Takao Kato

Back to Directory

Takao Kato

W.S. Schupf Professor in Far Eastern Studies, Professor of Economics

Department/Office Information

219 Persson Hall


Takao Kato pioneered the econometric analysis of employee participation and innovative work practices of Japanese and Korean firms. While continuing to work in this area, he has also been studying corporate governance, executive compensation, and promotion tournament in Japan, Korea, China, and Denmark. Kato's most recent research involves econometric case studies of firms in the U.S., China, Finland, Denmark, and Japan, with particular focus on high-performance work practices as well as career development and promotion tournament including gender gaps in the workplace. 

Kato is Research Fellow, IZA-Bonn; Research Associate, CJEB (Columbia Business School) and CCP (Copenhagen Business School and Aarhus University); Faculty Fellow and Mentor, SMLR (Rutgers); Research Fellow, TCER-Tokyo; and Senior Fellow, ETLA(Helsinki). He has held visiting professorships in Japan (Tokyo, Hitotsubashi, Keio, Osaka, Japan Institute of Labour), Korea (KDI School of Public Policy and Management), Australia (New South Wales), Denmark (Aarhus and Copenhagen Business School), and the U.S. (Stanford and Levy Institute). Kato along with Perter Kuhn founded Trans-Pacific Labor Seminar and has been playing a leading role in the community of mainstream labor economists in the Pacific Rim. Kato has been Series Editor of Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory and Labor-Managed Firms since 2008, and has been Co-Editor of the Journal of the Japanese and International Economies also since 2008. Most recently Kato along with Richard Freeman launched a new journal with Emerald, Journal of Participation and Employee Ownership.  He received his Ph.D. in economics from Queen’s University, Canada in 1986.

Labor economics, industrial relations and human resource management, corporate governance, East Asian economies (in particular Japanese economy)

Employee participation and innovative work practices, compensation methods, peer effects in the workplace, career development and promotion tournament, corporate governance, economics of transition, skilled immigration, and gender gaps in the workplace. 

Select Articles in Refereed Journals

  • “Human Capital and Career Success: Evidence from Linked Employer-Employee Data,” (Economic Journal, 2018, with Anders Frederiksen). 
  • "Deregulating Overtime Hours Restrictions on Women and Its Effects on Female Employment: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Japan." (Oxford Bulletin of Economics & Statistics, 2018, with Naomi Kodama).
  • “The Effect of Corporate Social Responsibility on Gender Diversity in the Workplace: Econometric Evidence from Japan,” British Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 56, No. 1, March 2018, pp. 99-127 (British Journal of Industrial Relations, 2018, with Naomi Kodama).
  • “Performance Pay and Enterprise Productivity: The Details Matter,” (Journal of Participation and Employee Ownership, 2018, with Antti Kauhanen).
  • “Long-term Employment and Job Security over the Last Twenty-Five Years: A Comparative Study of Japan and the U.S.,” (ILR Review 2017, with Ryo Kambayashi)
  • “Complementarities between Employee Involvement and Financial Participation: Do Institutional Context, Differing Measures, and Empirical Methods Matter?” (ILR Review, 2017, with Derek D. Jones, Panu Kalmi, and Mikko Makinen).
  • “Incremental Innovation and Competitive Pressure in the Presence of Discrete Innovation,” (Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2017, with Arghya Ghosh, and Hodaka Morita).
  • “Competition and Social Identity in the Workplace: Evidence from a Chinese Textile Firm,” (Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2016, with Pian Shu). 
  • “Efficiency in Employee-Owned Enterprises: an Econometric Case Study of Mondragon,” (ILR Review, 2015, with Saioa Arando, Monica Gago, and Derek C. Jones). 
  • “Quotas and Quality: The Effect of H-1B Visa Restrictions on the Pool of Prospective Undergraduate Students from Abroad,” (Review of Economics and Statistics, 2013, with Chad Sparber)
  • "Adverse Workplace Conditions, High-Involvement Work Practices and Labor Turnover: Evidence from Danish Linked Employer-Employee Data," (Labour Economics, 2012, with Elena Cottini and Niels Westergaard Nielsen)
  • “Market Characteristics, Intra-Firm Coordination, and the Choice of Human Resource Management Systems: Evidence from New Japanese Data," (Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2012, with Hideo Owan)
  • “The Impact of Teams on Output, Quality and Downtime: An Empirical Analysis Using Individual Panel Data,” (Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 2011, with Derek Jones).
  • “High Performance Work Practices and Employee Voice: A Comparison of Japanese and Korean Workers,” (Industrial Relations, 2011, with Kiu-Sik Bae, Hiroyuki Chuma, Dong-Bae Kim, and Isao Ohashi).
  • “Tournaments and Managerial Incentives in China’s Listed Firms: New Evidence,” (China Economic Review, 2011, with Cheryl Long).
  • "Executive Turnover and Firm Performance in China," (American Economic Review (P&P), 2006, with Cheryl Long)
  • "Executive Compensation, Firm Performance, and Corporate Governance in China: Evidence from Firms Listed in the Shanghai and Shenzen Stock Exchanges," (Economic Development and Cultural Change, 2006, with Cheryl Long)
  • "The Productivity Effects of Participatory Employment Practices: Evidence from New Japanese Panel Data" (Industrial Relations, 2002, with Motohiro Morishima)
  • "The End of 'Lifetime Employment' In Japan?: Evidence from National Surveys and Field Research" (Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, 2001)
  • "Chief Executive Compensation and Corporate Groups in Japan: New Evidence from Micro Data" (International Journal of Industrial Organization, 1997)
  • "The Nature and the Determinants of Labor Market Transitions in Former Communist Economies: Evidence from Bulgaria" (Industrial Relations, 1997, with Derek Jones)
  • "The Productivity Effects of Employee Stock Ownership Plans and Bonuses: Evidence from Japanese Panel Data" (American Economic Review, 1995, with Derek Jones)

