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Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien

Co-organizers

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)



International Workshop

Social Inequality in Japan: A Reassessment

March 18 - March 19, 2013

This non-public workshop was organized by the DIJ in cooperation with David Chiavacci from the Institute of Asian and Oriental Studies, University of Zürich. As a preparatory meeting with ample room for discussion, it gathered the speakers invited to the annual conference of the German Association of Social Science Research on Japan (VSJF) to be held on November 22–24, 2013, at the Japanese-German Centre in Berlin (JDZB). The workshop focussed on five dimensions of social inequality that are particularly relevant in the context of Japan: education, the labour market, the welfare state, urban–rural disparities as well as minorities.

We gratefully acknowledge the financial support from the Mercator Foundation Switzerland.

Presentations

Day 1         March 18th (Monday)

9:00-09:05
Opening remarks

Florian Coulmas


German Institute for Japanese Studies

9:05-09:30
Introduction to the workshop

Carola Hommerich


German Institute for Japanese Studies

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)

9:30-10:00
Keynote speech: Institutions and Agency in the Creation of Social Inequality

Yoshimichi Sato (Tohoku University, Sendai)

10:00-10:15
Coffee break

10:15-12:15
Panel 1 – Labor Market

Chair

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)

The "Re-segmentation" of the Japanese Labour Market: A Structural Effect of the Increasing Heterogeneity of Firms?

Sébastien Lechevalier (EHESS, Paris)

Discourses about Labour Market Inequalities

Karen Shire (University Duisburg-Essen)

Agency in Labor Markets

Jun Imai (Hokkaido University, Sapporo)

12:15-13:30
Lunch

13:30-15:30
Panel 2 – Welfare State

Chair

Carola Hommerich


German Institute for Japanese Studies

Generating Social Inequality from the Perspective of Welfare Provision in Japan

Sawako Shirahase (University of Tokyo)

"Inequality" in Social Policy Debates in Japan since the early 2000s – A Discourse Analytical Approach

Harald Conrad (University of Sheffield)

Structure and Agency in the Japanese Welfare State: Obstacles for Reform

Margarita Estévez-Abe (Collegio Carlo Alberto, Torino)

15:30-16:00
Coffee break

16:00-18:00
Panel 3 – Urban vs. Rural

Chair

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)

The Urban-Rural Divide in Japan: A Matter of Social Inequality?

Ralph Lützeler (University of Bonn)

Discourses on Spatial Inequality and Regional Policy in Japan

Volker Elis (University of Tübingen)

Understanding the Dynamics of Regional Growth and Shrinkage in 21st Century Japan

Peter Matanle (University of Sheffield)

19:00-21:00
Dinner at Hotel New Otani

Day 2         March 19th (Tuesday)

9:00-11:00
Panel 4 – Minorities

Chair

Carola Hommerich


German Institute for Japanese Studies

Does Increasing Ethnic Diversity Equal Increasing Inequality? New and Old Ethnic Minorities and Social Structures in Contemporary Japan

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)

The Tabunkakyosei Model in Crisis? Public Discourse on Immigrant Integration in a Gap Society

Takashi Kibe (International Christian University, Tokyo)

Searching for Power on the Margins: Cultural Capital, Social Capital and Economic Strategies among New Comer Immigrants in Japan

Gracia Liu-Farrer (Waseda University, Tokyo)

11:00-11:15
Coffee break

11:15-13:15
Panel 5 – Education

Chair

Carola Hommerich


German Institute for Japanese Studies

Understanding Structural Changes in Inequality in Education

Takehiko Kariya (Oxford University)

Assessing, Explaining, and Trying to Reduce Inequalities – Discourses of Social Inequality in Education

Julia Canstein (University of Halle-Wittenberg)

Recent Trends in Japan’s Educational Policy

Akito Okada (Tokyo University for Foreign Studies)

13:15-14:30
Lunch

14:30-16:00
General discussion: Interrelations, Analogies and Contradictions

Chair

David Chiavacci (Zurich University)

16:00-16:30
Coffee break

16:30-18:00
Discussion towards the refinement of papers + publication procedure

Chair

Carola Hommerich


German Institute for Japanese Studies

End of the workshop

Projects

Comparatively Happy – Objective Precarity and Subjective Exclusion in Germany and Japan

Happiness in Japan: Continuities and Discontinuities

Challenges of Demographic Change