Policy Research Domains (Adjacent Basic Research Areas) A. Institutions Related to Financial and Labor Markets, and New Corporate Law and Governance

Empirical Analysis of Japan's Labor Market: Policy Responses to Fertility Decline and Population Aging

Project Leader/Sub-Leader


KAWAGUCHI Daiji Faculty Fellow



2008 - 2010

This project covers the following six themes:

  • (1) Figuring out the basic facts of Japan's labor markets;
  • (2) Analysis of factors affecting the proliferation of non-regular employment;
  • (3) Impact of non-regular employment on career development of young people and its welfare implications;
  • (4) Theoretical and empirical analysis of the impact of long-term employment systems on corporate productivity;
  • (5) Theoretical and empirical analysis of the impact of increased mobility in labor markets on corporate productivity; and
  • (6) Empirical analysis of the use of non-regular employees based on corporate personnel data.

First, the basic facts of Japan's labor markets in recent years will be figured out using large-scale government statistics. Next, the project will focus on the proliferation of non-regular modes of employment, and will analyze the cause of its increase as well as the impact of this trend on young people's career development and related welfare implications. The project will evaluate how the shortening of the average years of employment caused by non-regular employment affects corporate productivity. Furthermore, the project will verify theoretically and empirically how greater labor mobility reduces employment mismatching and improves productivity. Finally, corporate personnel data will be used in analyzing the use of non-regular employees and their promotion to regular employee status.


The issues of wage and income disparities have attracted keen interest in recent years. However, very little research has been conducted using large-scale government statistics on wage and income disparities that are representative of all of Japan. The purpose of this project is to survey the changes in wage distribution between 1982 and 2002 using microdata from the "Employment Status Survey." Based on these findings, time-series changes in the speed of income mobility in lifecycle are observed to understand how the lifetime income distribution has been changing. In addition, microdata from the "Basic Survey of Japanese Business Structure and Activities" will be used to analyze the structure of labor demand with special emphasis on the difference between regular and non-regular labor.

April 25, 2007 - March 31, 2011

Major Research Results


RIETI Discussion Papers


RIETI Discussion Papers


RIETI Discussion Papers

RIETI Policy Symposium

  • Apr. 02, 2009
    "Working Hours Reform in Japan"


RIETI Discussion Papers


RIETI International Seminar