Other articles in Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Industrial Relations, Journal of Comparative Economics, Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Economic Inquiry, Economics Letters, Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Labour Economics, British Journal of Industrial Relations, Japan and the World Economy, International Journal of Human Resource Management, International Review of Economics and Finance, International Journal of Manpower, Ricerche Economiche, International Economic Journal, Japanese Journal of Labor Studies, and other refereed journals.

Edited Volume and Recent Book Chapters

  • The Determinants of the Incidence and the Effects of Participatory Organizations, Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory and Labor-Managed Firms Volume 7 (Elsevier/JAI, 2003)
  • “High-Involvement Work Systems in Japan, the U.S. and Korea: Evidence from Field Research,” in Jaime Ortega, ed., Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory and Labor-Managed Firms, International Perspectives on Participation: Decision Rights and Incentives, Volume 15 (Bingley: Emerald), 2014, pp. 95-119
  • “Assessing Mondragon: Stability and Managed Change in the face of Globalization,” in Carberry, Edward, ed., Employee Ownership and Shared Capitalism: New Directions in Research (ILR Press: Ithaca), 2011, pp. 241-271 (with Saioa Arando, Fred Freundlich, Monica Gago, and Derek C. Jones)
  • “The Japanese Employment System after the Bubble Burst: New Evidence,” in Koichi Hamada, Anil Kashyap, Masahiro Kuroda, and David Weinstein, eds., Japan’s Bubble, Deflation, and Stagnation (MIT Press: Cambridge), 2011, pp. 217-262 (with Ryo Kambayashi).
  • “The Productivity Effects of Profit Sharing, Employee Ownership, Stock Option, and Team Incentives: Evidence from Korean Panel Data,” in Tor Eriksson, ed., Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory and Labor-Managed Firms Volume 11 (Emerald: Bingley), 2010, pp. 111-136 (with Ju Ho Lee and Jang-Soo Ryu).
  • “Managerial Discretion, Business Strategy, and the Quality of Jobs: Evidence from Medium-Sized Manufacturing Establishments in Central New York,” in Eileen Appelbaum, Annette Bernhardt, and Richard Murnane, eds., Low-Wage America: How Employers are Reshaping Opportunity in the Workplace (Russell Sage Foundation: New York), 2003, pp. 479-526 (with Derek Jones and Adam Weinberg).
  • "The Recent Transformation of Participatory Employment Practices in Japan," in Seiritsu Ogura, Toshiaki Tachibanaki, and David Wise, eds., NBER Conference Report Labor Markets and Firm Benefit Policies in Japan and the United States (University of Chicago Press: Chicago), 2003, pp. 39-80 (a longer version of the paper is available in NBER Working Paper W7965).
  • Founding Editor, Journal of Participation and Employee Ownership, 2017-
  • Series Editor, Advances in the Economic Analysis of Participatory and Labor-managed Firms, 2008-2017
  • Co-Editor, Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, 2008-present
  • Founder, Trans-Pacific Labor Seminar, 2007-present
  • Research Fellow, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), Germany; September 2005 to present.
  • Research Associate, Center on Japanese Economy and Business, Columbia Business School, USA; November 2000 to present.
  • Faculty Fellow and Mentor, School of Management and Labor Relations, Rutgers University, USA; 2015 to present.
