Continuities and Changes in Family Policy and Familialism in Japan
This study aims to elucidate the specific characteristics of the family policy that came into existence at that time, to analyze its continuities and changes over the past decade, and to examine how these factors relate to the persistence or decline of familialism in the Japanese welfare regime.
This study first traces the development of policy responses to declining fertility rates since the early 1990s, and attempts to explain how family policy with specifically Japanese characteristics was formed in the mid-2000s.
Second, it analyzes the course taken by family policy development over the past decade, paying particular attention to the effects of the administration changes in 2009 and in 2012. Tension and contradictions inherent in the family policy of the Abe administration are analyzed, as well as those between pronatalism and the goal to increase female labor force participation; between quantity and quality of childcare services; and between pursuit of work-family life balance and neoliberal labor policy.
Finally, this study examines how the development of family policy has affected, and been affected by, familialism in the Japanese welfare regime.