Japanese preschools have been the subject of extensive ethnographic investigation over the last 40 years or more. However, the market for preschools in Japan has received almost no such attention. This market is rapidly changing, for the recent sharp decrease in the number of children in the country has resulted in a growing struggle on the part of kindergartens to attract children, largely by catering to the needs of mothers, for their survival. This chapter, by considering children as a common-pool resource (CPR) for which kindergartens quietly vie with one another, examines the situation in the capital city of Akita Prefecture, and shows how mothers – and also households – have been able to benefit in terms of convenience due to competition among kindergartens for their children.
Wood, D.C. (2009), "Children as a common-pool resource: change and the shrinking kindergarten market in a Japanese city", Wood, D.C. (Ed.) Economic Development, Integration, and Morality in Asia and the Americas (Research in Economic Anthropology, Vol. 29), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 341-379. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0190-1281(2009)0000029015Download as .RIS
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