1st Edition

The Origin of Japan’s Protectionist Agricultural Policy Agricultural Administration in Modern Japan

By Hironori Sasada Copyright 2024
    176 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explores the origins of Japan’s protectionist agricultural policies through an in-depth historical analysis of Japanese agricultural policies between the Meiji period and the end of WWII.

    It offers a constructivist account for the rise of protectionism, examining the policies of prewar agricultural bureaucrats who played critical roles in the policymaking process. It argues that protectionist agricultural policy in Japan was not originally generated by the "iron triangle" (a political alliance consisted of the Liberal Democratic Party, the Agricultural Ministry, and farmers’ organizations) but by a prewar agricultural bureaucrats’ policy idea called shōnō ron (thoughts on small-scale farming). Ultimately the book reveals how, contrary to suggestions of previous scholarship, the protective measures based on shōnō ron forged the necessary conditions for the emergence of "iron triangle" after the end of WWII, which in turn institutionalized Japan’s subsequent protectionist agricultural regime.

    Examining such topics as the origin of protectionist policy, the formation of actors’ preferences, and the broader effects of agricultural policy ideas, this book will be a valuable reading for scholars and students of Japanese politics, agricultural policy, and political economy.

    1 Protectionist Agricultural Policy in Japan

    2 Modernization and Agricultural Policy in Meiji

    3 The Rise of Agricultural Bureaucrats

    4 Food Control System

    5 The Economic Correction Plan

    6 The Past and Future of Japanese Agriculture


    Hironori Sasada is Professor of Japanese studies at Hokkaido University in Sapporo, Japan. His areas of specialty include political economy of Japan and East Asia, foreign policy, and party politics.