The study of urban form in Japan

Shigeru Satoh, Kenjirou Matsuura, Satoshi Asano

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Five aspects of urban morphology in Japan are reviewed. First, the study of castle towns is considered in terms of both the compositional principles and generative processes of these towns. Secondly, research on historical Machinami and Machiya is examined with a view to establishing a set of guidelines and theories for urban conservation. Thirdly, a revision of perspectives on the modernization of urban form and spaces between the latenineteenth century and the middle of the twentieth century is proposed. Fourthly, investigations are described of over-populated urban areas, including those on the periphery of large cities, in relation to the potential of the Machizukuri movement as a method of upgrading such areas. Finally, the particularities of Japanese methods in designing and planning are examined with a view to overcoming the sterile view that to modernize is necessarily to Westernize.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-166
Number of pages10
JournalUrban Morphology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Castle town
  • Japan
  • Machizukuri
  • Modernization
  • Morphology
  • Overpopulated district

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urban Studies
  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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