I analyzed how well the Geographic Information System (GIS) is recognized among school teachers and how it is utilized in schools. I also investigated what problems have occurred when GIS has been introduced in schools. Questionnaires were used to collect data from elementary school teachers in Nishinomiya, teachers of social studies in junior high schools in Nishinomiya and Kobe, and teachers of geography, history, and civic studies in high schools in Hyogo Prefecture. GIS was most recognized by the high school teachers, while it was least recognized by the elementary school teachers. On the other hand, teachers in elementary schools used computers at far more advanced levels in their classes compared to their counterparts in high schools. Thus, there is dissonance between high schools and elementary schools in relation to recognition of GIS and actual computer use in classes. I found that GIS is not well utilized in education due to lack of equipment (such as computers), educational software and data, and teachers' skills. However, both equipment and educational software and data have gradually become more available. Therefore, the most important task to promote GIS in education is improving skills among teachers. Teacher development is the key to the solution.
This paper analyses the locational changes in head and branch offices of large enterprises in Osaka prefecture during the 1990s, when rationalization of branch networks progressed remarkably. In Osaka in the latter half of the 1990s, along with an increase in number of head offices, there has been a reduction in number of branch offices as a result of office closures, mergers and bankruptcies. Moreover, administrative-functions of the remaining branch offices have been transferred to Tokyo. It was observed that office relocation pattern switched towards decentralization in the latter half of the 1990s. However, there have been few cases that decision-making sections of enterprises being transferred towards the suburbs, and the decentralization has not resulted in the emergence of independent industrial spaces in the neighboring regions. The relocation patterns of head and branch offices clearly reflect the ways in which the enterprises were reorganized during the period from the first to the second half of the 1990s. On the one hand, head offices tended to relocate to areas that reinforce close cooperation within their own enterprises, so to speed up decision-making processes. On the other hand, branch offices tended to relocate to areas that minimize rent expenditures. While company restructuring and mergers continued due to prolonged depression, many new large-scale office buildings were completed during the same period, leading office rental market into a state of excess supply. As such, both demand and supply sides contributed in stimulating office relocations and caused changes in the business districts. Notably, the differences in factors of relocation between head offices and branch offices had an important effect in the changes in office relocation patterns in the latter half of the 1990s.