Families in Austria and Japan


A Symposium with lectures about family structures and social benefit schemes by Japanese and Austrian scholars and intensive discussion of the topic:

In particular the conference is focused on the analysis of the relationship between state, families and marriage, the position of families in the world of work, the economic implications of family and domestic tasks on national accounts plus related models of assessment, as well as the regulation of family-related issues by criminal law.

The main fields of interest are in this context:

- Regarding the relationship between state, families and marriage it will be discussed how far family life shall be determined by the state and if there is a federal responsibility to deal with family issues. Furthermore the lectures involve questions about the constitutional basis of family related matters. Concerning the Japanese point of view the attention will be especially drawn to the significance and relevance of the “house” as well as the implementation of protection measures for the legal institute of marriage in Japan after the Second World War. In the Austrian report the discussion is focused on an analysis of the constitutional background (federal constitution, ECHR, land constitutions), the historical development of the relationship between state and marriage (in particular questions about civil marriage and the Austrian Marriage Act) and an outlook on planned reforms in this matter.

- Concerning families in the world of work it is not only intended to present the existing legal norms but indeed to analyse and assess them with regard to their ability of improving the reconciliation of work and family life in our societies.

- Main aim of the lecture family and domestic tasks in the context of national accounts is to deal with assessment of family tasks from an economic perspective. Which models are existing for such an evaluation, are they able to represent reality or do such models tend to produce false conclusions? If yes, do we have any adequate alternatives? How can family and domestic tasks be integrated in national accounts? What are the current approaches and are they good ones?

- In respect of families and criminal law the issue of protection of families and marriage by criminal law will be covered by two lectures. Based on the general demonstration of criminal rules in this matter the discussion will be primarily focused on the definition of the term family (in the context of criminal law) and secondly on the position of states towards family-internal relationships.