Volume 85 (2012) Issue 2 Pages 57-73
In this paper, we analyze the current situation of international marriage in the Tokai region, which is one of Japan’s most industrialized regions and has a higher rate of international marriage than the national average. We used Vital Statistics of Japan for the region’s prefectures (Gifu, Shizuoka, Aichi, and Mie Prefectures) and data from our mailed questionnaire for municipalities to examine the factors of international marriage related to geographical background. These investigations were carried out through correlation and regression analyses at the prefecture, daily-life area, and municipality levels. Consequently, three key findings emerged. First, the Tokai prefectures have different characteristics of spouse nationality in international marriages than those of Japan as a whole. Second, the municipalities with a high international marriage rate are located in underpopulated areas in mountainous and peninsular regions as well as in the highly industrialized areas, especially large cities. Third, the correlation and regression analyses of all 47 prefectures in Japan clarify that the disparities in the sex ratio of unmarried persons, the characteristics of an area’s industrialization, and the foreign population are geographical background factors determining the incidence of international marriages. However, as the geographical scale of the analysis became smaller, almost no meaningful geographical background factor could be identified at either the daily-life area or municipal level in the Tokai region.