Finding numeric data for social science research on Japan can be challenging, especially when compared to other OECD countries. This guide identifies digital and print resources which provide information about numeric data collection involving Japan and, where possible, digital sources for that data. It will be of interest to faculty, students and other Harvard affiliates focusing on social science data research relating to Japan.
Please note that this guide is an introduction; it is not comprehensive, especially for print and Japanese-language resources. For more information, please contact librarians at the various Harvard collections housing either Japan-related materials or social science data. These include Kazuko Sakaguchi, Librarian of the Documentation Center on Contemporary Japan of the Fung Library (especially for post-WWII period); Kuniko Yamada McVey, Librarian for the Japanese Collection of Harvard-Yenching Library (especially for historical materials); and Diane Sredl of Numeric Data Services. You may also wish to consult the following list of Harvard libraries with Japan-related materials and contact their reference staff.
For more information about data resources and how to use them, please see the following research guides for US and international data. Broader coverage of Japan-related digital resources is provided in the Digital Resources for Japanese Studies guide. The latter also includes links to a number of portal sites for Japanese studies with more information on social science data resources.
Using this guide
Both English- and Japanese-language resources are included. Where print materials are referenced, a link to the HOLLIS record (Harvard's online catalog) is provided so that location and holdings may be checked easily. Please note that for series and journal publications, not all years may be available; it is important to check the holdings for each library.
General data resources with significant Japan-related content and those specifically focused on or developed in Japan are included. Where web sites have both an English and Japanese version and the content of the English version is substantial, links are given to both, usually on separate lines. In most cases, the Japanese-language site has more information. Where the site is only or primarily in Japanese, a note is added.
Many online resources are freely available via the web. Those which require a Harvard PIN are marked with a symbol. Those which require a special logon or password, or are restricted to a particular library, are marked with a symbol. Please contact library staff regarding access. Please note that some sites may require individual arrangements with the organization or be available only at Japanese universities. These are included for informational purposes.
This guide derives partially from workshops conducted at Harvard University in the fall of 2006 by Ms. Shinobu Murai of Hitotsubashi University Library 一橋大学附属図書館 . These were sponsored by the North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources 北米日本研究資料調整協議会 and the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies ライシャワー日本研究所 . We would like to express our gratitude to all three institutions.