SOAS University of London

School of Finance and Management

Management in Japan II

Module Code:
Taught in:
Term 2

This core module continues the examination of the Japanese managerial context with more emphasis on the economic difficulties in the 1990s and on the subsequent changes in the socio-economic and managerial environment and in corporate strategy.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

The overall objectives of the module are to:

  • Describe, explain and analyse the main features of the changing Japanese business environment after the ‘golden age’ of high speed growth
  • Examine some of the changes in the characteristics of firms after the high-growth era
  • Consider the implications of changes in the business world and firm environment for managerial strategies and choices

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:

  • Explain the key events in the chronology of the lower-growth period as a context for business evolution
  • Evaluate key socio-economic challenges faced by Japan since the ‘bubble burst’
  • Envision the scenarios for Japan’s future growth


This module consists of a 1-hour weekly lecture over 10 weeks of term plus a revision lecture in term 3 as preparation for the final examination. Students will be supplied with a syllabus with a breakdown week by week of required and additional reading. Reading materials are usually accessed electronically from the BLE and students should come to class prepared.

This module also has a weekly 1-hour tutorial where the questions posed by the tutor relevant to the lecture are explored and discussed by the students. Students also prepare and deliver a short presentation.

Total Work load:
Students on this module will have 2 taught hours each week. Additionally, adequate personal study time should be allocated for reading and class preparation.

Method of assessment

Assessment for this module is in three elements:

  1. One tutorial presentation at 10%
  2. One essay of 2,500 words at 30%
  3. One unseen 2-hour written examination at 60%

All elements except the presentation may be resubmitted.

Suggested reading

  • Porter, Michael E., Hirotaka Takeuchi and Mariko Sakakibara. 2000. Can Japan Compete? Basingstoke: Macmillan.
  • Schaede, Ulrike. 2008. Choose and Focus: Japanese Business Strategies for the 21st Century. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
  • Vogel, Steven K. 2006. Japan Remodeled: How Government and Industry are Reforming Japanese Capitalism. Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
  • Funabashi, Yoichi and Barak Kushner eds. 2015. Examining Japan’s Lost Decades. London: Routledge.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules