Technology and Innovation in Japan: Policy and Management for the Twenty-First Century

By Martin Hemmert; Christian Oberländer | Go to book overview

1

THE JAPANESE SYSTEM OF TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION

Preparing for the twenty-first century

Martin Hemmert and Christian Oberländer

Fundamental change, gradual evolution, or stagnation?

Since the beginning of the 1980s, Japan has advanced to a leading position in numerous fields of high technology. This is reflected, for example, in Japan’s technology trade (Figure 1.1). From 1975 until 1984, exports of technology continually approached imports. After 1985, the expansion of exports temporarily slowed down, apparently caused by the appreciation of the Yen after the Plaza accord. In 1993, finally, exports exceeded imports for the first time. In particular, Japan has reduced the technology trade gap with the US and Europe significantly, raising the ratio of exports to imports from 0.13 and

Figure 1.1 Japan’s technology exports and imports, 1975-96 (100 million Yen)

Source: Somucho Tokeikyoku (1997 and various years).

-3-

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