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The Public Opinion Myth: Why Japan Retains the Death Penalty (2015)

  • Reports and Studies
  • 5 Aug 2015

This report, co-authored by Mai Sato and Paul Bacon, confronts the Japanese government’s assertion that the majority in favour of capital punishment in Japan is so large that it cannot be ignored by a democratic government. It complements our other published reports analysing public attitudes to the death penalty (in MalaysiaTrinidad & Tobago and Japan) and forms part of the DPP publication series.

The Japanese version of the report was launched in Japan in August 2015 at the Foreign Correspondence Club.

The launch of the English version of the report was followed by a screening of a documentary ‘The Wavering Public? The Death Penalty, Justice, and Public Opinion’ based on a deliberative poll conducted by the authors.

Related media articles:

‘Public support for death penalty not overwhelming, researchers say’, Japan Times, 16 September 2015

Support lacking for death penalty’, Acumen, September 2015


Corrections for the report (Japanese version)

Download the report (Japanese version)


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