Professor Shinobu MAJIMA


Professor Shinobu MAJIMA

Western Economic History, Business History, History of Consumer Culture , History of Economic Thoughts, with an emphasis on modern British history.


DPhil in Economic and Social History, University of Oxford, U.K. (2006).
B.A. in Economics, Keio University, Japan (1998).

[Employment History]
Professor, Faculty of Economics, Gakushuin University, Japan (September 2007-Present).
Full-Time Researcher, Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change (CRESC), University of Manchester, U.K. (2005).




Research Fields

Western Economic History, Business History, History of Consumer Culture , History of Economic Thoughts, with an emphasis on modern British history.


  • 'Financing Japan's World War II Occupation of Southeast Asia', Journal of Economic History, vol. 73, no. 4 (December 2013).
  • 'The Japanese Occupation of World War II Southeast Asia' with Gregg Huff, South East Asia Research, vol. 19, no. 3 (2011).
  • 'Fashion Muses and International Cultural Networks during the Interwar Period', Gakushuin Review of Economics, vol. 48, no. 1 (2011) in Japanese.
  • 'The Road to Affluent Society: An Analysis of 1953-54 Household Expenditure Enquiry Data', Gakushuin Economics and Management Review, vol. 23 (2009) in Japanese.
  • Fashion and the Mass Consumer Society in Britain: An Economic History, Vdm Verlag (2009).
  • 'Have there been Culture Shifts in Britain?: A critical encounter with Ronald Inglehart', Cultural Sociology, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 293-315 (November 2007) co-authored by Mike Savage.
  • 'From Haute Couture to High Street: the role of shows and fairs in twentieth-century fashion', Textile History, vol. 39, no. 3 (May 2008).
  • 'Affluence and the Dynamics of Spending in Britain, 1961-2004', Contemporary British History, special issue on affluence edited by Shinobu Majima and Mike Savage, vol. 22 no. 3 (November 2008).
  • 'Elite Consumption in Britain, 1961-2004: results of a preliminary investigation' in Sociological Review, Special Edition (2008), co-authored by Alan Warde.
  • 'Fashion and frequency of purchase: Womenswear consumption in Britain, 1961-2001', Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, vol. 12, no. 4, (September 2008).
  • 'Work-Life Balance and Taste Formation: fashion consumption patterns in The UK and Japan (Japanese title: Josei shuro to shiko keisei)', Gakushuin Economic Review, vol. 44, no. 3 (October 2007).
  • 'Introduction: Rethinking Qualitative and Quantitative Methods', Cultural Sociology vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 203-216 (July 2009).

Professional Affiliations

  • Japan Fashion Association Funded Research 'Fashion and Consumption Cycles in Japan, the US and the UK: an analysis of the present and the last quarter century', Japan Fashion Association (Tokyo), 2004.
  • Committee Member, British NCDS/BCS Cohort Panel Surveys, Survey User Consulting Committee, 2006-2008.
  • Research Associate, Centre for Research on Socio-cultural Change, University of Manchester, UK.
  • Japan Socio-economic History Society, Business History Society, Economic History Society, Social History Society,Association for Business Historians, European Business History Association


Are you a snob, or are you easily swayed by others? Are you interested in trends?

American economist Harvey Leibenstein proposed the bandwagon and snob effect in forming consumer demand to explain trend phenomena. The bandwagon effect is a phenomenon where consumer demand increases in proportion to increased consumption by others. On the other hand, the snob effect is a phenomenon where consumer demand decreases in proportion to increased consumption by others. He posits that trends are formed from the desire to identify with the consumption behavior of others.

In other words, the act of bandwagoning is a situation where the expectations of however many people will purchase a "certain product" and the actual purchasing act unfolds in a spiral, and the first few consumers who begin to purchase that "certain product" are the snobs. In snob behavior, the desire to differentiate becomes stronger in relation to an increase in consumers for a product, thus moving on to new products and styles.

So which behavior do you tend to take? During your time as a student, please cultivate your ability to discern your own behavior without being carried away by the opinions of others. In order to do so, it is important to learn from the wisdom and lessons of past generations. By looking at things from a historical viewpoint, let's find the "reality" that does not fade even with the passage of time.

to pagetop