JP EN

Board Members

  BACK
Noboru (Nobu) Konno
President
Noboru (Nobu) Konno
President
Experience: Mr Konno also serves as President of KIRO, Inc. (Knowledge Innovation Research Organization), as well as holding the positions of professor at Tama Graduate School, Kyoto Institute of Technology and at Keio University. He also serves as advisor to Nikken Sekkei, one of the world’s leading and most innovative architectural bureaus.

Innovation management:A pioneer knowledge ecologist, he has been involved in numerous consulting projects, ranging from knowledge management and design strategy projects, change management for design organizations to workplace development.

He also serves on the jury of the Good Design Award (Japan’s most prominent design award). His books include: 'Intellectualizing Capability', awarded the Financial Times Global Best Business Book Award; 'Design Thinking For Business'; 'The Principles of Knowledge Creation Management'; and 'Purpose Engineering'.
Hiro Nishiguchi
Executive Managing Director
Hiro Nishiguchi
Executive Managing Director
Experience: Prior to co-founding JIN, Mr Nishiguchi served as Executive Managing Director of Innovation Network Corporation of Japan (INCJ), Japan’s largest public-private investment fund with $20 billion investment capacity to foster innovation within Japanese corporations. Mr Nishiguchi also serves as external director of Temp Holdings as well as President of the Japan Bosai Platform.

Innovation management:Closely involved with selecting projects for innovation finance at INCJ, Mr Nishiguchi also helped create new business as a Worldwide Partner and Region Head of Global M&A Consulting at Mercer. In this capacity he has worked with many global players on major international M&A transactions to foster cross-national synergies. His major publications are 'Successful M&A Organization and People Integration Strategy' and the 'Practical guide for HR Due Diligence'.

Mr Nishiguchi has extensive international experience. He received his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and has lived and worked in Chicago and Washington D.C. from 1992 to 2001.
Kunitake Ando
Executive Director
Kunitake Ando
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Ando is a Sony Corporation veteran, joining in 1969 and being put in charge of its management during its heyday as a worldwide innovation leader. He eventually was appointed President and COO of Sony Corporation in 2000. In 2005, he became Chairman of Sony Financial Holdings Inc. as well as of Sony Life Insurance. Since 2011 he has been holding the post of Honorary Chairman of Sony Life Insurance.

Innovation management:Mr Ando was instrumental in successfully diversifying Sony’s business, establishing the Sony Prudential Life Insurance Co., Ltd. (now known as Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd.), and becoming its Deputy President. From 1996 onwards he was furthermore instrumental in developing the “VAIO” business. Mr Ando also has extensive overseas experience, having served as President of Sony Engineering and Manufacturing of America in the 1990s.
Ikujiro Nonaka
Executive Director
Ikujiro Nonaka
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Nonaka is a Professor Emeritus of the Graduate School of International Corporate Strategy at Hitotsubashi University as well as Xerox Distinguished Faculty Scholar of the University of California, Berkeley, from which he also received his Ph.D.

Innovation management:Mr Nonaka’s main research interest is organizational knowledge creation, researching knowledge creating processes in companies around the world. He has also been conducting research on the characteristics of strategic and of innovative activities in Japanese companies.

Selected publications include The Essence of Innovation; The Knowledge-Creating Company; and The Wise Leader in the Harvard Business Review.
Among many accolades, Mr Nonaka was awarded the Purple Ribbon Medal by the Japanese government as well as being chosen as one of the most influential business thinkers by the Wall Street Journal.
Hitoshi Funahashi
Executive Director
Hitoshi Funahashi
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Funahashi began his career at a large Japanese trading house developing products for overseas sales before joining Recruit Corporation in 1987, where he worked on human resource issues before being put in charge of the new business development office.

Innovation management:
In 1996, Mr Funahashi successfully led the creation of a business incubation division in Recruit. He also launched the magazine Entre and started to provide venture companies with comprehensive support services. In 2000, he was put in charge of Recruit’s business support services project and established Actcell Corporation. In 2001, Actcell went into partnership with ICAB, a Swedish intellectual capital rating company, and obtained the license for the highly innovative IC Rating® approach for evaluating substantive corporate value that is not clearly listed on balance sheets, and successfully developed a Japanese version of this rating method.

Mr Funahashi also serves as a member of the subcommittee on Management and Intellectual Assets at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Fujiyo Ishiguro
Executive Director
Fujiyo Ishiguro
Executive Director
Experience: After working at Brother Industries, Ltd. and Swarovski Japan, Ms Ishiguro founded a high-tech specialty consulting firm in Silicon Valley and advised clients such as Yahoo!, Netscape, Panasonic, and Sony on U.S.-Japan alliances and technology transfers. She devises comprehensive digital marketing solutions for corporate clients that resolve fundamental business issues. The company was listed on the Mothers section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in 2008.

