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 ――『人口減少時代の土地問題――所有者不明化と相続、空き家、制度のゆくえ』が7月20日に発売されました。まず、吉原研究員が土地問題に注目し研究を始めたきっかけについて教えてください。

 吉原 まずこの研究は、東京財団が2009年から行った国土資源保全プロジェクトの研究成果が土台になっています。きっかけは、前年の夏、当時、主任研究員であった安田喜憲先生の問題提起でした。高齢化や過疎化にともない地域の土地の担い手が減るなか、日本の森林に海外からの投資家も関心をもっている、もし新しいかたちの森林売買が広がっていけば、地域の環境や地下水の保全にも影響が及ぶのではないか、そうした危機感が発端でした。

 研究の当初は、森林と地下水に着目していましたが、次第にこれは森林と地下水の間にある「土地」にこそ課題があることが見えてきて、徐々に土地制度の研究に焦点が移っていきました。続きを読む

Yoshiwara  absentee landlord means a person who owns land that does not live in the locality, whereas the word “owner unknown” is used by anyone when we started this project I think that it was not. Although it existed as a phenomenon, there was no name. I think that it is the first time that this project, with leader Hideki Hirano Senior Researcher, was named “Misrecognition of the country, death of the land”.

 There is no unified definition for the term owner unknown at the moment. We call the owner unknown “any owner’s location and life and death can not be known immediately in any ledger of the administration.” Owner unknown refers broadly to the phenomenon that the owner does not become unknown suddenly from a certain moment but information and memories become vague over time. So, I am referring to “owning” as “owner”.

 Recently, this term has become established as a policy term, and in administrative materials, mass communication etc, it is used as unknown owner land, land owner unknown problem.

Yoshiwara  absentee landlord means a person who owns land that does not live in the locality, whereas the word “owner unknown” is used by anyone when we started this project I think that it was not. Although it existed as a phenomenon, there was no name. I think that it is the first time that this project, with leader Hideki Hirano Senior Researcher, was named “Misrecognition of the country, death of the land”.

 There is no unified definition for the term owner unknown at the moment. We call the owner unknown “any owner’s location and life and death can not be known immediately in any ledger of the administration.” Owner unknown refers broadly to the phenomenon that the owner does not become unknown suddenly from a certain moment but information and memories become vague over time. So, I am referring to “owning” as “owner”.

 Recently, this term has become established as a policy term, and in administrative materials, mass communication etc, it is used as unknown owner land, land owner unknown problem.