Ministry of Industry (Japan)
The Ministry of Industry (工部省 Kōbushō) was a cabinet-level ministry in the Daijō-kan system of government of the Meiji period Empire of Japan from 1870-1885. It is also sometimes referred to as the “Ministry of Public Works” or the “Ministry of Engineering” or “Ministry of Construction”.
The Ministry of Industry was created on December 12, 1870 out of the Ministry of Popular Affairs. The new organization was tasked by the Meiji oligarchy with the creation of the infrastructure of modern Japan, including railroads, shipyards, lighthouses, mines, an iron and steel industry, glass plants, cement factories and textile plants, a telegraph bureau, and street lights. It employed numerous foreign advisors during its existence. It also created the Imperial College of Engineering (the predecessor of the Tokyo Imperial University College of Engineering). One of the key roles of the ministry was locating, and if necessary, reverse engineering overseas technology. For example, in 1877, only a year after the invention of the telephone, engineers employed by the ministry had obtained examples and were attempting to create a domestic version. By the mid-1880s, many of the industries created by the Ministry of Industry were privatized. With the establishment of the cabinet system under the Meiji Constitution on December 22, 1885, the ministry was abolished, with its functions divided between the new Ministry of Agriculture and Commerce and the Ministry of Communications.
|Name||Kanji||in office||out of office|
|Minister (工部卿, Kōbu-kyō)|
|Itō Hirobumi||伊藤 博文||October 25, 1873||May 15, 1878|
|Inoue Kaoru||井上 馨||July 29, 1878||September 10, 1879|
|Yamada Akiyoshi||山田 顕義||September 10, 1879||February 28, 1880|
|Yamao Yōzō||山尾 庸三||February 28, 1880||October 21, 1881|
|Sasaki Takayuki||佐々木 高行||October 21, 1881||December 22, 1885|
|Vice-Minister (工部大輔, Kōbu-taifu)|
|Yamao Yōzō||山尾 庸三||October 27, 1872||February 28, 1880|
|Yoshii Tomozane||吉井 友実||June 17, 1880||January 10, 1882|
|Inoue Masaru||井上 勝||July 8, 1882||December 22, 1885|
- Smith, Thomas Carlyle (1955). Political Change and Industrial Development in Japan. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-0469-4.
- Nelson, Richard R (1993). National Innovation Systems : A Comparative Analysis: A Comparative Analysis. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-536043-5.
- Fukasaku, Yukiko (2013). Technology and Industrial Growth in Pre-War Japan:. Routledge. ISBN 1-134-96401-3.
- Morris-Suzuki, Teresa (1994). The Technological Transformation of Japan. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-42492-5.
- Morris-Suzuki. The Technological Transformation of Japan. page 73.
- Fukasaku. Technology and Industrial Growth in Pre-War Japan. Pages 18, 40
- Nelson. National Innovation Systems. Page 95