skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 50944 Find in a Library
Title: CHANGING LABOR MARKETS AND CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR IN JAPAN
Journal: JOURNAL OF ASIAN STUDIES  Volume:36  Issue:3  Dated:(MAY 1977)  Pages:477-489
Author(s): R EVANS JR
Corporate Author: Assoc for Asian Studies
United States of America
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: Assoc for Asian Studies
Chicago, IL 60637
National Science Foundation
Arlington, VA 22230
Social Science Research Council
New York, NY 10016
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EXPANDING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES AND DECLINING CRIME RATES IN POSTWAR JAPAN IS EXPLORED.
Abstract: DURING JAPAN'S POSTWAR RECOVERY, THE CRIME LEVEL ROSE UNTIL 1948 FOR CRIME IN GENERAL AND UNTIL 1951 FOR PROPERTY CRIME. FROM 1955 TO 1975 OPPORTUNITIES IN JAPANESE LABOR MARKETS GREW VERY RAPIDLY AND THE CRIME LEVEL DECLINED STEADILY. REGRESSION ANALYSIS STRONGLY SUPPORTS THE CONCLUSION THAT THERE HAS BEEN A CLOSE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ECONOMIC GROWTH AND DECLINING CRIME IN JAPAN SINCE WORLD WAR II. DEPENDENT VARIABLES ARE ALTERNATIVE MEASURES OF CRIME (THE CRIME RATE, THE ADULT ARREST RATE, AND THE JUVENILE ARREST RATE); AND THE INDEPENDENT VARIABLES ARE THOSE ASSOCIATED WITH CRIME CONTROL AND INCREASED ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES (CONTROL MEASURED BY CLEARANCE AND CONVICTION RATES, ECONOMIC OPPORUNTITIES MEASURES BY REAL WAGES, JOB OPENINGS, MODERN INDUSTRY EMPLOYMENT, INCOME INEQUALITY, AND INCREASES IN LEVELS OF EDUCATION). THERE IS EVIDENCE TO SUGGEST THAT LABOR MARKET FACTORS HAVE INFLUENCED THE LEVEL OF CRIME BY LOWERING THE RATE OF RECIDIVISM. ALTERNATIVE EXPLANATIONS OF JAPAN'S DECLINING CRIME RATE--THE GENERAL DISORGANIZATION OF THE IMMEDIATE POSTWAR YEARS, CHANGES IN POLICE ORGANIZATION, INCREASED LEVELS OF EDUCATION--ARE NOT AS COMPELLING AS THE LABOR MARKET RATIONALE. COMPARISON OF PREWAR AND POSTWAR ECONOMIC AND CRIME STATISTICS SHOWS THAT ONLY IN THE POSTWAR YEARS, WHEN SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENTS WERE TAKING PLACE AND AFTER THE CULTURAL SHOCK OF MODERNIZATION HAD PASSED, DID ECONOMIC FACTORS BEGIN TO INFLUENCE THE INCIDENCE OF CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR IN JAPAN FAVORABLY. THE JAPANESE EXPERIENCE, TOGETHER WITH THE BRITISH AND AMERICAN EXPERIENCES IN THE 19TH CENTURY, SUGGEST THAT PERIODS OF INTENSE EXPANSION AND JOB CREATION PRECEDE A PHASE OF MATURE ECONOMIC ACTIVITY IN A CAPITALIST COUNTRY. DURING SUCH MATURE PEIODS, REAL GROWTH IS RELATIVELY SLOW, SOCIAL MOBILITY IS BLOCKED, EXISTING INCOME DISTRIBUTIONS ARE MAINTAINED, AND CRIME RATES BEGIN TO MOVE UPWARD. JAPAN APPEARS TO BE AT OR NEAR THE END OF ITS PHASE OF RAPID GROWTH. THE CAPITALIST ECONOMIES OF THE WEST HAVE PASSED INTO THE MATURE PHASE, AND ARE EXPERIENCING THE ASSOCIATED RISING LEVELS OF CRIME. THE IMPLICATION IS THAT JAPAN, TOO, MAY FIND ITS CRIME RATES RISING IN THE YEARS AHEAD. SUPPORTING DATA ARE INCLUDED. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED--LKM)
Index Term(s): Crime Rate; Economic analysis; Economic crime models; Japan
Note: EARLIER VERSION PRESENTED AT JAPAN ECONOMIC SEMINAR
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50944

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.