The aim of this study was to investigate what are some possible and likely solutions in the current and future labour shortage in Japan. The three possible solutions were examined and evaluated. These were: increasing Japanese women’s workforce participation; accepting more foreign workers; developing automation. The document analyses of a range of secondary sources were conducted. Overall, these three solutions may certainly ease the labour shortage in Japan. None of them, however, are perfect solutions by themselves because the feasibility of them varies between business sectors. Moreover, socio-cultural aspects have had enormous influences on these solutions. Cultural barriers, the ideology of traditional gender roles and cultural homogeneity, are too strong for the first and second solutions respectively (i.e. Japanese women and foreign workers) to bring successful outcomes to the labour shortage. By contrast, there are more limited cultural barriers constraining the third solution (i.e. automation) from easing the labour shortage and rather, cultural aspects may facilitate it.