This paper looks into the question of the cooperative form between the public and private sectors, which has become notable recently in contemporary capitalist societies as a new device of state intervention. It examines the development of partnerships in postwar Japan, by tracing how the structure and characteristics of partnerships have evolved in accordance with the changing mode of state intervention over the past four decades, and assesses the spatial outcomes of partnership activities. Since the early 1970s, partnerships have manifested attributes identified as the signs of a changing regime and have encouraged a deeper division of the country’s spatial structure. The argument is thus made that partnerships have served to carry out industrial restructuring, whereby the spatial structure of the country has been further incorporated into the global economy. The paper concludes with the theoretical implication that the current partnership was designed as an apparatus to incorporate non‐market segments into commodity relations, thereby providing a new path of capital accumulation.