What's new

The Japanese Economy


29 Jul 2002
Scenario 1: you have to write a thesis (80-100 pages) about some aspect of the Japanese economy. What would you write about?
Scenario 2: you are a professor and must read a thesis (80-100 pages) about some aspect of the Japanese economy. What would you like to read about?

Basically I will have to write such a thesis next year, and I wonder what some interesting topics would be, something that hasn't been discussed much and wouldn't put a professor to sleep. :eek:

Any suggestions? I also welcome any ideas about sources on the Japanese economy (in English). I read Forbes, The Economist, Business Week, Japan Today.
Thanks in advance!
OK, I'm the devils advocate here.

Boring reading material. Mostly high strung foreignors that think they know what they're talking about or feel they have some kind of knowledge of what's going on.

Boring think tank geta wearing suits.

Sorry, this is not reflecting you Diana. I'm just hard on the foreignors here in Japan and those I see on TV. If you find material by David Specter or ??? I can never rember his name. A white haired gentleman. They have a good feel of what's Japan is like and most likely can speak about with some authority.

So, Let's get you a A+ or even a ground breaking topic.

100 yen shops, MacDonalds 59 yen burgers and deflation

The Japanese government's secretly milking dry the Post Savings

New bills to stimulate the economy. --- Japan is reissuing it's currency in hopes to create a spending spree on vending machines.

or my favorite

"The Evil Empire NTT" destroying mom and pop stores.

My favorite, the usage of Cellular phones is very seldom mentioned but I believe that this is the cause of a lot of troubles. If you see where the money would've gone vs to who it's going you'd see many patterns being created.

I'm just too lazy to do the research to build it into a book.

@80-100 pages
I thought that Professors would grade reports on far they flew down a flight of stairs? You know stand at the top and chuck them down. Heavier ones going the furthest :) and their by getting a better grade.
Cell phones are definitely an interesting topic.

Here's another great resource on Japanese economy:

Japan Inc. (they have a couple of weekly newsletters, very insightful)
You have such an interesting outlook on things...I love it
Too bad your sooo far away...I think we could be great friends.
Not that we can't now...

Japanese cell phones are sweet.
Ideas for a thesis

Well that is a good question. I remember my time in Japan during the boom years and how much the economy has changed since the mid to late eighties. Anything comparative with those times should keep your professor happy especially with regard to changing patterns..The change in labor markets(IE lifetime employment) or the influx of non-Japanese companies into the internal market of Japan would be interesting. I read earlier about Costco and other American retailers trying to break in and always wondered how their price competitive models of business would stack up against the quality competitive models of most Japanese companies. Just a couple of ideas. Good Luck!


thanks! But we already? err, that should be that we're on our way :)

yeah, they're sweet.

NTT, claims 25 million users. Too bad they don't mention that 4 of my last phones through them still have the old numbers listed as being used, eventhough I cancelled them years ago.


Nissan's French President
Mazada being close to what now? 33++% owned by Ford.
Japan's forced monopolies. (I had a French Friend who tried to buck the Harley Davidson model in Japan and he got threatened by the Yakuza for beiing too cheap).

There are lot's of ideas avaliable but alot will also depend on your teacher. You either side with his ideas or oppose them and force yourself to write a better paper.
Minna-san, you have great ideas!
I will definitely look closer at those that can be turned into (long) papers. For instance, I'm not sure I could write a thesis on Carlos Ghosn and his reform of Nissan, although the topic is certainly interesting. If I were to write on this, I would probably have to make the topic broader - i.e. to include other companies with gaijin bosses, or other transformations of firms.

Moyashi-san, I will choose my own topic, so this doesn't depend on any professor (as far as I know). But there will be a committee of professors who will read the thesis.

What do you think about the 'keiretsu' system? Worth discussing or not?

Thanks & yoroshiku!
No, not doctoral. I'm in college now (undergraduate), so it will be a thesis during my senior year. I heard theses are usually 80 to 100 pages long (more or less).
Top Bottom