Journal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology

, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp 47–66 | Cite as

Japan’s silver human resource centers and participant well-being

  • Robert S. Weiss
  • Scott A. Bass
  • Harley K. Heimovitz
  • Masato Oka


Japan’s Silver Human Resource Center (SHRC) program provides part-time, paid employment to retirement-aged men and women. We studied 393 new program participants and examined whether part-time work influenced their well-being or “ikigai.” The participants were divided into those who had worked in SHRC-provided jobs in the preceding year, and those who had not. Gender-stratified regression models were fitted to determine whether SHRC employment was associated with increased well-being. For men, actively working at a SHRC job was associated with greater well-being, compared to inactive members. And men with SHRC jobs and previous volunteering experience had the greatest increase in well-being. Women SHRC job holders did not experience increased well-being at the year’s end. The study concludes that there is justification for exploring the usefulness of a similar program for American retirees who desire post-retirement part-time work.


employment ikigai Japan retirement volunteer well-being 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert S. Weiss
    • 1
  • Scott A. Bass
    • 2
  • Harley K. Heimovitz
    • 3
    • 5
  • Masato Oka
    • 4
  1. 1.University of Massachusetts BostonBoston
  2. 2.University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)Baltimore
  3. 3.Econometrica, Inc.Bethesda
  4. 4.Yokohama City UniversityYokohamaJAPAN
  5. 5.Econometrica, Inc.Bethesda

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