Strategic Pragmatism: Japanese Lessons In The Use Of Economic Theory

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Strategic Pragmatism: Japanese Lessons In The Use Of Economic Theory

By Michèle Schmiegelow and Henrik Schmiegelow
Praeger, 1989
212 pp.
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This brilliant and provocative book, although written in a difficult academic style, is a tour de force that argues that Japanese-type economic policies can be duplicated in other capitalist states and that it is a mistake to believe that such policies can only evolve in the unique environment of Japanese culture and society. The Japanese case, say the authors, shows that there is no need for a large public sector in order to provide guidance to entrepreneurs. Talk about the Japanese Superstate is inaccurate; it would be more appropriate to speak of the Japanese Super Private Sector. The real lesson of the Japanese case is that "noncoercive, rational, market-oriented public guidance is possible and that dynamic private sectors are receptive to, and frequently in need of, such guidance in order to share the burden of risks."

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