This article defines the East Asian food systems as chains of food production, supply and consumption in East Asia, and analyzes the structural characteristics and dynamics. First, to clarify the concept, this paper presents two analytical viewpoints of the East Asian food systems as a “collective entity” (comprehending each nation’s food system separately) and as a “joint entity” (an intersection of each nation’s food system through intra-regional food trade), and describes each of the structural characteristics and dynamics with statistical data. As for the “collective entity,” its structural characteristics involve Westernization and sophistication of diets in East Asian countries. With regard to the “joint entity,” one of its structural characteristics is a trade expansion in processed foods exported from China and ASEAN states and imported to Japan. Second, in order to illuminate the deployment of Japanese agribusinesses that have led the trade growth of processed foods, this article focuses on umeboshi, Japanese plum with a long history of foreign trade, and analyzed the roll-out of the develop-and-import schemes by the umeboshi processors. As the base of the develop-and-import schemes has moved from Taiwan to China in the 1990s, this article has looked at the transfer process in depth, and found that important factors are cultural and political distances that affect business relations between umeboshi processors as micro-level agents, in the midst of such macro-scale movement as economic development in East Asia.
This article aims to discuss the location types and location patterns of the R&D institutions of manufacturing enterprises in Shanghai. Such R&D institutions are classified into four location types according to the location relationship between them and other organizations: Headquarters-Production type, Headquarters type, Production type, and Independent type, among which the Headquarters-Production type is the most common. Most R&D institutions are concentrated in industrial zones or hi-tech parks. However, there are differences in industry and location pattern among the various types of R&D institutions. The Headquarters-Production and Production types are most common in the equipment and chemical industries with a wide distribution throughout the surburbs. The location patterns of the Headquarters and Independent types are similar: they are most common in the industrial zones near the central city. Various location factors lead to the diversity in location types and patterns seen in R&D institutions. Enterprises pay great attention to the need for all of their organizations to cooperate when establishing R&D institutions. As an enterprise grows, organizational separation is inevitable, leading to a variety of R&D location types. In this process, limited land scale and rising land costs in urban cities become important factors that accelerate the surburbanization of R&D institutions. Furthermore, the need for human resources, and the well-developed transport systems and communication networks in Shanghai make it unnecessary to be close to local universities or research institutes. In addition, regional image has also aroused concern and has become an important factor in the choice of R&D location.
The goal of this study is to examine the background and characteristics of the childcare culture in Okinawa, Japan. Particular attention is focused on the implementation of policy changes by the Japanese central government in reaction to Japan's Child Welfare Act. Specifically, we clarify the historical background of the childcare culture in Okinawa, as well as discuss the conflict posed by the aforementioned policy changes. Okinawa's childcare culture came about as the result of international and national influences. In the international context, with the American occupation of Okinawa after the Second World War, American-style educational policies, such as the preschool kindergarten system, became a priority for the Okinawa government. In the national context, the application of the Child Welfare Act by Japan's central government, as well as a shortage of authorized nursery centers, was instrumental in formulating Okinawa's childcare culture. As a result, the majority of Okinawa's five-year-old children now attend kindergarten, making it possible for them to make friends and prepare for their future elementary-school education. Children in dual-income families, however, have faced difficulty in receiving after-school care, since many public kindergartens closed earlier than nursery centers did. Traditionally, dual-income families have received after-school care services after kindergartens closed; however, after 1997, institutionalization of after-school care programs by the central government led to a new problem. For full-time working mothers attempting to balance their respective job and family responsibilities, local-government-organized public kindergartens' extended services were found to be inconvenient. As a result, a conflict occurred in Okinawa between the local childcare culture and the central government policy.
A geomorphological survey map of the Arakawa Lowland (the lower Arakawa River basin in the Kanto Plain, central Japan) documents several groups of paleomeanders suggestive of channel shifts of the Arakawa River during historical times (last ca. 2,000 years). However, the sequence and timing of these changes of the river are unclear. I examined geomorphological features of paleomeanders and lithological analyses of natural levee deposits, along with historical records on channel modifications, to summarize the current state of knowledge. I differentiate four groups of paleomeanders with different meander wavelengths along the present Arakawa River. The set with the smallest wavelengths is on the Moto-Arakawa River, considered to be a distributary prior to river modifications starting in the 17th century. The second smallest is of late 19th century derived from earlier topographic maps. The set with middle-sized wavelengths can be correlated with the main trunk in the Middle Ages, and the set with the largest wavelengths is suggested to be from an ancient large river that combined the flows from the Tone and Arakawa Rivers. Lithological analyses of deposits along the large paleomeander indicate sediment input from the Tone River watershed. More historical and geomorphological evidence and dating results are required to confirm these arguments.