First Advisor

Martha Works

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.) in Geography




Japan -- Population, Aging -- Japan, Population aging -- Government policy -- Japan




Japan is facing a demographic crisis. The population is aging and shrinking at a considerable pace despite the government's efforts to curtail the problem. This rapid change in the demographic structure of Japan is bound to have stark implications on the society and economy of Japan. The objective of this paper is to understand the issues that allowed this impeding crisis to come about. A thorough examination of the current literature on Japan's fertility and population issues revealed that a number of various factors are causing the impending crisis. Some of the factors determined to be affecting the population dilemma include the prevailing social conditions, attitudes, and practices ofthe Japanese people, in addition to economic realities that constrain many people's choices. The government of Japan has, over the past fifteen years, enacted a number of policies to address the population crisis. However, these appear to have done little to mitigate the decline in fertility. It is apparent that greater attention must be given to the underlying issues that are causing the crisis. If the situation is to improve, a change in the current mindset of how to amend the population problem must occur.


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A research paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Geography

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