The Japanese Employment System: Adapting to a New Economic Environment

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Keiko Murata Keiko Murata. Article information. Article Information Volume: 65 issue: 4, page s : Article first published online: October 1, ; Issue published: October 1, Abstract Abstract. Sign Out. Email required Password required Remember me Forgotten your password? Need to activate? Institutional Access does not have access to this content. Open Athens. Purchase Content 24 hours online access to download content. Subscribe to this journal.

What are the Priority Points of Employment System Reform to Advance the Utilization of Women?

Recommend to your library. Rent with DeepDyve. Rent Article. Your Access Options. Forgotten your password? Article available in:. Vol 65, Issue 4, The Japanese wage System. Compensation Review. Economic and Industrial Democracy. Developments since the S. Satoshi Shimizutani and more Eastern Economic Journal Oct Effects of state-sponsored human capital investment on the selection o Crossref Izumi Yokoyama and more Japan and the World Economy Mar Cookies Notification This site uses cookies.

By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more. Tips on citation download. Kigyo no koyo sisutemu to senryaku-teki hokansei [Firm's employment system and strategic complementarity]. Tokyo : University of Tokyo Press.

Labor Market Institutions: “Hot” Reactions

In Japanese. Google Scholar. Arai, Kazuhiro. Nenko-chingin-sei no seikatsuhi-hosho kasetsu saiko [The cost-of-living approach to the seniority-based wage system revisited]. Ikkyo Ronso [Hitotsubashi Review] 92 6 : — Becker, Gary. Investment in human capital: A theoretical analysis. Journal of Political Economy 70 5 : 9 — Chuma, Hiroyuki. Is Japan's long-term employment system changing?

London : Macmillan Press. Google Scholar Crossref. Hall, Robert E. The importance of lifetime jobs in the U. American Economic Review 72 4 : — Google Scholar ISI. Hashimoto, Masanori. Bonus payments, on-the-job training, and lifetime employment in Japan. Journal of Political Economy 87 5 Part 1: — Firm-specific human capital as a shared investment.

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American Economic Review 71 3 : — Hashimoto, Masanori, Raisian, John. Employment tenure and earnings profiles in Japan and the United States. American Economic Review 75 4 : — Hattori, Ryota, Maeda, Eiji. Nihon no koyo-sisutemu ni tsuite [On the Japanese employment system]. Itoh, Hideshi.


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The Japanese Employment System Adapting To A New Economic Environment

Kambayashi, Ryo, Kato, Takao. The Japanese employment system after the bubble burst: New evidence. Having concluded that lifetime employment has only slightly declined, the question remains: has there been a significant impact on women? The answer, as I discuss below, is that women still remain largely excluded from lifetime employment. As a result, women have sought more flexible jobs. The rise of secondary labour has given women new opportunities to enter an economy traditionally favouring male, lifetime employees.

Systems of internal transfers without notice, tough travelling regimes, after-work social drinking and networking and other programs are prohibitive. The exclusion of women from lifetime employment is buoyed by unequal distribution of unpaid work.

The Japanese employment system : adapting to a new economic environment

As of , women spend a grossly disproportionate amount of time on unpaid work in Japan, as compared to men. Many women in Japan are aware of these challenges, and some are refusing to marry as a result. Women are foregoing family, to secure higher paid, longer-term positions. Since the late s, the M curve shifted positively due to a range of factors including shifts in marriage age, new secondary labour opportunities and law reform. Women have come to dominate secondary labour and non-regular employment.

Cultural reasons explain why the EEO law succeeded where case law had failed. Firstly, there is a cultural expectation in Japan for employees to resolve their differences outside of the court system through internal processes and negotiation. The effect of the EEO statute on company practices and female labour force participation was dramatic.

Women in unprecedented numbers began accessing secondary labour after the law passed. Women moved from family work, piece work and agricultural work into the more formal work structures of part-time and dispatch work over the period. The EEO law did not increase the hiring of married or single women into the lifetime employment system.

The EEO law was assisted by other anti-discriminatory laws allowing women a more secure place in secondary labour. Changes to the Labor Standards Act in for instance, made it easier for women to access flexible jobs.


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The result of these laws, along with a slow shift in culture, has seen Japanese women gain a steadily increasing foothold in secondary labour, with female labour force participation rising steadily from till The longer term historical trends paint an even more dramatic picture.

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