It was around the same time that the Japanese government during the Meiji period (18681911) developed an extensive programme of settler expansion into Hokkaidō, as Katsuya Hirano reveals in his chapter. Japan had previously attempted to assert its control over the indigenous Ainu, but it was not until the last decades of the nineteenth century that traditional Ainu ways of life no longer became sustainable in the face of invasion. Settler colonialism, designed with American experiences in mind, would irreversibly transform the economy and society of Hokkaidō, Hirano explains.