Progress Report on the Asian Historical Statistics Project

Compiled by the Researchers

1) Organization of the Research

The Asian Historical Statistics Project takes as its subject all of Asia and delves into numerous areas of research interest. Therefore, as shown in Chart 1, we have organized our research groups to create a division of labor designed to expedite the work. The names of the group leaders are indicated in parentheses. (Where no group leader name is indicated, we are considering the group's situation and will select a leader later.)

The Executive Committee is composed of five project managers, all of them professors at the Institute of Economic Research: Konosuke Odaka, who is also the project leader, Kiyohiko Kiyokawa, Juro Teranishi, Yoshiaki Nishimura, and Osamu Saito. They will assume responsibility for supervising the research and handling related matters. The Executive Committee will meet on the fourth Wednesday of each month to discuss the organization and progress of the research.

Following the Executive Committee meeting, group leaders will convene on the first Wednesday of each month (forming an "Expanded Executive Committee") meeting to discuss the progress of the research.

The Business Office for the Statistics Project employs full-time assistants, research assistants, and specialist researchers, and provides administrative and support functions such as accounting, gathering of statistical materials, statistical data entry, and computer and printing services. The Statistics Project clearly needs its own business office in order to eliminate delays and other problems which would result if we relied totally on the offices of the Institute for Economic Research. However, the Project will continue to utilize the resources and staff of the Institute and of the central university to conduct basic business operations.

Our Advisory Committee, as of January 1996, is composed of Mataji Umemura (Professor, Soka University and Professor Emeritus at Hitotsubashi), Shigeru Ishikawa (Professor, Josai University; Professor Emeritus at Hitotsubashi and at Aoyama Gakuin University), Nobuhiko Kosuge (National Income Department, Institute of Economic Research, Economic Planning Agency), and Masahiro Kuroda (Professor, Keio University). The Advisory Committee was formed for the purposes of issuing occasional reports on the progress of the Project, providing expert and objective criticism, and advising on future issues.

2) Research Facilities and Equipment

We have set up Project research and business offices separate from the regular Institute offices. In addition, we are installing a workstation (which should have a server capacity) and a number of personal computers in order to input statistics and bibliographies and to maintain electronic communications with domestic and overseas contacts. We also provide portable computers in order to enhance our ability to gather and process data in the field.

3) Progress of the Research

Chart 2 shows the basic organization of the research and the research groups, and the progress realized so far in the different research areas. The top horizontal row shows the main topics of research and the left vertical column breaks down research areas into specific categories. Within the chart, a circle (0) indicates that work in an area is nearly completed. A triangle () indicates that the work has begun. No mark indicates that work in a particular area has not yet begun. As of January 1996, work is most advanced on post-World War II Russia and on Taiwan and some other East Asian countries. Statistical data input is more advanced for Turkey and other Middle Eastern countries than for other regions.

The research categories listed in the left column are arranged according to a logical and orderly time schedule, but in reality there are limits to how closely we can meet this schedule. One of the main reasons is that finding and processing statistical data can be expected to continue to the very end of the Project.

As the scope and objectives of the Project are quite ambitious, it is not realistic to expect the research groups to accomplish their tasks without outside assistance Accordingly, we expect that research participants will call upon such assistance as the occasion demands. (For example, groups might, as necessary, rely upon professional library assistance to compile economic statistics or call upon the specialized knowledge of overseas experts.)

Overseas universities and institutes from which Project researchers come include Russia Far East Academy, the Russian Central Statistical Committee, National Taiwan University, National Chung-Hsing University(in Taiwan), Academia Sinica(in Taiwan), Shanghai Finance and Economics University, Australian National University, University of New England (in Australia), Malaya University, Singapore University, Institute of Economic Growth Research Institute (Delhi), the Madras Statistical Research Institute, Istanbul University, the University of Groningen (in the Netherlands), and the University of London.

4) Research Gatherings

(4-1) In order to further discussion and debate on the goals, framework, and methodology of the Project, the first Research Workshop was held on December 17, 1995 at Hitotsubashi University's Sano Building. The presentations and subsequent discussions gave the researchers the opportunity to get to know their colleagues better and stimulated thinking on improving methodology. In addition, the results of recent work on economic statistics for Southeast Asia were shared among the participants (Chart 3 shows the program of the Research Workshop).

