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Title: Impacts of 150 Years of Modernization Policies on the Management of Common Forests in Japan: A Statistical Analysis of Micro Census Data
Authors: Takahashi, Takuya
Matsushita, Koji
Yoshida, Yoshio
Senda, Tetsuji
Keywords: census data
common forests
Issue Date: 30-Jun-2019
Publisher: Ubiquity Press
Abstract: After World War II, Japan’s policy makers believed that common forests were underutilized because of their legal status and organization method under customary iriai-type ownership and that modern ownership in the form of group ownership, such as forest producers’ cooperatives, or as individual, separate ownership, would improve the situation. Thus, the Common Forests Modernization Act of 1966 was enacted, following successive modernization policies since the Meiji Restoration in 1868. We evaluated the impacts of the past modernization policies on the management of common forests by statistically comparing the performance of modernized and non-modernized 19,690 common forests based on the World Census of Agriculture and Forestry 2000. The performance measures for comparison included planting, weeding, thinning, and harvesting activities. We found less modernized, customary holdings are more active in tending activities such as weeding and thinning, while modernized holdings may have an advantage in harvesting and timber sales.
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