The Economic Impact of Earthquakes in Modern Japan: Tokyo, Kôbe and Tôhoku


Presented by Professor Janet Hunter, London School of Economics

Start Date

6th Dec 2012 6:00pm

End Date

6th Dec 2012 7:30pm


Stanley Burbury Theatre, University Centre, Sandy Bay campus

RSVP / Contact Information

Enquiries: Mandy Pink - 6226 2790; RSVP: or phone 6226 2521

A public lecture presented by

Professor Janet Hunter

Saji Professor of Economic History at the London School of Economics


"The Economic Impact of Earthquakes in Modern Japan: Tokyo, Kōbe and Tōhoku"


Earthquakes occur frequently in Japan, and Japan has become a world leader in attempts to predict and prepare for such eventualities. Yet the difficulty of prediction has persisted, and the physical consequences of major earthquakes have continued to be devastating. Moreover, the damage goes far beyond actual physical loss. This lecture will consider the economic impact of such natural disasters, in particular their consequences for regions far beyond the affected area to the national, and even international, economies. It will focus on the three largest earthquakes in Japan since the start of the twentieth century: the Great Kantō (Tokyo and Yokohama) Earthquake of 1923, the Great Hanshin (Kōbe) Earthquake of 1995 and the Great Tōhoku (East Japan) Earthquake of 2011.

About the speaker

Janet Hunter is Saji Professor of Economic History at the London School of Economics. She has written widely on the economic development of modern Japan, in particular on the development of the female labour market, the history of Anglo-Japanese economic relations, and the development of communications. She is currently writing a book on the economic impact of the Great Kantō Earthquake. Her major publications include: Women and the Labour Market in Japan’s Industrialising Economy (2003, Japanese edition 2008) and The Historical Consumer: Consumption and Everyday Life in Japan, 1850-2000 (jt. ed. with P.G.Francks, 2012).


Presented in conjunction with the Economic History Society (UK)

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