Quality of Life in Japan and Emigration: The Perspectives of Japanese Skilled Immigrants in Australia

Nana Oishi, Iori Hamada

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


The number of Japanese citizens living outside Japan has been increasing in the last four decades: it has risen almost threefold since the mid-1980s. What drives Japanese nationals to move away from their home country? Drawing on the narratives of 32 Japanese skilled immigrants in Australia, this study argues that their perceptions of QOL haves played a major role. These perceptions differ across individuals’ life stage and gender, and particularly the time of immigration. This study found distinctive differences in the QOL perceptions between those who arrived before the Great East Japan Earthquake and Fukushima disasters in 2011 and those who came after 2011. Many studies have already pointed out the significance of “lifestyle migration,” where non-economic factors have attracted Japanese immigrants to Australia. While acknowledging its importance for those who arrived before 2011, this study found that the most prominent drivers for the post-2011 Japanese immigrants were not lifestyle, but rather their acute perceptions of environmental, economic, and socio-political risks that could undermine the long-term QOL for themselves and their families.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuality of Life in Japan
Subtitle of host publicationContemporary Perspectives on Happiness
EditorsMing-Chang Tsai , Noriko Iwai
Place of PublicationSigapore
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9789811389108
ISBN (Print)9789811389092
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Publication series

NameQuality of Life in Asia
ISSN (Print)2211-0550
ISSN (Electronic)2211-0569


  • Quality of life
  • Skilled immigrants
  • Work-life balance
  • Gender equality
  • Environmental risk
  • Disaster management
  • Australia
  • Japan skilled immigrants

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