tl;ndr No, Japanese doesn’t have determiners.
Since it is requested that “credible and/or official” sources be named in the answer, I would recommend taking a look at Bernard Bloch:
1970. Bernard Bloch on Japanese. 1970. R.A. Miller (ed.). New Haven/London: Yale University Press.
Bloch had many lucid things to say about Japanese, and I doubt he assumed determiners in Japanese. Unfortunately, I cannot verify that with page numbers because I’m on a sabbatical with no access to his work. For those who read German, I suggest taking a look at Jens Rickmeyer:
1995. Japanische Morphosyntax. Heidelberg: Julius Groos Verlag.
Rickmeyer bases his account of Japanese morphosyntax in large part on Bloch. Rickmeyer rejects determiners, and calls the words in question adnominals.
Finally, I don’t believe that a discussion of functional categories in GB/MP can meaningfully contribute to an answer - even though I share their conclusion, but for other reasons.
In this answer I want to base my answer on common ground, on assumptions that most of us can share without compromising any personal or professional tenets. I think there is enough common ground enabling a conclusion if we ponder the next three observations. I will also work from the premise that demonstratives are not by default determiners. Else, Japanese would have determiners because it has demonstratives.
The first and second observations are concerned with the tasks we usually attribute to determiners, namely specification and the expression of genus. The third observation concerns the syntactic behavior of kono et.al., some of which have already been mentioned in other posts.
The first observation concerns one function of determiners, namely specification. Specification is gradient, ranging from unspecified (Engl. a) to specified (Engl. _the). But kono et.al. only specify objects with respect to proximity and distance referring to speaker and/or addressee. This is clearly different from the kind of specification that accompany determiners in Germanic and Romance languages. In fact the latter kind of specification is expressed in Japanese by the absence or presence of the topic marker -wa. Image you are about to read a short-story. The first sentence may be either (a) or (b):
a. Otoko-GA matikado-ni tat-te i-ta.
A man was standing at the corner.
b. Otoko-WA matikado-ni tat-te i-ta.
THE man was standing at the corner.
(a) is more appropriate because at the beginning of the story no context is available. Everything is new information, hence unspecified. (b), on the other hand, creates the impression that a context already exists, even though you may not have been aware of it.
But this distinction is not expressed by words like the English determiners, but rather by the (non-)appearance of -wa. The use of kono et.al. in (a-b) would be totally meaningless. Since specification in Japan uses an entirely different mechanism than determiners, one may ask why Japanese should have two mechanisms of specification.
A partial conclusion is the words kono et.al. lack the expression of specification usually ascribed to determiners.
A second observation concerns an additional function of determiners in, e.g. Germanic and Romance languages, namely the expression of grammatical genus. English, which has expression of genus on in its pronouns, is a stand-alone; its other Germanic family members clearly distinguish genus, and their determiners are their forms of expressions.
Determiners, as we know them, have two tasks: they mark a degree of specification, and they mark genus. (They also mark number, but this function does not apply to Japanese at all, so I dispense with it.)
Our (eurocentric) perspective on genus may be biased if we tend to associate “genus” with natural sexes. That is not how many other languages express their genera. “Genus” is simply a way of carving up a world full of objects, and assigning these objects a meaningful place in a system of subclasses. Grammatical genus is such a cognitively transparent matter that we can immediately understand the Kiswahili genus system of persons, natural objects, groups, artifacts, etc.
In Japanese, genus is expressed by classifiers, such as
-hon [elongated object]
-mai [flat object]
-hiki [small animal]
-too [big animal]
to name but a few. These suffixes express genus, which in Germanic and Romance languages is the task of determiners. Again one may ask why Japanese should have a class of determiners, if they neither contribute in specification, nor in the expression of genus.
A partial conclusion is the words kono et.al. lack the expression of genus usually ascribed to determiners.
The final observation has partially been made in previous answers:
a. kono et.al. appear in word-order positions within the NP that are not associated with determiners.
haha-ga kat-te kure-ta KONO zubon
THESE trousers mother bought me
b. kono et.al. can precede and depend on a pronoun/pronominal noun.
c. kono et.al. can occur together with a pronoun/pronominal noun.
kare-no KONO kuruma
his THIS car
d. kono et.al. also behave differently in noun ellipsis than determiners.
e. kono et.al. never appear with the same regularity as the Germanic and Romance determiners. The former are optional, the latter are obligatory (I gloss over the count/mass noun distinction).
That makes it unlikely that kono et.al. are determiners as we usually understand them.
If we compile the partial conclusions from these observations, namely:
- kono et.al. lack the expression of specification usually ascribed to determiners.
- kono et.al. lack the expression of genus usually ascribed to determiners.
- kono et.al. lack the regularity, the obligatory occurrence, and the word order specifics usually ascribed to determiners. They also behave differently in noun ellipsis.
As a conclusion, I believe, we would have to at least accept that no compelling evidence is available for the assumption that Japanese kono et.al. are determiners, as we usually understand them. Rather, the lack of the expression of specification and genus, and the lack of parallels in syntactic behavior with determiners in other languages, suggest that kono et.al. are best described as adnominals.
The answer to the question then is: No, Japanese does not have determiners.