  • Research Fellow, Tokyo Center for Economic Research, Japan; April 2001 to present.
  • Research Associate, Center for Corporate Performance, Copenhagen Business School and Aarhus University, Denmark; September 2007 to present.
  • Senior Fellow, ETLA (the Research Institute of the Finnish Economy); 2013 to present.
  • Visiting Professor, Hitotsubashi University, Japan; August 2019-October 2019.
  • JSPS (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) Invitational Fellow, Waseda University, Japan; May 2018-July 2018. 
  • Velux Visiting Professor, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark; October 2015 and May 2016-July 2016.
  • Visiting Professor, Aarhus University, Denmark; May 2014-July 2014.
  • Visiting Professor, Hitotsubashi University, Japan; May 2013-August 2013.
  • Visiting Professor, the University of Tokyo, Japan; May 2012 to June 2012.
  • Velux Visiting Professor, Aarhus School of Business, Denmark; July 2006 to August 2009 and July 2012 to August 2012.
  • Otto Mønsted Visiting Professor, Aarhus School of Business, Denmark; July 2010 to August 2011.
  • Visiting Professor of Economics, Stanford University, USA; Spring Quarter 2006.
  • Visiting Professor of Economics, Helsinki School of Economics, Finland; March 2006.
  • Consultant, Asian Development Bank Institute, Japan; May 2003 to April 2006.
  • Visiting Professor, Department of Economics, University of New South Wales, Australia; August 2004.
  • Distinguished Visiting Professor, KDI School of Public Policy and Management, Korea; Summer 2003 and Summer 2004.
  • Visiting Professor, Hitotsubashi University, Japan; July 2002 - September 2002.
  • Visiting Researcher, Japan Institute of Labour, Japan; May 1999 - June 1999.
  • Research Associate, The Jerome Levy Economics Institute, USA; January 1995 - August 1997.
  • Resident Scholar, the Jerome Levy Economics Institute, USA; January 1994 - December 1994.
  • Visiting Researcher, Keio Economic Observatory, Keio University, Japan: July 1993 - September 1993.
  • Visiting Scholar, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University Japan; January 1989 - December 1989.
  •  LISER (Luxembourg Institute for Socio-Economic Research), International Mentor, January 2017-January 2020
  • JSPS (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) Invitational Fellowship for Research in Japan, May 2018 to July 2018
  • Velux Visiting Professorship, October 2015 to July 2016  
  • ILO, External Collaborator, April 2013 to October 2013 
  • Velux Visiting Professorship, July 2012 to August 2012 
  • Otto Mønsted Visiting Professorship, July 2010 to June 2012 
  • Economic and Social Research Institute (Cabinet Office, Government of Japan) Grant, 2007-2009 (PI)
  • Suntory Foundation Grant, 2006-2008 (PI)
  • NSF, 2005-2009 (PI)
  • Korea Labor Institute, 2005-2006 (PI)
  • Japan Center for Economic Research, 2003-2004 (PI)
  • Social Science Research Council Grant, 2002 (PI)
  • Russell Sage and Rockefeller Foundations grant, 2000-2001 (PI)
  • National Bureau of Economic Research grant, 1998-2000 (PI)
  • Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan grant, 1996-97 (co-PI)
  • Japan Institute of Labour grant, 1993-97 (co-PI)
  • National Council for Soviet and East European research grant, 1993-94 (PI)
  • Abe Fellowship, 2002-2003
  • Jerome Levy Economics Institute Resident Fellowship, 1994