Preface to the English Edition

THE TOYOTA PRODUCTION system, under the name of a kanban or a just-in-time system, has become the topic of much conversation in many workplaces and offices. It has been studied and introduced into workplaces regardless of industrial type, scale, and even national boundaries. And, indeed, this is a happy occurrence.

The Toyota production system evolved out of need. Certain restrictions in the marketplace required the production of small quantities of many varieties under conditions of low demand, a fate the Japanese automobile industry had faced in the postwar period. These restrictions served as a touchstone to ...

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