Sustainability Science

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 493–503 | Cite as

Participatory approach in vision setting: emerging initiatives in local municipalities in Japan

  • Keishiro Hara
  • Terukazu Kumazawa
  • Michinori Kimura
  • Kazutoshi Tsuda
Technical Report


In this paper, we present the emerging practices in Japanese local municipalities, in which participatory methods are applied to envision sustainable future and relevant target settings. We selected three local cases: Higashiomi city, Kizugawa city and Nagakute city as emerging initiatives. A comparative analysis was carried out to identify commonalities and differences, and to derive lessons for appropriate governance and systems for participatory deliberation in future visioning. We argue that the deliberation processes served as a platform for effective communication, and that installing a mechanism that allows reflexive deliberation processes is the key to make participatory methods fully functional.


Participatory methods Vision setting Deliberation Communication platform Local government 



The authors are grateful to Dr. Jaegyu Kim of Lake Biwa Environmental Research Institute, Shiga prefecture, Prof. Takayoshi Kusago of Kansai University, and officials at Kizugawa city for providing useful information and comments. This study is partially supported by Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C) (Research Project Number: 25340142), Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Keishiro Hara
    • 1
  • Terukazu Kumazawa
    • 2
  • Michinori Kimura
    • 3
  • Kazutoshi Tsuda
    • 4
  1. 1.Center for Environmental Innovation Design for SustainabilityOsaka UniversitySuitaJapan
  2. 2.Research Institute for Humanity and NatureKyotoJapan
  3. 3.Lake Biwa Environmental Research InstituteOtsuJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of EngineeringOsaka UniversitySuitaJapan

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