In a polity that embraces popular sovereignty and representative democracy, the people, acting through their representatives in the legislative assembly, are deemed to be the source of power. The exercise of power over people is legitimized by the fact that they are given the right to vote by their membership of the polity—the identification of the governor and the governed. This legitimacy structure has actually and quintessentially been assured by the nation state, a polity that is composed of a nation. Its membership, called nationality or citizenship, is usually required for the right to vote to be given. As a consequence, foreign residents who are not citizens are not qualified to be represented however affected they may be by political power of their state of residence. This discrepancy between representedness and affectedness gives a conceptual framework to our panels. My paper aims to give an overview of it and map out each of the following papers therein.
In order to promote integration of foreign residents into host society, it might be helpful to represent their opinion to the policy making of the city where they reside. According to the Supreme Court of Japan, the right to vote is limited to Japanese for the national level elections, while it is up to the legislator to grant the right to vote in subnational level, which has not been realized as far. In order to ensure proper representation of foreign residents the City of Kawasaki took an initiative to create a local consultative council. The Council was made after the model of Frankfurt (Germany) and has a tradition since 1996. This paper examines how this council affects the policy-making of the City as well as whether this initiative to include foreign Residents in policy-making helps their integration into the society.
Emigrants have a significant impact not only on the political systems of cities which they arrive at but also on those of communities from where they depart. On the process of urbanization, some of the people who flow into cities become challengers against the existing political order there. In the early 20th century Japan, many of them advocated urban development through international trade and got support from middle class and labours. Interestingly, most of the new leaders equated the growth of their towns with that of the state, although the central government tried to control emigrants. This paper aims to examine how international migrants affect the political order in local communities where they depart and the policy of the central government.