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Local Voices, National Issues
The Impact of Local Initiative in Japanese Policy-Making
edited by Sheila A. Smith, East-West Center

“Richly empirical and informative.”
Kuniko Fujita in Social Science Japan Journal

“A collection of essays notable for the coherence of their objectives, the richness of their content, and the uniformly even quality of their written presentation. The four issues studied here . . . offer well-placed windows on the dynamics of center-local relations in contemporary Japanese politics. . . . Specialists in Japanese politics will surely welcome the fresh air this collection breathes into an area in the field that has been rather quiet over the past two decades. Students of local autonomy in other advanced industrial nations may also find much of service here, and the clarity of writing will make the book useful for upper-division undergraduates as well.”
Robin M. LeBlanc in Governance

Local Voices, National Issues represents a new wave of scholarly interest in local politics and center-local relations in Japan that has been stimulated by the end of the cold war, increasing internationalization, and the issue of “reform.” Katherine Tegtmeyer Pak studies nongovernmental organizations and local internationalization; Sheila A. Smith analyzes the controversial issue of U.S. military bases in Okinawa under former Governor Ota; Patricia L. Maclachlan deals with calls for reform brought about by revelations of corruption and unethical practices among local bureaucrats; and Theodore J. Gilman explores urban redevelopment politics and policy-making in Omuta. Ellis S. Krauss provides a history of scholarship on local politics and center-local relations in his introduction, and Patricia G. Steinhoff prepares the groundwork for future research by exploring the various relationships between kan (officials) and min (people) found in the new wave of research presented here.

Published by Center for Japanese Studies, University of Michigan
Michigan Monographs in Japanese Studies No. 31
Published 2000, 147 pp.
ISBN 0 939512 04 1, hardback, £24.00