The Importance of Relationships in Japanese Society: From a Business History Perspective

07/02/2018, 16:00 - 18:00


The second seminar in the Japanese Seminar Series 2017-18, with guest speaker Dr Ryosuke Takeuchi (Yokohama National University & Visiting Academic at Cardiff Business School).

In Japanese society, many believe that a “relationship” is very important. For example, Japanese culture is sometimes evaluated as “collectivism” (whether correct or not), and “Wa wo motte totoshi to nasu (Cherish the harmony among people)” points out the importance of cooperation among people. And also, especially after Great East Japan earthquake in 2011, the word of “Kizuna (bonds or ties with others)” has been used quite often.

The idea of looking at relationships as being important is reflected in the Japanese business arena. For instance, “cooperative labor-management relations” is a characteristic of Japanese management and has contributed to create international competitiveness. When we look back to the past, the Japanese textile industry (Kanegahuchi Spinning Co. [Kanebo] as the representative case) before WWII was a good example which built cooperative labor-management relations and successfully achieved international competitiveness.

In this seminar, Dr Royosuke Takeuchi will discuss the importance of relationships in Japanese business activities by focusing on the past business activities and their results.

Dr Ryosuke Takeuchi is an associate professor at the Faculty of International Social Sciences, Yokohama National University in Japan. He is currently a visiting academic at Cardiff Business School. He graduated from Kobe University in 2003 where he also received his PhD in business administration in 2010. His research focuses on the history of international business, mainly the history of Japanese activities of foreign multinational enterprises (MNEs) after World War II. Now he is trying to explore the history and the evolution process of Japanese subsidiaries of MNEs in the pharmaceutical or food and beverage industries.

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Japanese Seminar Series