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First Selection of Applicants for the J-Innovation Hub Initiative

April 10, 2020

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) conducted a first selection of applicants for the J-Innovation Hub Initiative. Nine successful hubs were selected as a result of strict examination.

METI will deploy support measures tailored to selected bases in parallel with advancing dialogues with them. Through these approaches, METI will also take on efforts for creating innovations by these bases.

1. Overview of the J-Innovation Hub Initiative

In this initiative, METI targets regional open-innovation hubs, mainly universities, and assesses and selects outstanding bases playing a leading role as a hub of companies’ networks, and, thereby, it will aim to: enhance the trust of selected hubs in society, concentrate support measures to them, enhance the potential of top-ranking innovation hubs and encourage such bases to cooperate and compete with one another.

METI selected applicants for two categories: the international development category and the regional contribution category.

The international development category: proactively engaging in industry-academia-government collaboration activities with global enterprises at home and abroad; and aiming toward further business development overseas in the future.

The regional contribution category: aiming to solve regional challenges, vitalize regional economies and take on other actions; and proactively engaging in industry-academia-government collaboration activities with regional companies and municipalities.

2. Outline of selection processes

METI opened a call for applicants from February 3 to March 6, 2020, and received 17 applications.

In response, it conducted an examination of the applications from the viewpoints below and decided on successful applicants as a result of discussions held by an examination committee of outside experts.

Major viewpoints of the examination

3. First selection of applicants for the J-Innovation Hub Initiative Hubs

International development category

Tohoku University Center for Innovative Integrated Electronic Systems
Yamagata University Innovation Center for Organic Electronics
Kanazawa Institute of Technology Innovative Composite Center
Kyoto University Bio-Nanomaterials Joint Research Base
Osaka University Laboratory of Flexible and Power Three Dimensional System Integration
Osaka University Research Center for Nuclear Physics, Osaka University

Regional contribution category

University of Fukui Headquarters for Innovative Society-Academia Cooperation
Kyoto University of Advanced Science Kyoto University of Advanced Science
Tokushima University Laboratory of Bio Innovations

4. Future actions

METI will advance dialogues with each of the selected hubs and will provide them with tailor-made support measures, including budgets and relaxation of regulations.

METI has prepared the following support menu, for example, so far although it may change the details of support measures according to the selected hubs.

  1. Supporting selected hubs in deploying PR activities at home and abroad and advancing collaboration among such hubs (allowing them to make use of the official logo, holding meetings for networking among such hubs, supporting them in developing businesses overseas, etc.); and

  2. Enhancing collaboration between such hubs and two projects conducted under the METI budgets:
    A. Project for supporting regional companies in creating innovations; and
    B. Project for supporting companies in strategically sophisticating their base technologies (“Sapoin Project”)

Official logo

Division in Charge

Industry-University Collaboration Office, Industrial Science and Technology Policy and Environment Bureau