S-Space Graduate School of International Studies (국제대학원) Dept. of International Studies (국제학과) 국제지역연구 국제지역연구 vol.04 (1995)
일본의 사회교육과 공민관 - 川崎市 시민관을 중심으로 : The Social Education and Civic Hall (Kominkan) in Japan: A Case Study of Kawasaki City
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 지역종합연구소
- 지역연구, Vol.04 No.4, pp. 183-202
- In Japan, social education refers to the organized, extra-school programs in learning, recreation and sports provided mainly for the youth and adults. A public institution called civic hall (kominkan) has played a pivotal part in the social education of post-war Japan. This paper examines the current state and future prospect of the social education and kominkan, based on a case study of Kawasaki City.
Instituted in the late 1940s as a part of the drastic educational reform, kominkan has been settled in Japan through the modernization of facilities and personnel in the 1960s and the remarkable expansion of activities in the 1970s. Since the 1980s, however, there have been concerns that the recent administrative and educational reforms stressing rationalization, private sector initiative, globalization, and national competitiveness are likely to lead to the weakening of kominkan. The analysis shows that the national policy change has not produced uniform repercussions at a local level. The overhaul of social education system in Kawasaki for the past decade has taken the course of strengthening kominkan, laying increased emphasis on the principle of citizen participation and local autonomy. The continued stay in power of the progressive city administration since 1971 provides a backdrop for the development.
The role of kominkan and social education has been limited in serving for the realization of participatory democracy and local autonomy. The experimental programs recently undertaken by kominkan in Kawasaki, however, exemplify the possibilities and directions to invigorate the social education of kominkan: increased attention to the socially disadvantaged who have been forgotten in the social education and strengthened ties with community. The continued commitment of officials will be a key to the vitality of kominkan and social education.