Globalization and the Politics of Institutional Reform in Japan
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Globalization and the Politics of Institutional Reform in Japan

Motoshi Suzuki

Globalization and the Politics of Institutional Reform in Japan illuminates Japan’s contemporary and historical struggle to adjust policy and the institutional architecture of government to an evolving global order. This focused and scholarly study identifies that key to this difficulty is a structural tendency towards central political command, which reduces the country’s capacity to follow a more subtle allocation of authority that ensures political leadership remains robust and non-dictatorial. The author argues that it is essential for a globalizing state to incorporate opposition parties and transgovernmental networks into policy-making processes. Providing an in-depth analysis of the theories of institutional change, this book introduces readers to a wealth of perspectives and counterarguments concerning analysis of political decision-making and policy adjustment on both the national and international scale.
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Chapter 5: Authority reallocation under the neoliberal global order – an overview

Motoshi Suzuki

Extract

A neoliberal global order has emerged since the 1980s, gradually replacing the post–World War II order of embedded liberalism. Under the new order, states are urged for cross-sectoral, sweeping liberalization, as opposed to sectorally limited, incremental liberalization under the preceding order. The scope of openness has expanded from conventional commodity trade to trade in services and agriculture. Enhanced regulatory rules on corporate governance and labor relations are pushed for the promotion of international investment. Last and not least, global standards for commercial banks’ minimum capital requirements are necessitated for financial prudence and stability. On the one hand, the implementation of these market-consistent rules and standards stimulates global competition, but on the other it generates a major distributive problem between domestic economic sectors (battle of the sexes game; see Chapter 1). On the one hand, the implementation of these market-consistent rules and standards stimulates global competition, but on the other it generates a major distributive problem between domestic economic sectors (battle of the sexes game; see Chapter 1). The distributive effect is substantial, particularly for states with non-liberal origins whose national rules and standards are qualitatively different from those of liberal states. The solution to the distributive problem requires the coordination of the policy actions of multiple ministries and agencies in charge of different policy domains and economic sectors.

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