"University x Technology x BOP" – Innovations that will change the world from Japan!

I’m currently starting to write, what will hopefully be, an inspiring speech for my keynote at the MIT D-Lab Japan event this Saturday.  I think this event would be a great kick-off opportunity for “Japan, Inc.” to work effectively with universities to create globally relavent technologies and products.

From the D-Lab program:
Capacity building in developing countries is one of the enormous challenges we face this century. Despite the prosperity of developed nations like the US, Japan, and European countries, we cannot ignore the fact that 1.6 billions people still do not have access to safe drinking water, and most of them live on less than $1 per day. The fight against poverty and hunger is the challenge for the entire global citizen — the impoverished will suffer the most if effective policies and plans are not put in place.

Technology has a great power to dramatically help poverty alleviation, and university can play a major role in creating new technologies. Especially, cost-effective and user-centered technologies (also known as appropriate technologies) can provide affordable and reliable tools for capacity building in many areas. The projects on appropriate technologies are beneficial in many ways; the programs help the poor, but also help to improve the design process and education programs in developed countries through hands-on experience, real-world experience, and human-centered designs.

This one day workshop will introduce some of the leading projects in Japan on international development and appropriate technologies. You will also learn the projects at one of the leading universities in the US, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). José Gómez-Márquez and Ken Endo from MIT D-Lab will introduce their projects on improving the quality of life of low-income households through the creation and implementation of low cost technologies.
Plenary Speech – Kiyoshi Kurokawa (GRIPS)
Location: National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS)
Registration site is here

William Saito
Special Advisor at Cabinet Office (Govt. of Japan)
Named by Nikkei as one of the “100 Most Influential People for Japan,” Saito began software programming in elementary school and started his own company while still in high school and was named Entrepreneur of the Year in 1998 (by Ernst & Young, NASDAQ and USA Today). As one of the world’s leading authorities on cybersecurity.

After selling his business to Microsoft, he moved to Tokyo in 2005 and founded InTecur, a venture capital firm. In 2011, he served as the Chief Technology Officer of the National Diet’s (Parliament) Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission. Later that year, he was named as both a Young Global Leader and Global Agenda Council member for World Economic Forum (WEF) and subsequently been named to its Foundation Board. In 2012, Saito was appointed to a council on national strategy and policy that reported directly to the Prime Minister of Japan.

Saito also advises several national governments around the globe. In Japan, he has served as an advisor to Japanese ministries; the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science; the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST); the Information Technology Promotion Agency (IPAS); the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, among others. He is currently the Special Advisor to the Ministry of Economic Trade and Industry (METI) and the Cabinet Office for the Government of Japan.

He went to medical school at UCLA and Harvard Kennedy School; serves on various boards of Global 2000 companies; frequently appears as a commentator on TV and is the author of seven books in addition to writing several weekly newspaper columns. His management book, The Team: Solving the Biggest Problem in Japan, was published by Nikkei BP and became a best-seller in 2012. In 2016, Saito received the Medal of Honor from the Government of Japan for his work in the field of education.

Posted by whsaito

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