Date of Graduation
Despite the rapid industrialization and high rates of economic growth that Japan experienced for much of the postwar period, there have been relatively few attempts by English-language researchers to investigate Japan's domestic space-economy at the regional scale. This dissertation examines the process of uneven development in Japan from 1965 to 1994. The conceptual framework for the analysis is a regional political economy approach, combining theories of uneven development with recent work by Michael Webber and David Rigby on regional profit rates in manufacturing and the determinants of profit rate change over time. In addition, insights from the recent literature on labor geography are also integrated into the conceptual framework. The first part of the analysis estimated profit rates and values for three determinants of profit rate change for forty-six prefectures in Japan. The results analysis indicate that during the 1965 to 1994 period the scale of the core manufacturing region underwent several major periods of transformation as Japan's position in the global economy shifted. The second part of the analysis examined the role of labor on regional variations in the profit rate and its determinants. The results of the second part of the analysis suggest that Japanese labor played an important role in the both the timing and extent of the scale restructuring of the industrial core region. The results point to the importance of considering the links between geographic scales when theorizing the processes of industrial restructuring. Japanese labor, along with manufacturers and the Japanese state, influenced the ways in which these scales were articulated and transformed. The results demonstrate the utility of a regional political economy approach for describing the historical economic geography of Japan.
Banasick, Shawn Michael, "Beyond the workplace: The uneven development of the Japanese space -economy and the role of labor, 1965â€“1994." (2001). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 8439.