From left to right: Images of Tokyo, 2006 and Kyoto, 2010, Japan (photos by Se-Hoon Park)


From left to right: Construction site of Incheon Free Economic Zone, Korea, 2009; Convention Center at Incheon Free Economic Zone, Korea, 2010; Guro Digital Industrial Complex in Seoul, Korea, 2013 (photos by Bae-Gyoon Park)

This virtual issue is composed of 10 articles on urban and regional development in Japan and Korea, published in IJURR over the past three decades. The processes of urbanization in Japan and Korea are distinctive in the sense that they have been deeply connected to the developmentalist efforts for national development. In particular, urban growth in Japan and Korea during the period from the 1960s to the 1980s was heavily influenced by the processes of state-led developmentalist industrialization. The developmental states in Japan and Korea prioritized urban infrastructure to support mass production and economic growth. The processes of developmental urbanization, however, began to be weakened from the end of the 1980s in Japan, and from the end of the 1990s in Korea, mainly in relation to neoliberal globalization. Since then, neoliberal and more market-friendly processes of urban development have become very influential in Japan and Korea. Global connections have gained more prominence, for instance, instead of national urban networks and territorial integrity. The Japanese and Korean states are devolving some tax and expenditure responsibilities from central to local governments and decentralizing more decision making to localities. Growth-oriented urban politics have become stronger in many Japanese and Korean cities. These neoliberal changes, however, cannot be explained in terms of the shift from developmental urbanism to neoliberal urbanism because the institutional and material legacies of developmental urbanism are still influential in Japanese and Korean urban and regional development. The articles collected in this virtual issue provide essential insights into the processes of developmental and post-developmental urban development in Japan and Korea.

Bae-Gyoon Park
IJURR Editorial Board
July 2014

The Japanese Technopolis Programme: High-tech Development Strategy or Industrial Policy in Disguise?
Amy K. Glasmeier (1988)

Osaka’s Tokyo Problem
Richard Child Hill and Kuniko Fujita (1995)

Symbolic Use of Globalization in Urban Politics in Tokyo
Takashi Machimura (1998)

Precariousness in Everyday Life: Homelessness in Japan
Patricia Kennett and Masami Iwata (2003)

Globalization, the Developmental State and the Politics of Urban Growth in Korea: A Multilevel Analysis
Yooil Bae and Jefferey M. Sellers (2007)

Uneven Development, Inter-scalar Tensions, and the Politics of Decentralization in South Korea
Bae-Gyoon Park (2008)

Uneven Processes of Institutional Change: Path Dependence, Scale and the Contested Regulation of Urban Development in Japan
Andre Sorensen (2011)

Neoliberalization of the Developmental State: Tokyo’s Bottom-up Politics and State Rescaling in Japan
Takashi Tsukamoto (2012)

Fracturing Hegemony: Regionalism and State Rescaling in South Korea, 1961–71
Dong-Wan Gimm (2013)

Relational Governance and the Formation of a New Economic Space: The Case of Teheran Valley, Seoul, Korea
Namji Jung (2013)