JEAIL > Volume 6(2); 2013 > Issue Focus
Research Paper
Published online: November 30, 2013

Implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women in Japan

Yoko Hayashi
Athena Law Office, Japan
4th floor, Kaishin Building, 7-12-5 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, 104-0061 ,Japan.
Corresponding Author:

ⓒ Copyright YIJUN Institute of International Law
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Upon Japan's ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women in 1985, certain law reforms for gender equality were realized. However, international human rights law has impacted limitedly on the Japanese judiciary. The Women's Convention has been invoked by parties in a number of cases, but so far has never been positively quoted by the courts. On the other hand, the jurisprudence of individual complaints under the Optional Protocol of the Women's Convention (CEDAW-OP)has developed significantly. This paper introduces the case law of the individual complaint procedure of the Women's Convention, and identifies its significance in comparison with Japanese jurisprudence. As the jurisprudence of individual complaints under the Women'sCEDAW Convention is still in the law-making stage, the author encourages the Japanese government to ratify the Optional Protocol so that it can participate in the process of developing this jurisprudence.

Keywords : Gender Equality, CEDAW, The Women's Convention, UN Women, Optional Protocol, Individual Complaint, CEDAW-OP, Japan

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