This award will support a two-year U.S.-Japan cooperative research project between Professor Alex Inkeles, Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace, Stanford Univesity, and Professor Tatsuo Suzuki, Department of Interdisciplinary Statistical Mathematics, Institute of Statistical Mathematics, Tokyo. Professor Inkeles will travel to Japan to work with Professor Suzuki and Professor Chikio Hayashi, also affiliated with the Institute of Statistical Mathematics, on developing a common methodology for further comparative study of U.S. and Japanese national character. These two distinguished Japanese social scientists have been involved with the Japanese Research Committee on the Study of the Japanese National Character. Professor Inkeles, who is one of the leading experts on the study of national character, will bring a comparative viewpoint to the study, which will very likely lead to new developments in this topic. Although national character is often treated in qualitative terms that do not admit of scientific testing, one well established approach does rest on basic methods of social science. This approach defines national character as a set of relatively enduring psycho- social characteristics of individuals that are predominant in, or distinctive, or modal to a given national population. It thus becomes a special element in the general methodology for comparing nations. Taking that approach permits empirical testing to establish the actual characteristics of national and sub-national populations using either tests of personality, or, more commonly, attitudes and value scales applied to representative national samples at periodic intervals. This approach has been most systematically and consistently applied in the studies of the Research Committee on the Study of the Japanese National Character.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Office of International and Integrative Activities (IIA)
Standard Grant (Standard)
Application #
Program Officer
Patricia Jones Tsuchitani
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Stanford University
Palo Alto
United States
Zip Code