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    The Future of Society – National Ambitions and Strategies

    21. Oktober 2021

    Dietmar HARHOFF (Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition)
    Ulrike SCHAEDE (University of California San Diego)
    moderated by Franz WALDENBERGER (DIJ)

    A video recording of this event is available on the DIJ YouTube channel

    Abstracts and speakers

    Yuko Harayama

    How to use “Society 5.0”?

    The digital transformation (DX) is underway nationally and globally, impacting our way of working, living, thinking and even feeling. Japan has introduced in 2016 the concept of Society 5.0 as a guiding principle for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy, to better shape the future society while capturing the full potential of DX. In my presentation, after introducing the concept of Society 5.0, I will explain how it has been deployed in the Japanese policy arena, and the interest it aroused outside Japan.

    Yuko Harayama is an Executive Director principally charged with international affairs at RIKEN. Prior to joining RIKEN, she spent five years at the Cabinet Office of Japan as an Executive Member of the Council for Council for Science, Technology and Innovation, two years at the OECD as the Deputy Director of the Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation, and ten years at the Graduate School of Engineering of Tohoku University as a Professor of Management Science and Technology. She holds a Ph.D. in education sciences and a economics, both from the University of Geneva.

    Dietmar Harhoff

    Reconsidering German National Strategies towards Digitalization

    The digital transformation of Germany has been off to a slow start, both in the public and the private sector. The presentation will focus on three aspects of the Federal government’s response to the challenges of digitalization since 2010 – the strategic plan named “Industrie 4.0”, the government’s national AI strategy (“Nationale KI-Strategie”) and the initiatives to accelerate the digitalization of the public sector. I will discuss assumptions in the government plans that are common to these initiatives as well as patterns of success and failure and comment on the state of play in all three of them.

    Dietmar Harhoff is a Director at the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition. Between 1998 and 2013 he was Full Professor of Management at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) München where he headed the Institute for Innovation Research, Technology Management and Entrepreneurship (INNO-tec). Between 1991 and 1998, he served as Researcher and Associate Director of the Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung (ZEW). His research interests focus on innovation economics, entrepreneurship and intellectual property. Dietmar Harhoff has advised policy-makers in various functions, e.g., as the Chair and Member of the Expert Commission for Research and Innovation (EFI) from 2007 to 2019 and as a member of the Council of Scientific Advisors at the German Federal Ministry for Economics and Energy (BMWi). He is an elected member of the German Academy of Engineering (acatech), the German Academy of Science (Leopoldina) and the Bavarian Academy of Science.

    Ulrike Schaede

    National Differences in Preparing for the Digital Disruption: Markets v. Industrial Policy

    Germany, Japan and the U.S. are preparing for the looming digital transformation (DX) in fundamentally different ways. Whereas Japan is employing the moment to relaunch industrial policy, the U.S. is leaving teaching, reskilling and industry investments mostly to the market. U.S. government demand, which has always been a beacon and financier for private R&D in future technologies, continues, and research funding programs are large. But the majority of activity to prepare for the impending tectonic shifts is in the hands of companies and universities, curriculum redesign, reskilling, and industrial upgrading are mostly based on private initiative. Germany positions in-between, with significant funding for deep-technology innovation and a new appetite for innovation and industrial policy.

    Ulrike Schaede is Professor, Japanese Business, at the University of California San Diego. She is also the Director of JFIT (the Japan Forum for Innovation and Technology) at UCSD’s School of Global Policy and Strategy. Her 2020 book The Business Reinvention of Japan won the 37thMasayoshi Ohira Memorial Prize, as well as the 2021 Axiom Business Book Award (silver medal, economy). She is currently working on a manuscript titled The Digital Transformation and Japan’s Political Economy, as well as newly emerging patterns of financialization in Japan.

    This event is part of the MWS Web Forum Series on The Digital Transformation.

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