Dentsu and Discover Japan join hands on consultancy services for innovation rooted in the concepts of ancient Japan

Dentsu Inc announced today that Dentsu’s creative think tank “Dentsu Team B,” is joining hands with Discover Japan Inc. to establish the “Discover Japan Concept,” a consultancy service generating creative ideas to support innovation rooted in concepts from ancient Japan.

Discover Japan Concept sample. © Dentsu

During the past four years, through the Discover Japan magazine series, both companies Dentsu and the publisher have discovered and collected a varied range of traditional Japanese culture and craft methodologies passed down throughout history. Then the concepts have been as concepts able to contributing to modern innovations.

In July 2019, this archive of concepts ground the launch of the “Discover Japan Concept” an ideas consulting service supporting corporations and communities. This service aims to provide for the generation of universal ideas, able to transcend time being uniquely Japanese.

The consultancy aims to combining concepts from ancient Japan with new business and product planning as a new approach for innovations generated in Japan.

Joining design thinking, lean startups and renewed interest on Japanese history and culture

Amid a rising demand for innovation in all areas, a variety of new methodologies such as design thinking and lean startups proposed in Europe and the United States are now being introduced throughout many corporations.
In addition to these methodologies, there is a renewed importance on history, culture, and other “wisdom of the past.” The rise of inbound tourism to Japan is contributing to grow the interest in Japanese culture and traditions passed down from ancient times among dwellers and foreign people.

In Japan, HANKO (stamps) are one of the traditional information tools used since ancient times for public documents and personal verification. By combining HANKO with AR markers, Dentsu created HANKOHAN, which not only facilitates personal verification, but also includes other personal information (facial images, self-introductions, etc.). © Dentsu

All these facts are in the basement of the joint Dentsu-Discover Japan consultancy launched today bringing together de demand for innovation and Japanese ancient findings, along with creative way of thinking.

Just to put an example of the concepts included in the archive: In ceramics there is a concept associated with Karatsu-yaki pottery known as “80% potter, 20% user.” In other words, “80% of pottery is created by the potter and the remaining 20% is completed by the user.” This philosophy was practiced long before words such as “open innovation” and “co-creation” became widespread. As opposed to imported concepts, this distinctively specific and practical way of thinking originated in traditional Japanese crafts and is still practiced today.

Some information on the partners at the Discover Japan Concept

Dentsu Team B is comprised by a number of Dentsu employees who, in addition to their “A-sides” (day jobs), have individual “B-sides” that facilitate alternative approaches by proposing a Plan B–a way of doing things differently than in the past–with regard to various issues facing companies and organizations unable to be resolved directly using a “Plan A” approach. At present, the team is supporting more than 50 projects in a new 21st century process that breaks down barriers.

Discover Japan Concept logo

Discover Japan Inc. develops since 2008 the “Discover Japan” brand based on the concept of “rediscovering the charm of Japan”. The company promotes the refined charm of Japan through Japanese things, concepts, places, and people. Involved in numerous projects with the Japanese government and corporations. Independently established as “Discover Japan Inc.” in 2018, the company now plans to launch the “Discover Japan Lab” in fall 2019.

Image over the headline.- Yo! Sushi kaiten restaurant at Gatwick airport. Sushi, a Japanese traditional dish, is at the base of many new and innovative restaurant concepts all over the world, such as Yo! restaurants and kiosks. Photo © Gatwick Airport.

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