Much of the discussion on methodology centered on determining standardized concepts and base years to guide research (for this purpose, we are compiling a manual on database construction). We also plan to devise standards for classifying commodities and industries. Discussion papers on these topics will be released shortly.

(4-2) The Statistics Project takes Asia as its object of study, and this vast region should, of course, be placed in its proper context. One topic which currently commands a great deal of attention is the relationship between states and markets. Moreover, the compilation, evaluation, and interpretation of economic statistics is important for continued research on state-market relations. Thus we convened the "Market and Government: Foes or Friends? International Conference on the World Economy in Transition" from February 8 to February 10 in Tokyo. The conference included, in addition to professors from Hitotsubashi and other Japanese universities, distinguished scholars from around the world. Their participation helped the conference to further the dissemination of knowledge on economic development in modern and modernizing societies (Chart 4 outlines the conference program).

(4-3) In order to maintain a suitable link with the International Conference while pursuing the Statistics Project agenda, an International Workshop will be convened on March 4 and 5 (Monday and Tuesday) at the Sano Building on the Hitotsubashi University campus. Among the main concerns of this gathering are technical problems and research strategy. A number of guest specialists have been invited from overseas. Their participation should stimulate discussion on compiling long-term economic statistics, and we welcome their insights on interpreting historical economic statistics (see Chart 5 for the International Workshop program).

5) Disseminating the Results of the Research

The results of the research will be initially made available in the form of Discussion Papers or academic reports; they will later be collected and published in book form as a Reprint Series. Contents of Discussion Papers will range from initial estimates to highly refined statistical charts and analyses.

We hope to make research results public through electronic mediums, including CD-ROMs and the internet. We plan to simultaneously publish monograms in both English and Japanese explaining, analyzing, and interpreting the data (monograms might, for example, be produced by the research groups shown in Chart 1). The monograms would also serve as guidebooks for electronic mediums. (The issue of providing information through computers and the internet is currently generating difficult controversies regarding authors' rights. It will be necessary to deal with the issues of publicizing information and paying fees for information services.)

Finally, we will publish a newsletter on a quarterly basis in order to keep participants and observers informed on the course of the research.

To expedite communications with participants outside of Hitotsubashi University's Institute of Economic Research, a new telephone extension has been installed for use by the Asian Historical Statistics Project: 0425-72-1101 ext 4900. The Project fax number is 0425-75-5712. The Database Project leader may be reached by email at:

Chart 3

Asian Historical Statistics Project: First Research Workshop*

Sano Building

Hitotsubashi University

15 December 1995

Opening remarks

Konosuke Odaka

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

Session 1: Teach-In

Chair: Osamu Saito

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

"Problems in Connecting Time Series Data -- The Case of Taiwan"

Toshiyuki Mizoguchi

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

"Calculating National Income in order to Compile Long-term Economic Statistics"

Shigeru Ishiwata

International Christian University

Session 2: Reports

Chair: Juro Teranishi

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

"Problems and Resolutions in Compiling Long-term Economic Statistics on Asia"

Konosuke Odaka

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

"National Income Statistics for Thailand"

Masahiko Shintani

Department of Economics, Seinan Gakuin University


Yoshiro Matsuda

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

Group Meetings of Regional Research Teams

"Trade Statistics in the Economic History of Southeast Asia"

Kaoru Sugihara

School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London


Yuzo Yamamoto

Institute of Humanities, Kyoto University

*The workshop was conducted entirely in Japanese

Chart 4

Market and Government: Foes or Friends?

International Conference on the World Economy in Transition

8-10 February 1996 at Josui Kaikan in Tokyo

Session #1 (Thursday) Keynote Speech

Chairs: Takeaki Kariya (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

Juro Teranishi and Konosuke Odaka (Professors, Hitotsubashi University)

"Market Failures and Government Failures"

Session #2 (Thursday)

Government in the Process of Structural Adjustment of Developing Economies

Chair: Noriyuki Hirai (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

1. Yung Chul Park (President, Korea Institute of Finance, Professor, Korea University, Republic of Korea)

"The Role of Government in Economic Development: The Case of Korea"

2. Bishwanath Goldar (Professor, Institute of Economic Growth, Delhi, India)

"The Role of the State and the Market: The Case of India"

