ICAS Event: Healthy Healthcare Lecture Series 16 - "Creative Responses to Aging Societies: The Japanese Experience"

Friday, October 22, 2010
7:00 p.m. (Talk will start at 7:30 p.m.)
TUJ Azabu Hall 206/207 (Access)
Hiroyuki Murata
Rene Duignan
Free. Open to general public.
RSVP is now closed


Japan is the most rapidly aging country in the world and is on “The Frontier of Challenges” in aging societies. These challenges are creating a severe “crisis” for Japanese society but it often that “crisis” is the mother of creative response. Participants will learn how Japanese companies created innovative solutions such as Curves, Brain Age, and Raku-Raku Phone and changed the crisis into business opportunities.

About the Speaker

Hiroyuki Murata is the Professor of Tohoku University and CEO of Murata Inc. In 1999, Murata established the Smart Senior Consortium assembling 35 leading US and Japanese companies around the vision of “Smart Senior Society.” Among his noteworthy accomplishments, Murata introduced Curves, the world’s largest fitness chain for women, to Japan and helped it to become one of the largest fitness chains in Japan. Murata contributed the development of NTT DoCoMo’s Raku-Raku phone, the world’s best-selling senior-friendly mobile phone. He is also responsible for creating the first college-linked retirement community in Japan, located in Kobe in collaboration with Kansai University, and he contributed to establishing a “College-linked Learning Program” for seniors in collaboration with Chiba University and Kashiwa City. Other recent clients include Toyota Motor, Dentsu, AXA Financial Life Insurance, JTB, Tokyo Electric Power, Panasonic, and Mitsui Fudosan.

From 1992 to 2002, Murata created 13 multidisciplinary consortia with over 494 companies to incubate emerging businesses in various fields. Murata serves as Professor at Smart Ageing International Research Center (SAIRC) at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan. Headed by Dr. Ryuta Kawashima, SAIRC is a “3-Inter” (Interdisciplinary, International, and Intergenerational) institute based on research in brain imaging, aging mechanisms, and human development. Murata also serves as a Visiting Professor at Kansai University and is a Fellow of The World Demographic & Ageing Forum (Switzerland). Murata sensei is the author of several books, including The Business of Aging: 10 Successful Strategies for a Diverse Market, Seven Paradigm Shifts in Thinking about the Business of Aging, and Retirement Moratorium: What Will the Not-Retired Boomers Change?He is also a frequent commentator to many leading media, including Nikkei, Yomiuri, Asahi, Mainichi, Japan Industry News, Newsweek Japan, Financial Times, International Herald Tribune, New York Times, Dow Jones, Silver Industry News, TV Tokyo and NHK. Murata holds a Master’s degree of Engineering from Tohoku University Graduate School of Engineering, and a MBA from Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (one of France's Grandes Ecoles) in Paris. Murata speaks fluent English, French, and Japanese.

About the Moderator

Dr. Rene Duignan works for the Central Bank of Italy monitoring Asian economies. He also lectures at Aoyama Gakuin University and is an Adjunct Research Fellow at ICAS Temple University, Japan Campus. He was formerly a Global Liaison for the Health Policy Institute Japan where he developed a strong interest in Japanese healthcare. He serves as an elected Board Member of the Ireland Japan Chamber of Commerce (IJCC). As Chair of the JIC Study Group, he hosts a wide variety of public lectures. He is an occasional TV commentator on Japanese economic and political affairs and a Tokyo resident since 1997. Dr. Duignan is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, University College Dublin and Aoyama Gakuin University, where he was a recipient of the Japanese Government Monbukagakusho research scholarship.

About ICAS
The Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS) is an organization dedicated to fostering study and research on various topics related to contemporary Japan and Asia.

E-mail Notification of Future Events
If you'd like to be notified of our upcoming ICAS events, please contact us at icas@tuj.temple.edu.