Dr Peter Matanle

Core Researcher
Director of Research (Social Change and Transition in East Asia cluster) 
+44 (0)114 222 8407
Areas of Expertise
  • Economic sociology of work and organizations.
  • Employment systems in Japan and Europe.
  • Japan's regional development.
  • Demographic and social change.

2001 PhD (Japanese Studies/Sociology), Sheffield; 1996 MA (Japanese Studies), Essex; 1985 BA (History), St. John's College, Cambridge.

Visit my staff profile at the University of Sheffield for the most detailed and up-to-date version of my profile.


Peter Matanle joined the School of East Asian Studies in 2001 after working as Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at Niigata University in Japan.

Dr. Matanle's research interests are in the sociology of work and employment in Japan. His first book was based on his PhD dissertation and was an investigation of the so-called 'lifetime employment system' in large Japanese corporations. More recently, Dr. Matanle has co-edited a book with Dr. Wim Lunsing in the Netherlands on the sociology and anthropology of work and employment in Japan.

Dr Matanle has an interest in internet communications and the world wide web and is the founder and general editor of the electronic journal of contemporary japanese studies (www.japanesestudies.org.uk).

Research Projects

From 2004-2006 Dr. Matanle was the recipient of a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Post-doctoral Research Scholarship to Niigata University, where he is collaborating with Professor Kenji Matsui of the Faculty of Education and Human Sciences in a long term study of Japanese and British university students' career attitudes.

Recently Dr. Matanle has also been working and publishing on the relationships between education, employment and depopulation in Japanese rural areas, and especially Sado Island in Niigata Prefecture.

Research Supervision

Peter Matanle welcomes applications from prospective PhD students in the field of the sociology of work in Japan. He is currently supervising two PhD candidates. The first is studying workforce diversity in Japanese companies, and the second is investigating human resource management in Japanese multi-nationals.

PhD Theses Supervised

  • ISHIGURO, Kuniko, Generating Equal Employment Opportunities: The Work and Life of Female Managers in Japanese Companies (Degree confirmed in 2008, To be awarded 2009)
  • MCDONALD, Darren, Managing Workforce Diversity in Japanese Companies (Part-Time Remote Location, Commenced: 2005)
  • WOOZLEY, Ian, Human Resource Management in Japanese Multi-National Companies (Leeds University WREAC Scholar, Commenced: 2008)


Books and Edited Collections

  • Perspectives on Work, Employment and Society in Japan, Co-edited with Wim Lunsing, Basingstoke: PalgraveMacmillan, 2006. (Reviewed by Jeff Kingston for the 'Far Eastern Economic Review', March, 2007, 60-63).
  • Japanese Capitalism and Modernity in a Global Era: Re-fabricating Lifetime Employment Relations, London and New York, RoutledgeCurzon, 2003. (Reviewed by Leo McCann for 'Organization', 12 (1), 2005, 142-144).
  • East Asia Research Review: Proceedings of the First Post-Graduate Conference in East Asian Studies, British Association for Japanese Studies, 1999.

Journal Articles

  • "Men Under Pressure: Representations of the 'Salaryman' and his Organization in Japanese Manga", Organization, 15 (5), 2008, 639-64. (Co-authored with Leo McCann and Darren Ashmore)
  • "Forty Years on: Researching the Globalization of the Japanese Firm in the UK", Asian Business and Management, 6 (4), 2007, 431-449.
  • "Organic Sources for the Revitalization of Rural Japan: The Craft Potters of Sado", Japanstudien 18, 2006, 149-180.
  • "The Habit of a Lifetime? Japanese and British University Students' Attitudes to Permanent Employment", Japan Forum, 18 (2), 2006, 229-254.
  • "Driving the Modern Dream", Housei Riron, 33 (4), March 2001, 103-150.

Book Chapters

  • "Shrinking Sado: Education, Employment and the Decline of Japan's Rural Regions", Chapter 6, Shrinking Cities - Case Study Japan, 2008, 42-53.
  • "Beyond Lifetime Employment? Re-fabricating Japan's Employment Culture", in Matanle, Peter and Lunsing, Wim (eds) Perspectives on Work, Employment and Society in Japan, Basingstoke: PalgraveMacMillan, 2006, 58-78.
  • "Igirisu: Igirisu no shihonshugi - Nihon no shihonshugi" (Great Britain: British Capitalism - Japanese Capitalism), in Kubo, Akira, Kikkawa, Takeo, and Hook, Glenn D. (eds) Gendai Nihon Kigyou 3: Guroubaru Rebiuu; (The Contemporary Japanese Enterprise Vol. 3: Global Review), Tokyo: Yuuhikaku, 2005, 143-166.
  • "From Outside-In to Inside-Out: The Emergence of Capitalist Modernity in Contemporary Japan", in Anglo-Japanese Academy Proceedings, International Center for Comparative Law and Politics, Tokyo: ICCLP Publications, 2002, 449-455.
  • "Coping with Modernity: Man and Company in Contemporary Japan", East Asia Research Review: Proceedings of the First UK Post-Graduate Conference in East Asian Studies, 1999, 1-12.