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Information Governance in Japan: Towards a New Comparative Paradigm (SVNJ eBook series)
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The history of human civilization has been about managing information, from hunting and gathering through contemporary times. In modern societies, information flows are central to how individuals and societies interact with governments, economies, and other countries. Despite this centrality of information, information governance—how information flows are managed—has not been a central concern of scholarship. We argue that it should be, especially now that digitization has dramatically altered the amount of information generated, how it can be transmitted, and how it can be used.

This book examines various aspects of information governance in Japan, utilizing comparative and historical perspectives. The aim is threefold: 1) to explore Japan’s society, politics, and economy through a critical but hitherto underexamined vantage that we believe cuts to the core of what modern societies are built with—information; 2) articulate a set of components which can be used to analyze other countries from the vantage of information governance; and 3) provide frameworks of reference to analyze each component.

This book is the product of a multidisciplinary, multinational collaboration between scholars based in the US and Japan. Each are experts in their own fields (economics, political science, information science, law, library science), and were brought together in two workshops to develop, explore, and analyze the conception and various of facets of information governance. This book is frontier research by proposing and taking this conception of information governance as a framework of analysis.

The introduction sets up the analysis by providing background and a framework for understanding the conception of information governance. Part I focuses on the management of government-held information. Part II examines information central to economic activity. Part III explores information flows crucial to politics and social life.

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