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Comprehensive series of articles on themes too broad or complex to be addressed in a single post.

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Auto Industry Dominates Japanese Companies’ Research ExpenditureJapan Data

To meet the challenges of such areas as environmental regulations, support for advancing automobile technology, and development of connected cars, the ratio of research and development expenditure in the automobile industry is increasing compared to other industries.

Japanese Rice Cookers a Big Success in ChinaJapan Data

Japan’s rice cooker exports seem promising. In 2017, they reached a record high of ¥10.18 billion; however, the export volume in units is about half what it was at its peak. In other words, there has been a shift in purchasing to higher-end models.

The “Double Care” Generation Looking After Both Children and ParentsJapan Data

Caring simultaneously for children and parents is becoming more common in Japan. Three-quarters of those facing “double care” feel that public services are inadequate.

Capital Punishment in JapanJapan Data

Japan has carried out executions of 89 death-row inmates since 2000. The standards used to decide whom to execute are not clear and seem to reflect the particular outlook of the justice minister serving at the time.

Over 10% of Japanese Workers Get Less than 11 Hours Rest and Recuperation Between ShiftsJapan Data

Statistics from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications show that more than 10% of Japanese workers have intervals between shifts of less than 11 hours.

Underappreciated and Overpriced? Japanese Rice Exports SluggishJapan Data

Japanese food is gaining global popularity as a healthy dining option. However, Japan exported just ¥3.2 billion worth of rice, the staple grain of the diet, in 2017. It is said that Japanese rice is “delicious but too expensive,” and foreign demand has been difficult to stimulate significantly. It has also proven difficult to implement incentives encouraging Japanese farmers to grow rice for export.

Some of Japan’s Longstanding Companies Have Been in Business for CenturiesJapan Data

A survey conducted by a private research firm shows that 3,343 businesses in Japan have a history that dates back 150 years or more. Prevalent among these firms are sake brewers, traditional inns, and kimono and fabric retailers.

Vending Machines in Losing Battle Against Convenience StoresJapan Data

Now it is easy to buy all kinds of products in convenience stores, Japanese consumers are less likely to turn to the country’s famous vending machines.

Too Few Female Doctors: Japan Ranks Last Among OECD NationsJapan Data

In 2016, women accounted for just 21.1% of all doctors in Japan, the lowest level among all OECD nations.

Japanese Lose Their Taste for RiceJapan Data

Over the last 50 years, consumption of rice, the main staple in Japanese people’s diets, has halved.

Japan’s Typhoons: Peak Numbers in August, Peak Damage in SeptemberJapan Data

Almost every summer typhoons approaching or hitting Japan are in the news. Around 26 cyclonic storms are generated every year, but the typhoons that cause the heaviest damage are concentrated in September.

Politics a Man’s Role in Japan?Japan Data

As of the end of 2017, the ratio of female prefectural assembly members was a mere 10.1%. In May 2018, a law on promotion of gender equality in the political field was established; however, this aim remains far from being realized.

Japanese Drinkers Stick Near to BeerJapan Data

Consumption of beer has been falling since it peaked in 1994. However, that gap in the market has been filled by similar drinks—happōshu low-malt beer and the “third beer” beer-flavored beverages. Beerlike beverages with a golden color, strong carbonation, and froth remain popular.

Pachinko and Slot Machine Addiction in JapanJapan Data

The Integrated Resorts Implementation Bill establishing IR operational rules was passed by the Diet in July 2018. The first casino established under the law is expected to open in the mid-2020s, and this prospect has raised the need to step up measures to deal with gambling addiction, including addiction to pachinko and “pachislot” machines.

Timeline for July 2018Japan Timeline

Death sentences are carried out on 13 Aum Shinrikyō cult members, more than 200 people die in heavy rain in western Japan, and Kumagaya in Saitama Prefecture records Japan’s highest ever temperature of 41.1 degrees. Look back on Japan’s top news stories in July 2018.

Japan’s Most Congested Train LinesJapan Data

A recent report by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism on train crowding found that the 11 train lines that surpass the 180% congestion rate, set as the upper limit for peak travel hours, were all located in the greater Tokyo area.

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