The Shape of Japan: Backgrounds, Materials and Methods

  • Tomoki NakayaEmail author
  • Keisuke Fukui
  • Yuri Ito
  • Keiji Yano
  • Yuzuru Isoda
  • Naoki Kondo
Part of the Global Perspectives on Health Geography book series (GPHG)


This chapter contains sections which provide background information about Japanese society and health including long-term transition of mortality, newly emergent socially vulnerable populations from the lost decades, the recent earthquake disaster whose impacts are readable in many mortality maps and social area formation in contemporary Japanese metropolitan areas. In addition, this chapter explains how to read the maps and graphs shown in later chapters. The materials and methods used to construct the health inequality atlas include the spatial unit for mapping, mortality indices with the data source and measurements of social inequalities in the mortality indices using areal deprivation index. Several analytical concepts such as the prismic cartogram, slope index of inequality and relative index of inequality are introduced.


Geographical units Epidemiological transition Lost decades Social areas Census-based deprivation index The Great East Japan Earthquake Prismic cartogram Slope index of inequality Relative index of inequality Mortality indices 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tomoki Nakaya
    • 1
    Email author
  • Keisuke Fukui
    • 2
  • Yuri Ito
    • 2
  • Keiji Yano
    • 3
  • Yuzuru Isoda
    • 4
  • Naoki Kondo
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Frontier Science for Advanced EnvironmentGraduate School of Environmental Studies, Tohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  2. 2.Department of Medical StatisticsResearch and Development Center, Osaka Medical CollegeTakatsukiJapan
  3. 3.Department of GeographyCollege of Letters, Ritsumeikan UniversityKyotoJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of ScienceTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  5. 5.Department of Health Education and Health SociologySchool of Public Health, The University of TokyoTokyoJapan

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