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Possibilities and Limitations of Social and Solidarity Economy in the Post-disaster Affected Areas of Tohoku, Japan

EasyChair Preprint no. 969

20 pagesDate: May 6, 2019


The Triple disasters of earthquake, tsunami, and the nuclear power accident hit Tohoku, Japan on 11th March, 2011. The “3.11” accelerated the long term structural changes of rural Japan: depopulation and decay of local community. After seven and half years since the disasters, there have been some noticeable progress on rebuilding physical infrastructure. However, rejuvenating rural communities now faces daunting challenges. This difficulty is still particularly acute in Fukushima, where urban consumers prefer not to purchase Fukushima’s agricultural products even if they are proven safe. One positive sign that has emerged in the post-disaster Tohoku is that there have been noticeable strengthening of relationship between rural producers and urban consumers. Before “3.11,” such relations were very weak, and did not provide a foundation for effective risk communication. Since “3.11,” this ineffectiveness has been devastating for both producers and consumers. However, some primary producers started to engage in innovative activities that not only sell produce directly to consumers using the Internet, for example, but also solicit mutual understanding through farm visits and joint activities. These new activities have resulted in an emergence of social and solidarity economy (SSE). My paper will critically examine both possibilities and limitations of SSE in post-disaster Japan. SSE may potentially be significant in making rural societies more resilient and sustainable than before. It is also hoped to promote food sovereignty. However, some critical issues remain in years to come.

Keyphrases: March 11, mutual understanding, Post-disaster areas, social and solidarity economy, Tohoku Food Communication (TFC)

BibTeX entry
BibTeX does not have the right entry for preprints. This is a hack for producing the correct reference:
  author = {Fumihiko Saito},
  title = {Possibilities and Limitations of Social and Solidarity Economy in the Post-disaster Affected Areas of Tohoku, Japan},
  howpublished = {EasyChair Preprint no. 969},

  year = {EasyChair, 2019}}
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