Since the 1980s, the term "Japanese management accounting" has attracted serious attention, not in the least because of Japanese companies' international competitiveness. However, the term is often used without defining its exact referent. What is Japanese management accounting? Where does it come from? Are there any defining characteristics that make it "Japanese," which enhance Japanese companies' international competitiveness? Is Japanese management accounting particularly socially and culturally determined, and therefore, rarely applicable in foreign companies? After examining the evolution of Japanese management accounting, from the mid-nineteenth century to the year 2000, this chapter addresses the aforementioned questions from historical perspectives.