3. Anwar Nasution (Professor, University of Indonesia, Republic of Indonesia)

"Market Mechanism and Government: The Case of Indonesia Following the Economic Reforms Since the 1980s"

4. Vittorio Corbo (Professor, Ponticifia Universidad Catolica De Chile, Republic of Chile)

"Markets and Government in the New Economic Model"

5. Ibrahim A. Elbadawi (Research Coordinator, African Economic Research Consortium (AERC))

absinthe Relative Roles of Markets and Government in Africa's Reform Process"


Toru Yanagihara (Professor, Hosei University)

Howard Stein (Visiting Professor, Hitotsubashi Univ. and Associate Professor, Roosevelt University, USA)

Session #3 (Friday) The Great Transition: From Planned to Market Economies

Chair: Yukihiko Kiyokawa (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

1. Vladimir Popov (Head of Sector, Graduate School of International Business, Academy of National Economy, Russia)

"What the State Can and Cannot Do Under the Third Model of Transition (the Case of Russia)"

2. Jan Klacek (Director, Institute of Economics, Czech National Bank, Czech Republic)

"Economic Transformation, Exchange Rate and Capital Inflows in the Czech Republic"

3. Jinglian Wu (Professor and Senior Research Fellow, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and Development Research Center of the State Council, People's Republic of China) "China in the Great Transformation"

4. Wing Thye Woo (Professor, University of California, Davis, USA)

"The Mechanisms of Growth in China and Vietnam"


Tsuneaki Sato (Professor Emeritus, Yokohama Municipal University)

Shigeru Ishikawa (Professor Emeritus, Hitotsubashi University and Aoyama Gakuin University)

Session #4 (Friday) Market and Government in Japan's Experience

Chair: Noriyuki Takayama (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

1. Juro Hashimoto (Professor, University of Tokyo)

"Government as Intermediator, with Strategies in its Hands: The Case of the Japanese Shipbuilding Industry During the Postwar Reconstruction Period"

2. Iwao Nakatani (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

"Japan's Industrial Policy as a Coordination Process and It Implications for the Future"

3. Kotaro Suzumura (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

"Japanese Industrial Policy for Telecommunications: Anatomy of the 1985 Institutional Reform and Its Aftermath"


Tetsuji Okazaki (Associate Professor, University of Tokyo)

Takatoshi Ito (Professor, Hitotsubashi University and Senior Advisor, Research Dept., IMF)

Session #5 (Saturday) General Session

Chair: Ryoshin Minami (Professor, Hitotsubashi University)

Ronald P. Dore (Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science)

"Social Regulations and Economic Regulations: Is There Any Real Difference?"


Takashi Inoguchi (Vice-President, United Nations University)

Yutaka Kosai (President, Japan Center for Economic Research)

Chart 5

Asian Historical Statistics Project:

A Strategy Workshop

Sano Hall

Hitotsubashi University

4-5 March 1996

Session I: Brief Presentation and Discussion on Estimating Time Series

Afternoon (15-17 pm) 4 March 1996 (Monday)

"A Hundred-year Economic Development of Taiwan"

Professor Toshiyuki Mizoguchi

Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University

Discussant: To be announced

Informal Reception

Evening (17-19 pm), 4 March 1996 (Monday)

Session II: Interpreting Historical Economic Data (I)

Morning (10-11:30 am), 5 March 1996 (Tuesday)

"Modern Economic Growth of Select Asian Countries: A Quick

Overview of the Experiences of Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam"

Dr. Pierre van der Eng

Faculty of Economics and Commerce, Australian National University

Discussant: Professor Hiroyoshi Kano

Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo

Session IV: Interpreting Historical Economic Data (II)

Afternoon (13-15 pm), 5 March 1996 (Tuesday)

1) "National Income Statistics of India: Accomplishments and Future Tasks"

Dr. A. Vaidyanathan Honorable

Professor, Madras Institute of Development Studies

Discussant: Professor Shigeru Ishiwata

International Christian University

2) "Economic Statistics of the Russian Far East: A Review"

Dr. Paval A. Minakir

Director, Insititute of Economic Research , Russian Academy of Sciences in Vladivostok

Discussant: Professor Malcolm Falcus

Department of Economic History, University of New England