Japanese SMEs and Entrepreneurs
tackling with social issues
– Women are making new value –
社会課題に挑む日本の中小企業 〜女性経営者・社員がもたらす多様性の価値~
Program date _2022/2/28~3/4
Lecturer  /   [Prof. Kiyoshi HORI] ,Vice-President for Academic Affairs and Admission & College of Arts and Sciences
Number of participants  /  14
University  /  Rotterdam Business School/ Netherlands, University of Eastern Finland/ Finland
Major  /  International Business, Accounting, Taxation, Marketing, Leadership, Commerce

Against the backdrop of aging society and declining birthrate, there are concerns about the decline in Japan’s national power. In this program, we will focus on “5. Gender Equality” and “8. Job Satisfaction and Economic Growth” of the SDGs, and collaborate with small and medium-sized companies in Japan that aim to create new value by utilizing the diversity of their human resources. Students from the Netherlands and Finland will be invited to work with Japanese students to explore models in which an environment in which diverse human resources can work leads to the growth of companies and countries.

It is said that Japan is an advanced country in terms of issues. In particular, the aging of society and the declining birthrate are serious issues that directly lead to a decrease in human resources and a shrinking market. In this program, we will pay particular attention to SDG 5, “Gender Equality,” and SDG 8, “Job Satisfaction and Economic Growth,” and work with small and medium-sized companies in Japan where women are strongly involved in value creation. This is because we believe that the future of Japan depends on SMEs, which account for 99% of the total number of domestic companies and 65% of the total number of employees, promoting behavioral change with an eye to social issues. We will invite as guest lecture from industriy where artisans, once thought to be male-dominated, are playing an active role, companies that use women’s unique sensibilities to propose aesthetically pleasing products while reducing environmental impact, and companies that make things, one of Japan’s strengths. In addition, we will invite as guest lecturers a labor and social security corporation run by a female labor and social security attorney with the motto “Innovation in the way companies work and the environment in which children are raised” and a person in charge of promoting a project to support female entrepreneurs at a consulting firm. We will design a multifaceted learning program on gender equality, job satisfaction, and the creation of opportunities for economic growth, including legal systems and financial support.

The program will be led by a professor specializing in the study of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), who will maximize the value of the program through overall coordination and liaison with companies. Participants are planned to be invited from partner business schools in the Netherlands and Finland. Students from J.F. Oberlin University will also be invited to participate in the program, creating an environment where students from Japan, the Netherlands, and Finland can learn from each other. It is hoped that the participating students will apply what they have learned in this program to social issues closer to home.




Voice of participants