News & Highlights

  • DECEMBER 2020
  • EVENTS

Virtual Case Discussion with Professor Tomomichi Amano

On December 2, the JRC hosted an online case discussion with Professor Tomomichi Amano for HBS alumni and friends in Japan and other parts of the world. Professor Amano led a discussion on the case, Othellonia: Growing a Mobile Game, which he co-authored with Professor Eva Ascarza and Professor Sunil Gupta. Over 40 people joined the session and enjoyed a lively discussion.
  • NOVEMBER 2020
  • EVENTS

Webinar with Professor Hirotaka Takeuchi: The Strategy of the Wise Company in a Post-Coronavirus World

Last November the JRC organized a webinar with Professor Hirotaka Takeuchi in collaboration with Academy Hills, introducing HBS to a broad audience in Japan. Professor Takeuchi discussed the strategy of the Wise Company in a post-Coronavirus world based on his new book, The Wise Company: How Companies Create Continuous Innovation. Nearly 300 people joined the session and enjoyed an energetic talk by Professor Takeuchi.
  • October 2020
  • EVENTS

24 Hours of Harvard

Worldwide Week at Harvard showcases the breadth of Harvard’s global engagement through academic and cultural events with global or international themes. On October 7th-8th, Harvard broadcasted 24 Hours of Harvard, which featured 24 consecutive hours of around-the-clock and around-the-world events and activities. The Japan Research Center contributed a program titled “Introduction of Japan through a Very Popular Course at HBS.” Nobuo Sato, Executive Director, introduced the activities of the JRC, and Hirotaka Takeuchi, Faculty Chair of the JRC and Professor of the popular course, Japan IFC, discussed the valuable lessons HBS students learn from the program; not only in culture or business but human experience.
  • December 2019 – June 2020
  • FACULTY

Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell in Tokyo

From December 2019 to June 2020, Professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell stayed in Tokyo under the HBS Global Research Fellowship , a fellowship for HBS faculty to pursue in-depth research or course development outside the United States. Professor Casadesus-Masanell was interested in companies with an innovative business model for writing cases and his new book. The Japan Research Center, Asia-Pacific Research Center and Harvard Center Shanghai worked closely with Professor Casadesus-Masanell to suggest companies and visited them on an exploration basis to lead to future research opportunities.

New Research on the Region

  • January 2021
  • Case

Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (A)

By: David J. Collis, Nobuo Sato and Akiko Kanno

This case follows Christophe Weber, President and CEO of Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited, a leading pharmaceutical company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, as Takeda considers acquiring Shire Plc, a biotech company based in Ireland. The acquisition would turn Takeda into a top ten global pharmaceutical company; however, other pharma companies were showing initial interest in acquiring Shire, and the acquisition would require a large amount of funding. Other concerns about the bid were nonfinancial. Over the last two decades, Takeda had aggressively pursued globalization and was now a global company with two thirds of revenue raised outside Japan and a diverse management team. What was the implication of acquiring Shire? Was now the right time to take such a big step? Was the acquisition in line with the company’s goals? How would the combined company be managed? Would the acquisition put an end to Takeda as a Japanese company?

  • January 2021
  • Teaching Material

Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (B)

By: David J. Collis, Nobuo Sato and Akiko Kanno

This case is a follow up to HBS Case No. 721-373, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (A). Following the events of the previous case, Takeda reached an agreement to acquire Ireland-based Shire Plc. The case follows some of the achievements and challenges Takeda and its employees face following the acquisition. It outlines the company's situation in 2019 and raises discussion about its future prospects.

  • December 2020
  • Case

Komatsu and Smart Construction

By: Rajiv Lal, David J. Collis and Akiko Saito

Komatsu, Japan's leading construction equipment manufacturer, is considering investing in a digital platform "Smart Construction" that will digitise the entire work process on a construction site, allowing for substantial reductions in cost and time while improving safety. The platform will combine data from drones, automated construction equipment, subcontractors etc on a single integrated online website. However, there are many impediments, both internal and external, to the adoption of "Smart Construction" and takeup of the initiative has been slower than hoped even in Japan. The case describes the origins and development of "Smart Construction" within Komatsu as well as the advantages to its useage, and a description of the construction industry in Japan and the possible causes of its slow adoption.

See more research

Tokyo Staff

Nobuo Sato
Executive Director
Akiko Kanno
Assistant Director
Akiko Saito
Senior Researcher
Yukari Takizawa
Office Manager