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The purpose of this paper is to analyze the personnel management of Japanese National Railways (JNR) during the wartime period and clarify the postwar implications of that policy. When the Sino-Japanese War broke out, JNR faced great instability of railroad labor and a concomitant attenuation of skills. In response, JNR reinforced its internal training system and adjusted the disposition of its limited human resources. Through the expansion of incentives including allowances, bonuses and fringe benefits, the decline of real wages was halted. Programs for the ideological reinforcement of laborers' spirit and lifestyle were implemented as well. However, as the war escalated to become the Pacific War, labor supply was further restricted, finally running short, and the quality of labor consequently deteriorated. As a countermeasure, JNR implemented administrative streamlining and established a personnel maintenance committee, focusing human resources allocation within the organization according to importance. Female workers and students were employed as a new source of labor. In particular, to compensate for a marked decline in living standards, chances of promotion were expanded. Railroad operational efficiency was achieved through this personnel management style and in 1943 JNR reached the highest level of productivity since its foundation. Nonetheless, in the face of a transportation crisis and with a mainland battle seeming imminent, JNR could not avoid conversion to a military organization. For this conversion, a new rank of Vice Associate Railroad Officer was established as a temporary measure and more than 100,000 personnel were promoted to this rank and the existing Associate Railroad Officer. At the same time, the lowest rank of employee was abolished. These wartime measures and the military organization of JNR were reformed during the radical postwar reorganization of Japanese National Railways under the Allied occupation of Japan.