The Council on East Asian Studies presents
Seiki Tanaka, Assistant Professor of International Relations, University of Groningen:
“Consensus Formation in an Individualistic Country: When do Japanese Care about Others?”
A myriad of survey polls and academic literature suggest that Japanese are rather individualistic and do not care about others. Across different indicators, Japanese seem to be the least likely to engage in pro-social behavior among advanced democracies. The egoistic attitudes, in aggregate, should make it difficult for the society to have a consensus over redistributive policies ranging from a tax increase to corona-related benefits. The talk begins with the stylized understanding of the Japanese society and concludes by discussing conditions under which Japanese care about others and how Japan can form a consensus on redistribution.
Seiki Tanaka is Assistant Professor of International Relations in the Department of International Relations and International Organization at the University of Groningen. He studies the microfoundations of social diversity and conflicts and how different groups of people can co-exist within a society in an era of globalization and technological advancement. He received his doctoral degree in Political Science from the University of Tokyo.