Introduction: Japanese Education in a Global Age
This introductory chapter clarifies the aims, framework, and outline of the book. The book aims to highlight the forefront of Japan’s education research through sociological and other related research approaches to historical developments and accomplishments provided mostly by members of the Japan Society of Educational Sociology (JSES). Japanese education exhibits unique dynamics among policy, demand, and supply. Sociologists and other social scientists in education in Japan have approached this issue mainly focusing on familial relationships, equity, and poverty. This chapter focuses on educational research phenomena which are possibly unique to Japan to many international readers. This includes global and regional policy and social trends such as neoliberalism, mobility, and the diffusion of ICT medias, while the reactions of researchers and society against these trends have often been different from other countries. It is hoped that this collection will contribute to the international debate on education and help sociologists and a wider range of social scientists outside of Japan gain a precise comprehension of ongoing changes in education in Japan as well as its historical and structural contexts.
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