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Ulrike Schaede

Professor of Japanese Business; Executive Director, Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies


(858) 534-2357
Fax: (858) 534-3939

9500 Gilman Drive
La Jolla, CA 92093-0519

Office: #1317
Office Hours:

by appointment


Ph.D., Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany, 1989
    (summa cum laude, Japanese studies/economics)
M.A., Friedrich-Wilhelms Universität Bonn, Germany, 1987
    (Japanese studies/economics)
Translator's Diploma in Japanese,
    Friedrich-Wilhelms Universität Bonn, Germany, 1985

Programs and Centers

International Management Track

Japan Regional Concentration Program

Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies



Ulrike Schaede (ウリケ・シェーデ) is Professor of Japanese Business, Executive Director of the Center for Emerging and Pacific Economies, and the Head of the International Management Track at IR/PS. Before she joined IR/PS in 1994, she held research and assistent professor positions at Bonn University and the Philipps-Universtät in Marburg, both in Germany. She is fluent in Japanese and has spent a total of more than eight years of research and study in Japan, where she has been a Visiting Scholar at the research institutes of the Bank of Japan, Japan's Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and the Development Bank of Japan. She has also been invited as Visiting Faculty to the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley, the Harvard Business School, Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo, and the University of Duisburg-Essen in Germany.

Professor Schaede's main areas of research are Japan’s corporate strategy, business organization, management, financial markets, and government-business relations. Her book Choose and Focus: Japanese Business Strategies for the 21st Century (Cornell UP, 2008) explains the strategic inflection point of the early 2000s, when Japan’s business architecture began to change. Her current research concerns the management practices of what she calls “New Japan” companies. These are highly profitable, Japanese companies that have assumed global supply chain leadership in 21st century materials and components. She is also working on corporate restructuring, refocusing and M&A, changing human resource practices, and entrepreneurship in Japan.


Professor Schaede is an authority on Japanese business organization, strategy, and management. Her recent book, Choose and Focus: Japanese Business Strategies for the 21st Century (Cornell UP, 2008) argues that Japan has undergone a strategic inflection point so fundamental that relying on what we used to know about Japan from the 1980s is insufficient to understand the new Japanese competitiveness. In addition to analyzing this recent shift away from diversification to focused, lean organizations among Japan's leading companies, Schaede's research also includes the newly emerging takeover market in Japan, venture capital and startups as well as changing employment practices. Previous research has addressed regulation and government-business relationships in Japan; financial markets; corporate governance; welfare policies and small-sized companies in a changing Japan; and the role of trade associations and antitrust policy.

Current Projects

Schaede's ongoing research concerns corporate renewal and changing business strategies towards refocusing and competitiveness, as well as entrepreneurship in 21st century Japan.

Professional Activities

Member, Academic Advisory Board, DIJ (German Institute for Japanese Studies) Tokyo, Max-Weber Stiftung Germany, 2012-present.

Member, Editorial Board, Contemporary Japan (Journal of the German Institute for Japanese Studies Tokyo), 2009-present.

Member, International Editorial Board, Asien, 2004-present.

Research Associate, Columbia Business School, Center on Japanese Economy and Business (1999-present).

Member, Editorial Advisor Board, The Japanese Economy (2002-present).

Member, Academy of Management.

Member, Association of Japanese Business Studies.

Member, Association of Asian Studies.

Executive Member, Science Advisory Board, German Society for Asian Studies (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Asienkunde, Wissenschaftsbeirat) (2000-2004).

Member, Japan Task Force, Pacific Council on International Policy (2001-2003).

Research Interests

Schaede has written multiple books and papers on Japanese business organization and Japan's financial system. Her recent book, Choose and Focus: Japanese Business Strategies for the 21st Century, was published in 2008. Her co-edited volume with William Grimes, Japan's Managed Globalization: Adapting to the 21st Century (M.E. Sharpe 2003), analyzes the effects of changing Japan on international political economy. In 2000, Schaede published Cooperative Capitalism: Self-Regulation, Trade Associations and the Antimonopoly Law in Japan (Oxford UP), which analyzed anti-competitive behavior through industry associations in the postwar period (1950s-1990s). Other publications include articles on regulation such as “The ‘Old Boy’ Network and Government-Business Relationships in Japan" and "Cooperating to Compete: Determinants of a Sanctuary Strategy Among Japanese Firms.” Her research on Germany includes a paper titled “Functional Change and Bank Strategy in German Corporate Governance.”

Recent working papers discuss changes in Japan’s main bank system and corporate restructuring, entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as Japan in the current economic crisis. A full list of research publications can be found in her cv on the "Profile" page.

Recent Papers

For Op-Ed pieces, see the "Publications" tab.

"The market for corporate subsidiaries in Japan: An empirical study of trades among listed firms," Journal of The Japanese and International Economies, 2014.

"Sunshine and Suicides in Japan: revisiting the relevance of economic determinants of suicide," Contemporary Japan, 2013.

"Self-Employment in Japan: A Microanalysis of Personal Profiles," Social Science Japan Journal, 2013.

"Globalization and the Reorganization of Japan's Auto Parts Industry," in: International Journal of Automotive Technology and Management, 2009.

"Changes in Corporate Restructuring Processes in Japan, 1981-2007," Working Paper, Center on Japanese Economy and Business.

"Poverty and Politics: Evaluating Public Assistance in Japan"
Paper prepared for the 2006 Annual Meeting of the International Studies Association in San Diego. Please do not cite without our permission.

Publications of Note

For a complete list of publications, please refer to Schaede's CV.

Recent Publications

Op-Ed Pieces

東京の地下鉄は、世界一なのです! Nikkei Business Online (Japanese). June 24, 2014.

「失われた20年」は、実は「成長痛の20年」でした Nikkei Business Online (Japanese). June 9, 2014

日本に多大な利益をもたらす製品、それはスマホです! Nikkei Business Online (Japanese). May 26, 2014.

ニッポンの魅力は、「スシ」より「スイカ」! Nikkei Business Online (Japanese). May 12, 2014.

“Abenomics Needs Cheap Nuclear Power to Work.” Bloomberg. June 2, 2013.

“Japan’s Evolving Business Strategies.” Interview in The National Bureau of Asian Research. May 7, 2012.

"Let Tepco Go Bankrupt, If it Must" with Takeo Hoshi and Anil Kashyap. The Wall Street Journal. April 19, 2011.