp., ¥1,400 (ISBN 978-4-10-603787-0)



Kigyō tōchi no hō to keizaigaku: Hikakuseido bunseki no shiten de miru gabanansu (Law and Economics of Corporate Governance: A Comparative Institutional Analysis)

2017-07-15

Kigyō tōchi no hō to keizaigaku: Hikakuseido bunseki no shiten de miru gabanansu (Law and Economics of Corporate Governance: A Comparative Institutional Analysis), edited by TanakaWataru and NakabayashiMasaki. Tokyo: Yuhikaku, 2015, 416 pp., ¥3,800 (ISBN 978-4-641-16454-3)



Kakudai suru chokusetsu tōshi to nihon kigyō (Increases in Foreign Direct Investment and Japanese Firms)

2017-07-15

Kakudai suru chokusetsu tōshi to nihon kigyō (Increases in Foreign Direct Investment and Japanese Firms), by KiyotaKozo. Tokyo: NTT Publishing, 2015, 224 pp., ¥2,700 (ISBN 978-4-7571-2319-9)



Japan’s Development Assistance: Foreign Aid and the Post-2015 Agenda

2017-07-15

Japan’s Development Assistance: Foreign Aid and the Post-2015 Agenda, edited by ShimomuraYasutami, PageJohn, and KatoHiroshi. London: Palgrave MacMillan, 2015, 408 pp., $120.00 (ISBN 978-1-137-50537-8)



Migration, Whiteness, and Cosmopolitanism: Europeans in Japan

2017-07-15

Migration, Whiteness, and Cosmopolitanism: Europeans in Japan, by DebnárMiloš. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016, XI+235 pp., €89.99 (ISBN 978-1-137-56526-6)



Embedded Racism: Japan’s Visible Minorities and Racial Discrimination

2017-07-15

Embedded Racism: Japan’s Visible Minorities and Racial Discrimination, by ArudouDebito. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2015, 404 pp., $110.00 (ISBN 978-1-4985-1390-6)



Neither a Monolith, nor a Parrot Patterns of Japanese Media Reports on Futenma Relocation Controversy

2017-06-20

Abstract
The Japanese government’s efforts to relocate the US Marine Corps Air Station Futenma within Okinawa, and the local movement opposing the plan, offer an interesting backdrop for the question: How do media portray politically contentious events marked by a great power disparity between the claimants? Systematic comparison of reports by Asahi Shimbun, Ryukyu Shimpo and Yomiuri Shimbun shows how different media types and orientations—national versus local, center-left versus center-right—influence patterns of media reports on politically contentious issues, and how such patterns evolve over time. The findings, while highlighting media behavior in base politics, offer further evidence—both descriptive and statistical—that Japanese media are not a unitary, homogenous actor, and that, despite the stereotype to the contrary, they do not merely parrot elite views.



Risk Communication and the Disposal of Radioactive Debris: Answering Questions Without Questioning Answers

2017-06-06

Abstract
Between 2011 and 2014, the Japanese government conducted a ‘wide-area processing’ scheme to dispose of radioactive debris from Iwate and Miyagi prefectures following the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. The scheme was designed to hasten recovery in those areas by disposing of radioactive debris in other regions. Although ‘wide-area processing’ was open to localities in all 47 prefectures, only 18 participated. Out of the 18 participants, nine explained their involvement to residents in Question and Answer (Q&A) sections posted on their homepages. This article examines those nine Q&As from the perspective of risk communication. It holds that different risk perceptions were held by localities on the one hand, and residents on the other. While the Q&As ostensibly represented a wider shift from a ‘deficit model’ of risk communication to a ‘democratic model’, they nonetheless operated hierarchically through the construction of ‘ambiguous risks’ as ‘simple risks’ to neglect the ‘concern assessment’ advocated by the International Risk Governance Council (IRGC). As such, the Q&As were employed as a moral technique to discipline local populations into accepting the radiation risks generated by the national government’s approach to reconstruction.