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Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien
Digital Transformation<br> – Discourses, Strategies and Processes

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    Digital Transformation
    – Discourses, Strategies and Processes

    Research focus since June 2019

    The digital transformation (DT) refers to the changes in society, politics, economy, culture and science driven by the rapid spread of information and communication technologies. With the exchange of ever-larger amounts of data as well as the exponential increase in the performance of computer hardware and software due to the expansion of digital infrastructures, DT is currently undergoing novel developments marked by new dynamics.

    The focus on Japan is relevant in two ways. First, as a highly developed industrial and technological nation, the country plays a role in the development and implementation of digital infrastructures and applications of international significance. The “Society 5.0” strategy propagated by the government in 2016 clearly expresses the expectations linked to DT and its associated claim to global leadership in this realm. Second, even if DT presents itself as a global trend, development strategies and adaptation processes have clearly recognizable national characteristics. This is due to different political systems, political-economic traditions, legal systems, economic structures, educational and scientific systems as well as social values. This applies in particular to Japan, whose economic and technology policy, industrial organization, management system, social structure and culture have long been the subject of Japan-specific and comparative studies.

    The focus offers a rich spectrum of questions from the social sciences and humanities regarding technology development and application, political support measures, government regulation and private sector strategies. Likewise, this research focus investigates questions regarding the changes in the economy, society, education, training and science that are associated with technology use, as well as regarding social discourses conducted in relation to DT. When going beyond Japan, both comparative and transnational research perspectives can also arise. In addition, the research focus includes projects from the digital humanities. Here, DT is not itself an object of research, but rather provides resources and methods for humanities research.

    Related Research Projects

    Conceptual history using digital methods

    Cyber-physical spaces and avatar technologies: new opportunities for an inclusive society?

    Japan’s Future Imaginaries of Extended Reality

    Start-ups in Asia – the role of agglomerations and international linkages

    Text, Image, Context and MMR: Observations and reflections regarding digitally augmented Cultural Sociology

    The Digital Transformation of Science

    The discourse on the digital transformation in Japan: an analysis based on the concept of data

    Thomas Mann’s reception in Japan between cultural heteronomy and emancipatory impulses

    Completed Projects

    ACCESS - Inclusion of senior citizens in a digitalizing world

    Aging in Japan: Domestic Healthcare Technologies in Place

    Humans and Devices in Medical Contexts in Japan (book project)

    Technical Innovation and Research Collaboration / Clusters: Biomedical Engineering in Japan

    The Future of the Financial System in the Digital Age

    Use of robotic systems in nursing care in Japan with a view to increasing demand for skilled workers