The purpose of this paper is to examine the recent demographic changes in local small cities in Japan in these 30 years and to discuss their causes from the viewpoints of industrial structure, social status and urbanization. Population in local small city regions has either decreased or been stable over these 30 years. General trend of decadal population change was characterized by sharp decrease in 1960s, small increase in 1970s, and stableness in 1980s. The spatial distribution of the regional demographic change represents Japanese core-periphery structure. Increasing population is common in the core regions while population decreases in peripheral regions. However, in single-industrial towns or local industrial towns, the population decrease has been accelerated gradually. Today, the positive correlation of population change between core cities and the rural areas surrounding the cities is high in general. However, if we distinguish growing cities form declining ones, positive correlation between the city and surrounding area is not clear in the former group, and its high in the later group. Population has increased in most industrial cities, while most commercial cities lost their population. When economic activity in the cities went under depression, the increase in industrial cities is decelerated and the decrease in commercial cities is accelerated. In the local small cities, the basic industries are usually primary industry, manufacturing, retailing and consumer service industries. The positive correlation between the occupation rate of manufacturing industry and population change is high. Positive correlation of population change to occupation rate of retailing and consumer service industries is clear but not so high as that to the occupation rate of manufacturing industry. On the other hand, the correlation between the occupation rate of primary industries and population change is not remarkable. Wholesaling and producer service industries are very minor in local small cities and the correlation between those occupation rate in a local small city and population change is low as well. Demographic status is one of the decisive factors for their population change in local small cities. Younger population has a positive correlation, aged and woman has high negative correlation to the population change. Emigration of younger generation raises the ratio of aged and woman population. It is important for local small cities to bar the younger generation from emigration and to let the emigrated return to the cities in order to maintain or to increase their population.
Associations of people form the same prefecture (kenjin-kai) are often thought of as social groups that are spontaneously established by immigrants to heal their homesickness. In fact, those associations are organized for some clear purposes related to the cities where the members of associations, recruitment of members starts. All the members are natives of the same prefecture, yet they cannot already have known each other before entering their associations, because their hometowns are various municipalities in those prefectures. This paper clarifies how the association of people from the same prefecture has relation to the context of the city, and then focuses on the establishment process and activities of the association of people from Kochi prefecture (Amagasaki Kochi Kenjin-kai) in Amagasaki city, Hyogo prefecture. Amagasaki, a well-known industrial city in Japan, absorbed many immigrants, who generally became factory workers in the high-growth period (1955-1973), including immigrants from Kochi prefecture. Many associations of people from the same prefecture were organized in this time. Amagasaki Kochi Kenjin-kai was organized by a candidate for the Amagasaki city council in 1963; he was a native of Kochi prefecture. The candidate planned this association as his political supporters' organization. Thus Amagasaki Kochi Kenjin-kai was established for a political purpose related to the city. However, he did not know where people from Kochi prefecture lived in this city. So, for example, he used the resident's cards of citizens of the city, and found 2,308 wo/men from Kochi prefecture, of whom 557 wo/men entered this association. This candidate lost the 1963 election, this association emphasized a new purpose: welfare services for people from the same prefecture, especially for young workers. In this period, because immigrant young workers' solitude in urban life was an important social problem, the new purpose of the association was timely. In 1971, not only to recruit new members but also to meet the request of Amagasaki city in its labor policy, Kochi Kenjin-kai investigated people who had a domicile of origin in Kochi prefecture, using the resident's cards of the city again; 2,264 wo/men were found out. After the high growth period ended in 1973, the number of immigrants moving in to Amagasaki city decreased. Amagasaki Kochi Kenjin-kai gradually lost the necessity to regard the city as important. The way of gathering members also changed to personal networks centered on each officer and member of the association. Also, the number of members who lived out of the city was rising. The main activity of the association became enhancing mutual friendship. Tendencies in other associations of people from the same prefecture in Amagasaki city were generally similar to those of Amagasaki Kochi Kenjin-kai.
Es scheint mir, dass seit Mitte der 60er Jahre die deutsche Raumordnungspolitik - im Gegensatz zu ihrem japanischen Pendat - auf der Baisis eines wissenschaftlichen Konzepts konsequent durchgefuhrt worden ist. Das Grundidee der deutschen Raumordnung war und ist die Schaffung der gleichwertigen Lebensverhaltnisse fur die Bewohner in allen Teilgebieten Deutschlands mit Hilfe des Instruments "Punktachsiales Entwicklung skonzept". Erst in dem 1993 veroffentlichten "Raumordnungspolitischen Orientierungsrahmen" ist das Stadtenetze-Konzept in Erganzung des bestehenden Zentrale-Orte-Konzepts aufgetreten. Aus diesem Anlaβ haben die deutschen Geographen die Konzepte Zentrale-Orte und Stadtenetze in starkem Maβe wieder diskutiert. Ziel dieses Aufsatzes ist es, zu berichten und daruber nachzudenken, welchen Stellenwert das Zentrale-Orte-Konzept in der deutschen Raumordnungspolitik bis heute hat, und wie man es in Verbindung mit dem neuen Sadteneze-Konzept bringen kann. Es ist mir zweifelhaft, ob das Zentrale-Orte-Konzept als gleiches Instrument der Raumordnung nicht nur in landlichen Gebieten, sondern auch in den Verdichtungsraumen der alten und neuen Bundeslander zukunfitig noch als leistngsfahiges Konzept genutzt werden kann. Laβt es sich auch in dichter Verteilung von zentralen Orte effizient anwenden? Bemerkenswet ist, daβ das zentralortliche System, wie Blotevogel betont, auch in okologischer Hinsicht zukunftig noch eine bedeutsame Rolle spielen kann. Also wird die Theorie der zentralen Orte in der Raumordnungspolitik, wenn auch stark kritisiert und wissenschaftlich zunehmend hinterfragt, weither bestehen bleiben.