A strategy that uses the productive performance of a manufacturing site (or genba), noted as a strength of Japan’s manufacturing industry by Fujimoto (2003), might also be called a capability-based cost leadership strategy (CBCL strategy). In the 1990s, this strategy ceased to function due to environment changes, and the international competitiveness of Japan’s manufacturing industry declined. As a means of breaking through those circumstances, Fujimoto emphasized strengthening market performance and choosing a differentiation strategy for appealing to consumers based on high product quality. In the end, however, the performance of Japan’s manufacturing industry is restored after the environment changed to become favorable to a CBCL strategy such as rising labor costs in newly developing countries and a shift to a weaker yen. This suggests that many Japanese manufacturers could not shift to differentiation strategies based on enhanced competitiveness in the market, and CBCL strategies were left in place.
Many motorcycle dealers are family businesses, and they are rather oriented to short-term sales and do not operate only on logic without an emotional stake. Harley-Davidson Japan (HDJ) set up an authorized dealership system made up only of dealers with no capital relationship and did not directly manage dealers. This paper examines the period from 1991 to 2008, when Toshifumi Okui was the CEO of HDJ, during which time HDJ maintained top market share among large motorcycle companies in Japan and was a successful example of distribution system integration for other motorcycle manufacturers. For the dealers to implement HDJ’s intentions, the formal side of HDJ’s distribution system integration focused on the institutionalization of a “no control sales zero policy” and a “multilayer human relationship building policy.” However, critical to these were informal handwritten letters from the top-level management and the “Tokyo Court.”
With cosmetics, one cannot determine at a glance exactly what product a person is using. This paper analyzes the impact of a consumer network on cosmetics, which are goods that are not conspicuous. Comments in word-of-mouth websites for cosmetics is used as a proxy variable for purchasing behavior, and the relationship between a consumer network and purchasing behavior in a social network is analyzed. In cosmetics, which are not conspicuous, this paper has confirmed that consumers exhibit the same purchasing behavior as when they are in a relationship with structural equivalence within a network and not just in relationships with cohesion.
This document analyzes the evolution of policy-related discussions in open source software by using several projects’ policy mailing list archives and focusing on the Debian Project. More specifically, it utilizes approximately 70,000 pieces of mail exchanged since the end of the 1990s, investigating the rise and fall in activity and what sort of topics was discussed. The results of this paper’s inquiry suggest that mail volumes peaked in 2005, that policy discussions were led and mainly contributed to by a relatively small subset of persons who only posted related to policy, and that overall mailing list traffic (not only related to policy) declined after 2006, possibly due to a transfer of discussion to Wikis, chats, and other such platforms.