Same Bed, Different Dreams: America and Japan—Societies in Transition

Alan D. Romberg and Tadashi Yamamoto, eds.

The bitter trade disputes that soured Japan-US ties in the 1980s were a symptom of changing circumstances underlying the relationship. Political rhetoric and media hype caused attention to focus narrowly on trade friction and economic competition. The negative rhetoric exemplified the general lack of understanding of the domestic forces and political processes that shape policy making in the targeted country. It also obscured the growing community of interests binding the two democracies together on economic, political, and security levels.

This book addresses these problems by analyzing the sweeping political and economic changes that are forcing Japan and the United States to redefine their own identity, values, and national goals. It is hoped that a better understanding of the changes occurring on the opposite side of the Pacific Ocean will help to improve communication between the two countries and lead to a stronger bilateral relationship.

All chapters but the first were originally presented at the Conference on Social Change in Japan and the United States: Implications for the Bilateral Relationship, in Oiso Japan, in 1988, co-sponsored by the Japan Center for International Exchange. A list of participants at the conference is contained in the appendix.


1. The United States and Japan: Grappling with the Future
Alan D. Romberg, C. V. Starr Fellow for Asia, Council on Foreign Relations
2. Recent Changes in American Social Attitudes
Howard Schuman, Professor of Sociology, the University of Michigan
3. Recent Changes in Japanese Attitudes
Sumiko Iwao, Professor of Social Psychology, Institute of Communications Research, Keio University
4. US Industrial Culture and the Japanese Competitive Challenge
D. Eleanor Westney, Associate Professor of Management, Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
5. Japanese Corporate Culture: Lessons from Foreign Direct Investment
Haruo Shimada, Professor of Economics, Keio University
6. Institutional Changes in the US Policy Process: Bureaucrats and Politicians
Bert A. Rockman, Professor of Political Science and Research Professor, University Center for International Studies, University of Pittsburgh
7. Political Constraints in Japanese Policymaking
Taizo Yakushiji, Professor of Technology and International Relations, Graduate Institute of Political Science, Saitama University
Copyright © 1990 Council on Foreign Relations. All Rights Reserved.
ISBN 0-87609-082-X; 149 pages; paper