In view of the growing number of elderly persons with dementia in Japan, community-based nursing services were established under the revised Japanese Long-Term Care Insurance Act in 2005. These services are designed to provide support for elderly persons who require nursing care so that they may continue to live with personal dignity in their accustomed communities. To achieve such safe, high-quality community living, the elderly need various types of informal care from neighborhood residents and community organizations in addition to nursing services. This requires increasing understanding of elderly persons with dementia and the creation of mutual support networks in the local community. To this end, providers of community-based nursing services need to build relationships and cooperation with the local community through contributions to community activities. This article describes a case study investigating relationships and cooperation with the local community by providers of community-based nursing service in Nagasaki City, Japan. The following main points were identified. First, an analysis of the contents of an external evaluation report on nursing service providers exposed areal variations in the implementation of relationships and community initiatives (exchange activities outside nursing care facilities, collaborative projects, etc.) through active promotion among the community by nursing service providers. In particular, nursing service providers tend to select nearby residents' associations as exchange and cooperation partners and have enjoyed a variety of positive results through such relationships, but with clear areal variations. Next, a number of nursing care providers and communities that have demonstrated an active attitude toward community relationships and cooperation were investigated, assuming 1) the environmental conditions of the area and 2) the management principles of the nursing service providers as areal variation factors. The findings indicated that in addition to the motivations of nursing service providers for community relationships and cooperation being informed by their respective management principles, the actual approaches they employ are predicated to a significant extent on the environmental conditions of their area. This suggests that in order to deepen relationships and cooperation with the local community, nursing service providers not only need to establish an appropriate attitude and operational system but also need to adopt relationship and cooperation techniques designed with full consideration of local characteristics.
Soon after trade liberalization in the late 1980s, a flurry of Japanese firms entered the Australian beef sector by adopting a develop-and-import scheme. They established feedlots and abattoirs to provide chilled long-term grain-fed beef for Japanese household consumption. Twenty years later, the volume of beef imported from Australia has more than doubled, but most Japanese firms have divested themselves of their operations. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the transition of industry arrangements in Japan–Australia beef trade over the past two decades. Initially, Japanese upstream investment was introduced under the following conditions: 1) Japan had a huge but unique market for long-term grain-fed beef. 2) Australia had the potential for low-cost production, but 3) Australian firms did not have sufficient ability to produce and market grain-fed beef. However, those conditions have changed through various pathways. This paper explains the transition in terms of the changes in market environments, production conditions, and different abilities between Japanese and Australian firms focusing on the firms' behaviors. From the late 1980s, the rush of beef imports through Japanese upstream investment resulted in a price decline of nearly 50%. Although the price decline spurred Japanese beef consumption, it was only the food service sector that expanded and household consumption shrunk to the preliberalization level caused by beef-related food scares in 1996 and 2001. In the household consumption sector, the demand for imported long-term grain-fed beef declined as domestic dairy steers became more competitive in quality and cost. Instead, demand for the short-term grain-fed beef grew in both Australian and other Asian markets, especially from the 2000s. Meanwhile, the conditions for low-cost production deteriorated in Australia. The increase in feedlots along with the occasional drought doubled or tripled feed grain prices from the late 1990s. The price gap including wages also diminished as a result of the booming economy in Australia in contrast to the prolonged recession in Japan. Furthermore, Japanese firms faced competitive pressures from Australian rivals, especially from US-owned multinationals. From the mid-1990s, the Australian beef sector was modernized through rapid investments by US conglomerates such as Cargill and Swift. In addition, the demand shift for grain-fed beef not only decreased the significance of the unique Japanese long-term feeding technique but also gave their Australian rivals the advantage of a broader sales network. The transition of the Japan–Australia beef arrangement reflects the characteristics of the commodity. Although Japan had unique consumption and production preferences for long-term grain-fed beef, beef is a highly globalized commodity under US dominance. The production was easy to catch up with technically and financially, and the market tended to expand globally. However, the transition also reflects the broader background to Japanese food sourcing: an expanding food service industry; diffusion of Japanese food culture; and lower buying power of Japan.
