Times of Oman
Nov 27, 2015 LAST UPDATED AT 07:51 PM GMT
‘Social values drive Japan’s industries’
December 19, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Times News Service

The College of Economics & Political Science at Sultan Qaboos University (SQU), in cooperation with the Japanese Embassy, organised a special lecture on 'Japanese corporate culture and Japanese people's behaviour in crisis'.

The lecture, delivered by Mariko Mikami, a freelance journalist and an Associate Professor at the University of Shinshu, was held in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between Oman and Japan.

Mikami explained how Japan developed in industry and innovation without having any significant natural resources.

"The only reliable source for development and profit generation in our country is the human resources potential. Industrial organisations in Japan are regarded as having social function and not just for equity shareholders' benefit. The companies always look at long- term perspectives and to promote family-like culture among the employees and the management. The relationships within the organisation are based on trust," Mariko Mikami said.

In corporate management, personnel expenditure is not considered as a cost, but rather an investment to assets. The boundary between blue and white collar is blurred and Japanese people are termed as 'creative class'.  Knowledge from the bottom up is valued as much as scientific approach.

It is not rare in Japan that vocational high school graduates get doctoral degree through their company's development activity.

Mikami said that as a result of this unique industrial culture, Japan, a country smaller than California,  was able to build up an industrial base more than half as large as that of the US.

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