Diversity vs. Uniformity: An Honest Conversation

November 16, 2022|Job Market

In highly-diverse societies such as the United States or Europe, talk of “diversity” in the labor force has been around for a long time. In Japan, the issue is rather different, to put it mildly.

Diversity is certainly not the strongest aspect of Japan’s labor market. There is a long history of local tradition, work culture and institutions that have inhibited the shift from a uniform working class to one that is more diverse.

You will notice a certain dispersion in the male – female, or foreigner – Japanese, employee ratio for various sectors of the economy. What you see in the construction industry will obviously contrast with the apparel sector; while the taxi business will exhibit a stark contrast compared to the hospitality sector.

If we put aside the recent upheavals caused by Covid-19, then we noticed that over the past decade various sectors of Japan’s economy have clearly exhibited a tendency towards more diversity. Today, there are many more young leaders, female employees, foreign nationals, as well as gender identity individuals working than just a few years ago.

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