China’s “Harmonious Society” Challenges Corporate Japan: Towards a Dual Vision of Profitability and Social Responsibility

China’s “Harmonious Society” Challenges Corporate Japan: Towards a Dual Vision of Profitability and Social Responsibility

Keikoh Ryu (Waseda University, Japan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0306-6.ch010

Abstract

Anti-Japanese sentiment in China since the Second World War has been exacerbated by recent territorial disputes involving the Senkaku Islands and the natural resources of the East China Sea. The widespread dissemination of anti-Japanese propaganda by the Chinese media has further contributed to this negative image of Japanese corporations. This pervasive climate of anti-Japanese sentiment has forced Japanese companies seeking to expand their businesses abroad to grapple with the unique challenges of navigating the highly politicized environment of Chinese harmonious society. Still, the success of any foreign companies in China fundamentally depends on whether China’s market economy continues to develop in the face of harsh political conditions and growing social unrest. To date, only a handful of studies have addressed the effects of Chinese harmonious society on the performance of Japanese corporations operating in China. This study is an attempt to fill that gap.
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China's Emphasis On Corporate Responsibility

Based on the discussion above, this section provides a critical assessment of prior research and how it helps to illuminate the unique challenges facing Japanese corporations in China. Recent developments suggest the emergence of the notion of a “harmonious society” in China has led to greater emphasis on social engagement, forcing Japanese corporations to live up to various corporate responsibilities imposed by the Chinese government.

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