Libraries in Japan – Save The Library

Our friends in Japan are dealing with more pressing problems, but librarians in Japan have created a Web site  called “Save The Library” to help libraries impacted by the earthquake and tsunami.

The Wiki is posting information on disaster management, recruitment of volunteers, and expedited ILL, among other topics. Most postings are in Japanese.

Save The Library

Hat tip to Takako Okada.

Index Database to Japanese Laws, Regulations and Bills

From one of the latest issues of the National Diet Library Newsletter (No. 173, June 2010)

In May 2010, the Index Database to Japanese Laws, Regulations and Bills (Japanese only) was renewed.

Along with the Index Database to Laws and Regulations in early Meiji Japan (Japanese only), this database makes searchable information on Japanese laws from the formation of modern nation to the present.

  • Improvements are as follows:
  • ■Texts of the laws and regulations provided by national institutions via the Internet are linked and referable from index information.
  • ■Information on the bills introduced in the Imperial Diet (1890 to 1947) is added.
  • ■Other improvements
  • URL of the index information is fixed, which enables the users to bookmark a specific law or regulation.
  • Link to the Index Database to Laws and Regulations in early Meiji Japan is established.

Index Database to Japanese Laws, Regulations and Bills (Japanese language only)

  • Popular names of laws and regulations and classification of active laws are shown in the search results.
  • Tokyo Metropolitan Government Greenhouse Gas Emissions Program

    Japan Times published an article on Tokyo’s new greenhouse gas emissions regime:

    Tokyo’s CO2 cap-and-trade may set national standard.

    by Maya Kaneko

    Japan Times, Thursday , April 8th.

    Financial Times also has an article on Tokyo’s new program.

    Excerpts from the Japan Times article:

    Under the leadership of Gov. Shintaro Ishihara, Tokyo aims to slash its carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gas emissions by 25 percent compared with 2000 levels by 2020. The program caps energy-related carbon dioxide emissions from some 1,330 offices and factories in the capital and allows for trading of emissions credits.

    About 1,330 offices, commercial buildings and factories that annually consume the crude oil equivalent of more than 1,500 kiloliters of energy will be required to cut total carbon dioxide emissions over the fiscal 2010-2014 period by 6 percent to 8 percent from base-year levels.

    Base-year levels are calculated from average emissions over a past period of three consecutive years between fiscal 2002 and 2007. Office buildings face an 8 percent target and factories are subject to a 6 percent goal.

    In the fiscal 2015-2019 second phase, they will be required to slash emissions by 17 percent from their base-year levels.

    To meet the targets, offices and factories can either make efforts on their own, such as updating to energy-saving equipment, or purchase emissions credits from other entities that have reduced their carbon dioxide output by more than the obligated levels in a system known as cap and trade.

    They can also buy credits earned through reduction efforts by small and medium-size companies in Tokyo and the entities’ large-scale branch offices outside the capital. Renewable energy certificates issued by power generators can be also purchased.

    RUNNERS – TOC service from Ritsumeikan University

    RUNNERS, Ritsumeikan University New Episteme Academic Information Retrieval System, is a free table of contents service for academic journals from around the world. RUNNERS includes journals from many disciplines, so you need to dig to find the legal publications. Author and title searching is also available. Many thanks to the folks at Ritsumeiken Univeristy in Japan for this useful service.


    Costs and Funding of Civil Litigation: A Comparative Study

    Christopher  Hodges, Stefan Vogenauer and Magdalena Tubilacka have published the following article on SSRN:   Costs and Funding of Civil Litigation: A Comparative Study.

    Costs and Funding of Civil Litigation: A Comparative Study

    Countries studied are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, England and Wales, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, USA.  

    The Appendices look very interesting

    I. Questionnaire 49

    II. Contributors to the Comparative Study 53

    III. Ranges of Lawyers’ Hourly Rates 55

    IV. Case Studies: Minimum costs risk for claimant 58

    V. Summaries of amounts of Court Fees and Lawyers’ Fees 73

    VI. Success and Contingency Fees 81

    VII. Abbreviations 83

    Rule of Law Index

    The World Justice Forum meeting in Vienna, Austria has just released the Rule of Law Index. The Index uses numerical indicators to gauge the strength of rule of law in 35 countries, including developed and developing countries.

    Here are the 4 broad criteria , with sub-categories, used to create the scores  for each country. It includes compliance with international law.

    1. Accountable Government

    Government powers limited by constitution

    Governmental and non‐governmental checks

    Accountable government officials and agents

    Accountable military, police, and prison officials

    Compliance with international law


    2. Publicized and stable laws that protect fundamental rights

    Laws are clear, publicized and stable

    Laws protect fundamental rights

    Laws protect security of the person

    Laws protect security of property

    3. Accessible, fair, and efficient process

    Accessible process

    Fair and efficient administration


    4. Access to Justice

    Impartial and accountable judicial system  

    Efficient, accessible and effective judicial system

    Competent and independent attorneys or representatives

    Fair and efficient alternative dispute resolution

    Rule of Law Index 2009

    Japanese Law Translation

    Hap tip to Ben Jones for pointing out that these are unofficial translations.

    Japan’s Ministry of Justice has a new Website that offers unofficial English translations of thousands of Japanese statutes and regulations. The site provides bilingual versions of the laws and regulations. It also includes lexicographic notes explaining the translation of difficult terms. Here is an example of Article 1 of the Copyright Act of 1970:




    Article 1 The purpose of this Act is to provide for, and to secure protection of, the rights of authors, etc. and the rights neighboring thereto with respect [copyrightable] works as well as performances, phonograms, broadcasts and wire-broadcasts, while giving due regard to the fair exploitation of these cultural products, and by doing so, to contribute to the development of culture

    The site’s bilingual dictionary is a wonderful resource that not only provides translations, but also links to statutes and regulations that use a specific term or phrase.

    Japanese Law Translation

    New Journal: Journal of Korean Judicature

    The Supreme Court of Korea has recently published the first volume of the  “Journal of Korean Judicature.” The majority of articles are in English with additional contributions in Chinese, Japanese, French and German. Articles cover civil procedure, family law, medical law, commercial law, taxation, bankruptcy, intellectual property, and labor.  I have not found a Web site for this journal. Kamsamnida to our friends in Korea for this useful new publication.

    Journal of Korean Judicature. Volume 1, 2008

    Court Publications Registration Number 32-9740029000168-10

    Japanese Law Librarians Blog

    Takako Okada has created an English language blog dedicated to Japanese legal research called “Japanese Law Librarians Blog.” Ms. Okada is a law librarian at Keio University Library.  This promises to be a great resource for tracking developments in Japan. For example, her latest post mentions a site that offers Japanese legislation in English. Domo arigato gozaimas to Takako Okada for this useful new blog.

    Japanese Law Librarians Blog

    AsiaLinks from the National Diet Library of Japan

    Many thanks to the Librarians at the National Diet Library of Japan for maintaining the AsiaLinks site. Arranged by country, AsiaLinks offers limks to administrative, legislative and judicial sites. In addition to legal categories, AsiaLInk also includes links to libraries, research institutes, political parties, country search engines and periodicals. All country categories appear in Japanese and English.