The change in the environment surrounding French regional policies can be interpreted in two ways: one is the change in intergovernmental relations during the transformation of administrative systems; and the other is the political emphasis on competitiveness. Under these new circumstances, French political actors execute regional policies to reinforce their competitiveness in multilevel intergovernmental relations. This paper examines the case of the Franche-Comté region. Franche-Comté is one of the most industrialized regions in France (both the proportions of number of laborers and added value of manufacturing are the highest in the country), but this region is suffering in the face of industrial conversion. The main industries in Franche-Comté (automobiles, watchmaking, glasses frames, etc.) are struggling, and local governments are supporting and promoting their reconversion. In terms of political systems, the political competencies related to regional economic development are distributed among the régions and intercommunalités. The régions play a significant role in the field of regional policies. The régions also play important roles in regional development in the field of budget. Traditional governments (local administrative organizations such as départements and communes) are less powerful in the area of regional policy. In the process of executing regional policies, the régions play a central role and tend to support areas that have the potential to develop. Other areas are supported by different government bodies such as the EU or départements. In this way, the internal balance in the régions is maintained. In the Franche-Comté region, influences of both old and new governments are important in the process of regional industrial conversion. The Franche-Comté région stimulated the conversion of microtechniques. The département and commune helped financially in the construction of the microtechniques center TEMIS and Grand Besançon (intercommunalité) manages TEMIS. Thus, multilevel intergovernmental relations are significant for regional policies and regional economies. In France, more rational distribution of competence has been discussed in recent years. However, it must be noted that multilevel political actors play very important roles in maintaining infraregional balance.
The purpose of this study was to clarify changes in ordering system of Chinese automobile company compared to that of car manufacturers in other countries and its influences on the selection and locations of suppliers in recent years. We investigated Geely automobile company in Zhejiang province, which is the largest private car manufacturer in China. Specifically, we researched two types of car: best-selling low-priced models; and middle to high class models released recently. Chinese manufacturers tend to order each automobile part from several suppliers to receive as low price as possible as a result of price competition. Geely, however, often orders them from a specific supplier when producing middle to high class models. In addition, it tends to buy completed parts from well-known, highly skilled international suppliers. As a result, while realizing the production of middle to high class models, the cost of parts is rising. This ordering system follows after international manufacturers, particularly Japanese companies. The location of suppliers is shifting from Zhejiang province with many small private suppliers toward the Changjiang delta including Shanghai and neighboring cities where many major international and national suppliers are based.
The assimilation policies of the Tokugawa Shogunate (Japan or Bakuhu) attempted to change the culture of the Ainu to the Wajin (traditional Japanese) style, such as hairstyles, clothing, and individual names. However, this acculturation process among the Ainu has not been studied in detail. The purpose of this study was to clarify the spatial and social acculturation process among the Ainu living on Iturup Island in the Kurile Islands of the northern Pacific from 1799 to 1801. The main findings can be summarized as follows. Ainu who had adopted the Wajin culture were found only in Shana settlement in 1799. However, by 1800 and 1801, 95.8% (23 of 24) of Ainu settlements had at least one person who used a Japanese name. At the household level, the number of households that included at least one person who used a Japanese name increased from 136 to 211 during 1800 and 1801. The percentage of individuals who used Japanese names among the Ainu population of Iturup Island was 18.5% (209 of 1,127) in 1800 and 35.4% (398 of 1,124) in 1801. There was a tendency for the percentage using Japanese names to be higher in settlements where offices for political and economic management were located than in settlements without such facilities. The percentage of individuals using Japanese names was the lowest in the north near the area under the political control of Imperial Russia. A majority of the children of household heads used Japanese names in 1800, most of whom were less than 10 years of age. However, by 1801 those adopting Japanese names in addition to Wajin customs and manners were mainly household heads, their spouses, and their children older than 16 years of age. The percentage of Japanese name users was 0% (0 of 33) among household heads who held managerial positions and 3.0% (9 of 300) among general household heads in 1800. However, by 1801, the percentage had increased to 64.1% (25 of 39) and 32.3% (94 of 291), respectively. The first users of Japanese names in a household were not always the heads but in many cases were the children of household heads in 1800. However, a trend was noted in the adoption of Japanese names among household members: the rate was higher among household members whose head used a Japanese name than among household members whose head used only an Ainu name. Ten influential Ainu, 35 subordinates, and 39 household members of subordinates were recorded on Iturup Island in 1801; nine of those 10 held managerial positions. There was a tendency for their subordinates and subordinates' household members to use only Ainu names when their superiors used only Ainu names and to use Japanese names when their superiors used Japanese names.
This paper analyzes the characteristics and factors of scenic streetscapes, which volunteer citizens researched and selected while participating in the 3rd Kyo-machiya Community-Building Survey from October 2008 to March 2010. The purpose of this survey was to identify the distribution of kyo-machiya, traditional wooden townhouses that are regarded as representative historical architecture in the city of Kyoto. In addition to determining the distribution of existing kyo-machiya throughout Kyoto, the 3rd survey also aimed at collecting detailed information on the façade designs and other features of the townhouses. Volunteers played an important role by giving their ideas from the citizens' viewpoint on how to conserve the city's landscape. At the end of each one-day survey, the volunteers spent time together presenting and discussing the information collected as well as illustrating and explaining their thoughts on good examples of streetscapes and historical landscape components. This survey collected geographic information on 1,070 scenic streetscapes and identified 47,735 kyo-machiya. Quantitative analysis of these streetscapes with the spatial distribution of kyo-machiya revealed the following characteristics. First, the citizen volunteers identified scenic streetscapes as not only traditional façades of kyo-machiya but also as everyday landscapes featuring shimotaya (modern kyo-machiya specifically for residential purposes) and terraced houses. Second, they highly evaluated areas rich in such “scenic streetscapes.” Those areas included Gion where numerous kyo-machiya with traditional façades are conserved and Nishijin where many typical kyo-machiya remain. We took a qualitative approach to investigate which factors led the citizen volunteers to select spots as scenic streetscapes by analyzing the remarks of both volunteers and local residents on scenic streetscapes and their impressions. The analysis showed that while the volunteers evaluated everyday streetscapes highly, the residents loved streetscapes that had not changed. In summary, to understand what constitutes scenic streetscapes, we need to conduct not only quantitative analysis of spatial distribution of the attributes of kyo-machiya but also qualitative analysis of how both citizen volunteers and residents evaluate streetscapes. We therefore argue that landscape conservation policies should consider both quantitative and qualitative analyses of the landscape.
In the present study, we estimated the winter temperature variations from 1830/31 to 2008/09 in the town of Kawanishi in the southern part of Yamagata prefecture using daily weather reports and observations documented in an old personal diary. Using historical weather reports, we computed the snowfall rate (percentage ratio of snowfall days to the total number of precipitation days) for each winter during the study period. Then, mean winter temperatures in Kawanishi were estimated using a simple linear regression analysis based on the relationship between the mean winter temperature and snowfall rate, which was computed from historical weather reports. The results of this analysis showed that there were several warm winters in the late 19th century. The warm winters were observed in a period extending from the late 1840s to the early 1850s, and a period in the late 1860s. The results also showed that the temperatures in those warm winters were similar to the average winter temperature for the period 1970/71–1999/2000. By comparing the time series of estimated temperatures to those of long-term historical instrumental temperature data since the late 19th century, we found that the variation in the estimated temperature correlated well with that of the instrumental temperature data. This indicates that the estimated results in the present study are highly reliable.
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