Edward J. Lincoln
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In the late 1980s, Japan's strong economic performance put it on the verge of becoming a major player in regional and global affairs. But nearly a decade of economic stagnation, a mountain of bad debts, and a continuing stream of scandals have tarnished Japan's distinctive economic model. Nevertheless, Japan has been slow to embrace economic reform. Edward Lincoln analyzes why deregulation and other aspects of systemic economic reform have proceeded so sluggishly.
Exploring the causes of this weak response and its implications, Lincoln concludes that reform is likely to remain far less vigorous than necessary for a restoration of robust economic growth. If Japan continues to underperform economically over the next decade, its leadership in economic and security issues will erode, it will continue to be a laggard on trade liberalization, and it will react to regional and global issues in a more nationalistic manner.
Edward J. Lincoln is a senior fellow in Foreign Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution. His previous Brookings books include Troubled Times: U.S.-Japan Trade Relations in the 1990s (1999), Japan's New Global Role (1995), and Japan's Unequal Trade (1990). In the mid-1990s, Lincoln served as special economic advisor to Walter Mondale, former U.S. ambassador to Japan.
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