KOSAKA Kenji Kansei Gakuin University , Faculty of Sociology , Professor, 社会学部, 教授 (60027977)
NAKAMICHI Minoru Nara Women's University , Faculty of Letters , Associate Professor, 文学部, 助教授 (40067690)
NAKAMURA Hiroshi Kobe Gakuin University, Faculty of Law , Professor, 法学部, 教授 (40093653)
YODA Hiroshi Kobe University, College of General Education, Professor, 教養部, 教授 (50093539)
AIBA Juichi Nara Women's University, Faculity of Letters, Professor, 文学部, 教授 (60030037)
|Budget Amount *help
¥15,400,000 (Direct Cost: ¥15,400,000)
Fiscal Year 1990: ¥2,000,000 (Direct Cost: ¥2,000,000)
Fiscal Year 1989: ¥6,600,000 (Direct Cost: ¥6,600,000)
Fiscal Year 1988: ¥6,800,000 (Direct Cost: ¥6,800,000)
This research was conducted over a three year period and was carried out through by employing three large scale questionnaires that aimed at grasping an overall picture of local politics in japan. Thus research was not limited to one single area, but extended to cover most of the kinki are, Tottori and Niigata Prefectures and all major cities not included in these areas with a population of over one million.
In 1988 the first two questionnaires, addressed to 8628 assemblymen and 387 government leaders (mayors, governors, etc.) were sent out by post and of these 35% and 46% respectively were returned completed. In the following year, another questionnaire of a similar nature was sent out to 5226 voters in the same areas ; 35% of these were returned completed. Research of substance on local politics in Japan has yet to be conducted. Thus, in this sense, these three questionnaires provided vital information on similar subjects from three major participants in local politics. This will enab
le a comparison of perceptions surrounding local politics from differing levels, Consequently, it is hoped that this will lead to a more overall three dimensional conception of the politics that play such an important role in grassroots society in Japan.
Results were statistically tabulated and various analyses of these calculations were then carried out by members of the group. Findings from these analyses were subsequently presented in papers written by the members. Although not all the findings can be listed here, some of the more interesting findings are as follows. Nakamura, in focusing on social strata identity and feeling of distributive injustice according to party affiliation, found that rather than variables such as income and education, the actual preference showed for a political party seemed to influence strongly people's perception of society.
In concluding he notes that in discussing the future roles and successes of political parties, the measurement of the feeling of distributive injustice, in particular, could prove to be very explanatory. Aiba, in his paper on nonpartisans, shows through the use of multi-variate analyses the weight demographic factors such as age, occupation, years of residence etc. And membership in certain social groups have in influencing a person in either supporting or not supporting a political party. He points to the growing number of nonpartisans and the eventual influence they will have on society in the future. As a comment on more recent events in politics such as the rash of scandals involving money and sex, Kent's paper on shame elucidates the rancor felt by the public in relation to the improper behavior recently of politicians. This report also points to a growing feeling of discord among communities as Japanese society becomes more urban and more technology oriented.
Other papers cover a wide range of topics including such subjects as the socialization processes of those who aspire to politics and the policy making processes of those in politics. As this study was carried out by researchers in a number of different disciplines, the data obtained covers a large number of politically related topics. The full meaning of the abundant and rich data reaped from this study has yet to be realized but the interim reports indicate that these results have brought light to a number of hitherto unknowns and also added body to some already constructed frames. No doubt, further more in-depth analyses of this data will lay some important grounds for future research. Less