In the late 1980s, the European Union (EU) shifted from sectoral (or agricultural) to territorial (or integral) rural policies. The fundamental ideas behind this shift are presented in The Future of Rural Society (1988), which emphasized a bottom-up, endogenous approach for rural development. These directions were formalized under the Liaisons Entre Actions Développement de l'Economie Rurale (LEADER) program. Initially, the EU considered this program “a laboratory for rural development, ” with a limited budget. Nevertheless, as this program achieved a certain degree of success, the EU enforced it and made it mainstream (currently, the fourth stage of the program [2007–2013] is being implemented). This paper reviews studies and discussions on bottom-up, endogenous rural development in Europe, focusing on the LEADER program. Because of the difficulties that an exhaustive survey presents, this paper focuses on three aspects of those studies. First, the relationship between actors involved in the planning and management of this program was examined. Previous studies dealing with this theme found significant effects of their power relations and called for framing strong measures for social inclusion. Second, the ways in which partnerships in this program were formed were investigated, and it was clarified that the formation of effective partnerships requires time and professional animators to support these processes. Third, evaluation methods for this program were analyzed. As the LEADER program progressed, its evaluation methods came to reflect its principles and strategies. Additionally, some scholars insisted on the introduction of participative evaluation along with learning and empowerment through the evaluative processes. Studies of the LEADER program tackled not only empirical analyses and evaluations but also theoretical explanations. In particular, two theoretical enquiries were conducted. First, the meaning of places/territories in rural development was examined. Ray's (1998) “culture economy” approach illustrated an entire mechanism whereby economic development was exploiting the cultures and identities of places/territories. Second, some authors tried to overcome the dualism of endogenous/exogenous development with network approaches. These empirical and theoretical findings showed that a number of elements in the LEADER program were strongly interrelated. Therefore, Ray (2001, 2006) attempted to provide an integrative rural development theory in the European context, called “neo-endogenous rural development. These studies provided not only important concepts for inducing bottom-up, endogenous rural development in contemporary Japan but also research strategies for devising more effective or alternative rural development theories based on both the actual situation under the current rural development schemes and on social theories.
Using the elderly ratio as the sole variable for the analysis of the spatial distribution pattern of the aged population has the danger of underestimating the seriousness of the aging problem, particularly in urban areas that usually have a larger elderly population than rural areas but a low elderly ratio due to the large size of the base population. To improve the understanding of the spatial distribution of the aging population, a choropleth map was first constructed with respect to the elderly ratio and the density of the elderly population to highlight any distinctive features in their spatial distribution patterns and the relationship between them. We then investigated the spatial correlation between the two indices to classify the individual areas into different categories of aging society using the bivariate local Moran statistic. The results highlighted some aspects of aging society that would have been difficult to detect using only the elderly ratio. These include the existence of neighborhoods with high elderly ratios and high densities of elderly population in the urban center, and high elderly ratios and low densities in rural communities. Additionally, the presence of neighborhoods with low elderly ratios and high densities of elderly population surrounding the urban center were detected, which were difficult to identify using only choropleth maps. Finally, this paper discusses the impact of the modifiable areal unit problem on the analysis and concluded that the data aggregated at the basic grid square (1-km×1-km) scale would be suitable for the analysis of aging society conducted at the prefectural level.
The purpose of this paper is to clarify hazard migrations caused by the great Tone River flood in Gunma prefecture in 1910 using official documents of the prefecture. The most afflicted areas were along upper streams in Gunma prefecture, which had still not undergone river development programs by the time of the great flood in 1910. Because serious damage occurred in Oura, Sawa, and Tano counties where the main stream of the Tone River connected to feeder streams and Gunma and Agatsuma counties had some bilateral feeders, 280 people died and 24 were missing in the prefecture. Migrations to Hokkaido, Korea, and Manchuria were fewer traditionally than from other areas because there was a demand for agricultural labor to produce numerous commercial crops in Gunma prefecture. The number of migrants from Gunma prefecture gradually increased around 1900. There were migrations to Korea from Tano county due to significant damage caused by the great flood in 1910. Information on migrant recruitment to Korea was obtained from newspapers because Toyo Takushoku Company did not become large enough to provide publicity in Japanese. Migrations to Hokkaido took place in accordance with the conservation policy of the prefectural government and at the invitation of the previous governor, Kusakabe Sozaburo, who had left Gunma prefecture. Because Hokkaido actively accepted migrations caused by the great flood, it decided to set up an association of migrants to Hokkaido to alleviate hardships in flood-affected villages. Hazard migration after the Tone River flood of 1910 tended to displace people because otherwise they would only be able to eke out a living in counties where, although few people died, extensive farmland and many dwellings were submerged by the great flood.