RIETI Report June 2002

RIETI's Research Style: System Analysis <RIETI Featured Fellow> TSURU Kotaro

This month's featured article

RIETI's Research Style: System Analysis <RIETI Featured Fellow> TSURU Kotaro

TSURU KotaroSenior Fellow, RIETI

Greetings from RIETI

How does each player - be it a politician, a member of a bureaucratic organizations, a company or an individual - act in a society? As we deal with various problems, it is becoming increasingly important to conduct "system analysis from a political economic standpoint." Today, we find ourselves awash in a flood of information. To apprehend the true course of events among numerous passing phenomena, we need to have a fixed point of observation and see the true nature of events.

Kotaro Tsuru, senior fellow at Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry, describes his attitude in research like this: "As a child, whenever I was in a new town, I was very curious and wanted to know what's where and how the whole town looks. What I couldn't see while roaming about on the streets suddenly became visible and clear when I looked down the town from the top of a hill. That feeling is the basic idea of understanding something." Abstraction is necessary in the academic world but he said it is one of RIETI's missions to "explain and help people understand things that are difficult to see and understand," he says.

RIETI will continue to provide substantive discussions about various current topics.

In his "Economic Review" column on the Web, Tsuru looks at various economic problems, introduces useful economics research, and discusses their implications to the actual economy and policies.
Click here


TSURU Kotaro
Mr. Tsuru has been senior fellow at RIETI since 2001. He joined Economic Planning Agency (EPA) as a government economist in 1984 after receiving Mathematics from the University of Tokyo. He received a Master's degree in Economics from the St. Anthony's College of the Oxford University. >From 1995 to2000, he served as staff economist at the OECD's Economics Department in Paris. He was Research Economist at Institute of Monetary& Economic Studies of Bank of Japan. His research areas include corporate governance, financial system (e.g. banking), employment system, and political economics.

For his column, click here

For his discussion paper (PDF) on "Bank relationships and firm performance: Evidence from selected Japanese firms in the electrical machinery industry", click here

For his discussion paper (PDF) on "Careers and incentives of Japanese 'fast-track' bureaucrats: A career-path dependent model perspective", click here

For his discussion paper on "The choice of lending patterns by Japanese banks during the 1980s and 1990s: The causes and consequences of a real estate lending boom", see: fedps2001

For his discussion paper on "Should banks choose collateral or non-collateral lending?: The impact of project's risk, bank's monitoring efficiency and land price inflation", see: fedps2001

For his working paper on "Finance and growth: Some theoretical consideration and a review of the empirical literature", see: eco-wkp(2000)1

"Japanese corporate governance in transition", Seoul Journal of Economics, 2000, Vol.13, No.3.

Although he has diverse interests in many areas, he says all the areas of economics are linked and cannot be separated. In analyzing issues of systems, political economic viewpoints add flavor to the policy analysis. When asked about his views on the Koizumi Structural Reforms, he said, "to expect and see only negative aspects. It is not realistic to reform all the areas overnight under the current Japanese system. It is not fair to blame him for not achieving everything under the current system, which is not like a presidential system. If he succeeds in privatizing postal services, we should give him a credit."

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