About this Program

Message from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications

Message

The spectacular discoveries made in this 4th Industrial Revolution’s Telecommunication Technology (ICT) are transforming at a breakneck pace. Yet with the current global spread of COVID-19, our continued battle against this virus has brought us to avoid physical contact with one another. This virus has made itself known not only to our country, but to the entire world’s population, overturning our everyday lifestyles and pushing us to pursue the new normal. There has been no shortage of lost opportunities and sorrow. However, this new normal has in turn promoted diversification, and that no matter how small, every person in the world has the potential to awaken an industrial or social revolution. Now is precisely the time to think about the next big stride into the future. Calling conventional knowledge into question, breaking through existing barriers, and bringing about change to the industrial structure is essential. The realization of that change is Disruptive Innovation.

In order for disruptive innovation to develop and grow, we require a bedrock on top of which the seeds of inspiration, seen as "unusual" by customary standards, can naturally grow, an environment that accommodates challenges without fear of failure and an acceptance of diversity and the value it brings. This does not mean just pushing Japan's accomplishments into the world, but rather aiming for global development from the onset.

As globally recognized, there is a need to establish an environment in which candidates can feel free to challenge themselves in creating something out of nothing. Their ability to break beyond what AI can achieve and create a new 1 from a state of 0 will open up the future, rather than relying on pre-existing solutions.

In 2014, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (hereinafter referred to as “MIC”) established the “INNO-vation” Program to brew a new challenging atmosphere and provide support towards candidates (referred to as “strange or unusual”) that could bravely move forward with their wildly peculiar and ambitious ideas to resolve the technological issues facing us today.

As we all endeavor to adjust to this new normal, we are eagerly anticipating applications from new challengers. The MIC will also continue working to find the perfect structure to support world-class changes and fast-moving revolutions in the field of ICT. Together, not only can we challenge ourselves towards something new but also towards creating a better tomorrow for our world.

*ICT stands for Information and Communication Technology, as defined and used accordingly in Japanese terminology. *This program was launched in 2014 on the basis of the recommendations of a report from the Information and Communication Council entitled “The Desired Course of ICT Policies towards Innovation Creation” (interim report: 5 July 2013, final report: 27 June 2013). In the ensuing years, the program is positioned as a key national strategy. As a follow up to 2019’s growth strategy (approved on 21 June 2019) the program was included in the Declaration to be the World’s Most Advanced Digital Nation (approved on 14 June 2020).

Supervisors

Supervisor

Applications to the Disruptive Challenge will be assessed by 9 judges, each regarded as front-runners in their respective fields, e.g. ICT.

Gaku Ueda

Gaku Ueda

MODE, Inc., CEO

Erika Ogawa

Erika Ogawa

The Guinness World Records Japan Ltd., Co-Founder/Former President/Consultant

Tetsuya Kawanishi

Tetsuya Kawanishi

School of Fundamental Science and Engineering, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University
Professor, Department of Electronic and Physical Systems

Yoichi Sato

Yoichi Sato

TikTok Japan General Manager, ByteDance, ltd.

Katsuya Takasu

Katsuya Takasu

Director, Takasu Hospital

Tomotaka Takahashi

Tomotaka Takahashi

CEO, Robo Garage Co., Ltd.

Hiroshi Harada

Hiroshi Harada

Graduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University
Professor, Department of Communications and Computer Engineering

Tomoe Makino

Tomoe Makino

TripAdvisor LLC
Country Manager Japan

Yukihiro Matsumoto

Yukihiro Matsumoto

Ruby Association
Chairman

Program Advisors

Program Advisor

Five industry-leading innovators will work as INNO-vation Program consultants, inputting their expert advice on how to improve the Program overall.

Adam D’Angelo

Adam D’Angelo

Founder and CEO, Quora
Former Facebook CTO

Joichi Ito

Joichi Ito

Venture Capitalist

Shinichi Nakasuka

Shinichi Nakasuka

Department of Aeronautics & Astronautics School of Engineering, University of Tokyo
Professor, Intelligent Space Systems Laboratory

Hitoshi Hokamura

Hitoshi Hokamura

Scrum Ventures Partner
First Compass Group, General Partner
Former Chairman of Evernote Japan

Takashi Miike

Takashi Miike

Filmmaker

Ambassador

Ambassador

Working to further expand publicity to encourage participation from a wider variety of people.

Kosaka Daimaou

Kosaka Daimaou

Entertainer, Producer

Contact

KADOKAWA ASCII Research Laboratories, Inc., INNO-vation Executing Agency

By phone
Phone:+81 3-5840-7629 Hours: Monday to Friday (excluding holidays) 10am-6pm

Contact Form
Upon confirmation of your inquiry, the responsible party will contact you shortly.
Depending on the contents of the inquiry, it may take some time to respond.
Thank you in advance for your understanding.
Contact Form