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To discover the type of action necessary to encourage "sharp" human resources to exercise their full potential in Japanese society MITOU KAIGI 2017 to be Held

On March 10 (Fri.), 2017, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), Information-technology Promotion Agency, Japan (IPA), and Mitou Foundation will jointly hold MITOU KAIGI 2017, a conference in the field of IT human resource development and startups. That date was chosen because “3.10” can also be pronounced “mitou” (which means undiscovered territory i.e. MITOU day) in Japanese.

The conference will bring together six pioneering MITOU Program alumni entrepreneurs with rich backgrounds, including Mr. Ken Suzuki of Smart News Inc. and Mr. Yoshinori Fukushima of Gunosy Inc. With Mr. Takeshi Natsuno, the chief project manager of the MITOU program, acting as moderator, participants will have full discussions on issues concerning the potential impact that MITOU IT human resources, i.e., alumni of the program, will have on society.

1. Outline

IPA has been working on the MITOU program (official title: Exploratory IT Human Resources Project) for 17 years since FY2000, and fostered about 1,650 talented people called “MITOU IT human resources”, i.e., alumni of the program. MITOU IT human resources have made contributions in many fields and 252 of them have started their own businesses or commercialized their own inventions.

The MITOU KAIGI conference is an event aimed at further deepening and developing the Exploratory IT Human Resources Project in which Japan discovers and fosters human resources with outstanding IT ability. Against the backdrop of the growing demand for innovation in IoT-based business models in all industrial fields, METI recognizes the importance of raising public awareness of the broad range of fields which have been influenced by MITOU IT human resources and additional potential for innovation that the MITOU Program represents, and to this end, began holding the conference on March 10 or MITOU day in 2016, in order to attract public attention to these issues.

At MITOU KAIGI 2017, MITOU IT human resources, who are utilizing their rich experience from completing the MITOU program to actively improve industry, will participate in group discussions concerning current the type of action that Japan should take to encourage MITOU IT and other “sharp” human resources to exercise their full potential in Japanese society. Through these discussions, participants will share their perceptions of the current situation and challenges therein and provide recommendations to industry.

2. Date and venue

Date and time:
March 10, 2017 (Fri.) from 15:30 to 22:00
act* square (restaurant opposite Yebisu Garden Place)

3. Program (tentative)

1) Symposium: MITOU KAIGI conference (15:30-18:00)

  • Opening remarks, opening declaration, remarks by a guest of honor
  • Panel discussion with a moderator and MITOU IT human resources
    • Mr. Yu Ukai, Microsoft Development Japan
    • Mr. Ken Suzuki, President, Smart News Inc.
    • Mr. Yoshinori Fukushima, CEO, Gunosy Inc.
    • Mr. Tatsuya Honda, Fujitsu Ltd.
    • Ms. Kyoko Yonezawa, ispace Inc.
    • Mr. Yonetsuji Taizan, Preferred Networks Inc.
    • Moderator: Mr. Takeshi Natsuno, Chief Project Manager of the MITOU program
  • Closing remarks

Note: This program may change without notice.

2) Networking event: MITOU Night (paid admission) (19:00–22:00)

Following the symposium, a networking event (social gathering) will be held for MITOU IT human resources, MITOU Program supporters and support associations, companies proceeding with the utilization of IT human resources, and other relevant entities.

  • Short presentations by MITOU IT human resources (including demonstrations of their work)
  • Exhibitions of work by MITOU IT human resources, etc.

Release date

March 3, 2017

Division in Charge

Information Service Industry Division, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau

Related website

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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