News & Highlights

  • JANUARY 2023

The Global Classroom: Student Immersion in Japan

As part of the elective curriculum within the MBA program, students have the opportunity in their second year to enroll in an Immersive Field Course – or “IFC.” The Japan IFC was started in 2012 and led by Professor Hiro Takeuchi as a response to the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011. The program has evolved as the reconstruction has progressed. The team-based consulting project location shifted to Tokyo in 2018, and the theme is “Innovation through the Fusion of Digital and Analog.” However, the group still had the opportunity to visit the Tohoku region that suffered from the disaster for a weekend. This year, Professor Hiro Takeuchi and Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell from the School’s Strategy Unit led 45 students to Japan for 10 days. During their stay in Japan, students were involved in three types of activities: 1) team-based consulting projects for companies in Tokyo; 2) group activities to learn about and contribute to the disaster-affected areas in the Tohoku region; and 3) immersive experiences in traditional and modern Japanese culture. This was the 10th year Professor Takeuchi taught the Japan IFC and his last MBA class he taught. Also, the last day of the course was Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell’s birthday. The students did a lovely celebration for Hiro and Ramon at the closing dinner.
  • AUGUST 2022
  • Case Centennial

In-person MBA Information Session in Tokyo

The Japan Research Center organized an in-person MBA Information Session in Tokyo for the first time in three years. The session was designed for prospective applicants to learn more about the MBA program curriculum, admission process, financial aid, and life at HBS. Several alums in Japan joined as panelists, and they shared their experience at HBS and how it has impacted their lives. The participants enjoyed meeting local alums in person.
  • JULY 2022

Interactive Lecture with Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell: Strategy: Creating and Sustaining Competitive Advantage

This July, Executive Education hosted a hybrid interactive lecture session by Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell in Japan with support from the JRC. Ramon Casadesus-Masanell led a successful interactive session on creating and sustaining competitive advantage for prospects, past Executive Education program participants, and MBA alums from the Asia Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, and European regions. The hybrid event took place simultaneously in-person in Tokyo and live online via Zoom. 175 people joined via Zoom, and 71 people joined in person. Participants came from Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, China, and the US. There was a lot of excitement and great feedback from participants who felt inspired by the event.
  • June 2022

Case Centennial Webinar: The Case Method in Japan

This June in collaboration NUCB Business School in Nagoya, Japan, the JRC held a webinar to celebrate the HBS Case Centennial. The webinar began with Professor Shinichi Takeuchi of NUCB Business School discussing the history of the case method, including how it started and how it has been developed globally. In the second part, Nobuo Sato, Executive Director of JRC, shared highlights of the case creation process. After that, Professor Hiroyuki Kurimoto, Chancellor of Nagoya University of Commerce & Business (NUCB), and Nobuo Sato discussed successful examples of case method and its introduction at NUCB Business School under the leadership of President Kurimoto. Professor Shinichi Takeuchi moderated the fourth part of the event which featured a panel of professors from across Japan: Professor Koji Mori, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Professor Michiko Shinoda, Nihon Fukushi University, Professor Yukari Takehana, Tokyo Gakugei University, and Mr. Tomohiro Tanno, President of Jikeikai. They shared how they have been making use of the case method in their field. More than 300 people joined the session.

New Research on the Region

  • 2023
  • Book

Deeply Responsible Business: A Global History of Values-Driven Leadership

Corporate social responsibility has entered the mainstream, but what does it take to run a successful purpose-driven business? This book examines leaders who put values alongside profits to showcase the challenges and upside of deeply responsible business. Should business leaders play a role in solving society’s problems? For decades, CEOs have been told that their only responsibility is to the bottom line. But consensus is growing that companies―and their leaders―must engage with their social, political, and environmental contexts. Jones distinguishes deep responsibility, which can deliver radical social and ecological responses, from corporate social responsibility, which is often little more than window dressing. Deeply Responsible Business provides a historical perspective on the social responsibility of business, going back to the Quaker capitalism of George Cadbury and the worker solidarity of Edward Filene and carrying us through to impact investing and the B-corps. Jones profiles exemplary business leaders from around the world who combined profits with social purpose to confront inequality, inner-city blight, and ecological degradation, while navigating restrictive laws and authoritarian regimes. The business leaders profiled in this book were motivated by bedrock values and sometimes driven by faith. They chose to operate in socially productive fields, interacted with humility with stakeholders, and felt a duty to support their communities. While far from perfect, each one showed that profit and purpose could be reconciled. Many of their businesses were wildly successful―though financial success was not their only metric of achievement. As many companies seek to coopt more ethically sensitized consumers, Jones gives us a new perspective to tackle tough questions and envisions a future in which companies and entrepreneurs can play a key role in healing our communities and protecting the natural world.

  • November 15, 2022
  • Article
  • Harvard Business Review Digital Articles

What Really Makes Toyota’s Production System Resilient

Toyota has fared better than many of its competitors in riding out the supply chain disruptions of recent years. But focusing on how Toyota had stockpiled semiconductors and the problems of other manufacturers, some observers jumped to the conclusion that the era of the vaunted Toyota Production System (TPS) was over. Not the case, say Toyota executives. TPS is alive and well and is a key reason Toyota has outperformed rivals. Much of this has to do with how it partners with its suppliers.

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Tokyo Staff

Nobuo Sato
Executive Director
Akiko Kanno
Assistant Director
Akiko Saito
Senior Researcher
Yukari Takizawa
Office Manager