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South Korea’s Explicit Family Policy and Japan’s Implicit ApproachSōma Naoko

South Korea has reformed its family policy to respond to its declining birthrate, aging population, and other changes, such as the increase in international marriages. Sōma Naoko examines the situation in South Korea to shed light on approaches to family policy that might suit Japan’s needs.

Striking the Right Balance in a Changing East AsiaKawashima Shin

I have had occasion lately to frequently visit the Kinmen islands—a small archipelago administered by the Republic of China (Taiwan), located quite close to Xiamen (Amoy), a city on the southeast coast of China. In 1949, the People’s Liberation Army of China launched an amphibious landing to capture the islands, but the attack was repelled by the ROC forces. This victory became symbolic for the RO…

Insights from Kyū’s KitchenMiya Kazuho

Kyū EikanKyū Eikan was born in Tainan in 1924 to a Taiwanese father and a Japanese mother, when Taiwan was under Japanese colonial rule. He attended high school in Taipei and graduated from the Faculty of Economics at Tokyo Imperial University. In 1946 he returned to Taiwan and took part in the independence movement before fleeing to Hong Kong to escape the Kuomintang’s crackdown. He moved to Japa…

The East Asian Textbook IssueKawashima Shin

Japan has repeatedly experienced friction with its neighbors, particularly China and South Korea, over the contents of its history textbooks. Kawashima Shin, a scholar specializing in Asian diplomatic history (and a member of the Nippon.com editorial committee), puts this sticky problem in historical perspective.

Elpida and the Failure of Japan Inc.Inoue Kōki

With Elpida Memory filing for bankruptcy in February of this year, Japan has essentially abandoned the DRAM (dynamic random access memory) semiconductor business that helped power the growth of the nation’s big electronics firms in the 1980s. What lessons does the Elpida debacle offer for Japanese industrial policy going forward?

Taiwan’s President Ma Wins a Second TermMatsuda Yasuhiro

Ma Ying-jeou of the Kuomintang won a second term in Taiwan’s recent presidential election. Matsuda Yasuhiro, a specialist in Taiwan affairs, considers the significance of this victory for Taiwan’s relations with mainland China and with the United States and Japan.

A Year for Change in the “1972 Setup”Kawashima Shin

The year 2012 is an important one on the global calendar, with national leadership going up for election or scheduled to change hands in a number of key countries. East Asia is no exception in this regard: China will see a new set of leaders take the reins, and Taiwan will hold its presidential election in January.(*) The South Korean president serves a five-year term, which means Lee Myung-bak wi…

The Uncertain Future of Japan’s Machine Tools IndustryHikosaka Masao

Sometimes referred to as “mother machines,” machine tools are vital to the manufacture of components for everything from cars to domestic appliances. In 2010, Japan was overtaken by China as the world’s number-one producer of these machines by value—a position it had held for 27 years. With Taiwan and South Korea also catching up fast, what does the future hold for the Japanese machine tools industry?

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