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Precise Surveys and Scientific Management

Precise Surveys and Scientific Management

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During the initial period of Japanese era in Taiwan, Japan attempted to establish colonial laws and regulations based on the existing customs in Taiwan in order to minimize disputes due to differences in customs and language. To achieve this, the Office of the Governor-General launched a series of investigations into the existing customs on the island, for the reference of the judges. In 1901 (Year 34 of the Meiji regime), the “Provisional Taiwan Old Customs Investigation Committee” was officially formed, which applied literature reviews, investigations and interviews with senior tribal members to examine local land transaction practices, as well as business and lifestyle habits. In addition, the “Qing Administrative Law”, “Taiwan Private Law” and “Report on Investigations into the Customs of Aboriginal Peoples” were completed. In addition to investigating existing customs, the Office of the Governor-General also conducted thorough investigations into the various industries and land taxes in Taiwan, in order to gather statistics that were then used to manage Taiwan in a more scientific manner.

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