Innovation management:As one of only few highly successful women in Silicon Valley’s tech entrepreneurship scene, Ms Ishiguro is a frequent commentator in the media, extensively lecturing and writing about business and marketing strategies. Her regular columns include Smart Times on Nikkei Business Daily and Capture Business Innovation Tips on ITmedia Executive. She also serves as an advisory board member at ad:tech Tokyo.

She has been a member of METI’s New Industrial Structure Committee. Ms Ishiguro is also the winner of the “Entrepreneur of the Year Japan, 2008” (growth category). For “Woman of the Year, 2009” she was 1st in the Leader category and 1st runner-up for the Grand Prize.
Yukio Okubo
Executive Director
Yukio Okubo
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Okubo joined Recruit Co., Ltd. (current Recruit Holdings Co.,Ltd.) in 1983, assuming the post of Corporate Professional Officer of Recruit in 2011. In 2012, he was appointed as a member of the Japan Association of Human Resource Services Industry. He specializes in HRM, labour policy and career theory.

Innovation management:Mr Okubo has been closely involved in diversifying Recruit’s business, launching the Recruit Works Institute in 1999, assuming the post of General Manager. In 2010, he was appointed as Advisor to the Cabinet Office of the Government of Japan.
TOM KELLEY
Executive Director
TOM KELLEY
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Kelley is a Partner at IDEO. He also holds the position of an Executive Fellow at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley and holds a similar role at the University of Tokyo.

Innovation management:Tom Kelley is the best-selling author of The Art of Innovation and The Ten Faces of Innovation as well as a partner at the renowned design and innovation consultancy IDEO. As a leading innovation speaker, he addresses scores of business audiences on how to foster a culture of innovation and tap into the creative potential of their organizations. Over the years, he has spoken in more than thirty countries and helped IDEO grow from 15 designers to a staff of more than 600, while leading diverse areas such as business development, marketing, human resources, and operations.
Minoru Noda
Executive Director
Minoru Noda
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Noda is Professor at Meiji University’s Graduate School of Global Business and special-appointment Research Advisor at Recruit Holdings’ Works Institute, where he in charge of New Business. Prior to his appointment, Mr Noda served as Executive Manager of Nomura Research Institute’s consulting department.

Innovation management:Mr Noda is the founder of J. Feel, Inc., a consulting company focusing on organizational management. He also served as its President until 2010. Mr Noda specializes in organizational and strategic management. His focus is on individual behaviours and decision-making in a wide range of organisations, from small groups to large corporations.

Having authored numerous books on people motivation and organisational design for talent management, he regularly appears on major TV programs, including as a commentator on Broadcaster (TBS), as news commentator on Zoom In Super (Nippon Television), and as anchor on Keizai Wide Vision e (NHK General) and 7PM (BS Japan).
Hideyuki Horii
Executive Director
Hideyuki Horii
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Horii is a Professor at the Graduate School of Civil Engineering at Tokyo University. He also serves at the Chair of the Centre for Knowledge Structuring at Tokyo University.

Innovation management:Mr Horii led the establishment of i.school within Tokyo University and served as its executive director. i. school focuses on fostering innovative thinking and creative disruption by human-centred innovation and leadership cultivation. Mr Horii has also been invited to speak on Ted talk about his approach to innovation thinking.
Takashi Maeno
Executive Director
Takashi Maeno
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Maeno is the Dean of the Graduate School of System Design and Management at Keio University. Prior to his appointment at Keio University, he has worked for Canon, Inc., in Tokyo.

Innovation management:Mr Maeno’s research is at the forefront of highly innovative and new knowledge-creating areas of systems design education, human-machine interfaces, as well as human cognition.
Takeshi Matsumoto
Executive Director
Takeshi Matsumoto
Executive Director
Experience: Mr Matsumoto is the senior manager of the open innovation department at Osaka Gas Co., Ltd. He also holds the post of Professor in the Graduate School of Osaka University as well as in the engineering department of the Osaka Institute of Technology.

Innovation management:At Osaka Gas, Mr Matsumoto has been involved in numerous projects on new business creation. He was part of the team developing a freeze-crushing machine, as well as being involved in the research and development of a thin film type gas sensor. As leader of research planning in its Institute of Technology, he was also engaged in starting up of several projects such as on fuel cells or on the production and storage of hydrogen energy.
Mr Matsumoto also led the establishment of a ‘Management of Technology’ (MOT) school at Osaka Gas to promote technology education and innovation.
Masaru Murai
Auditor
Masaru Murai
Auditor
Experience: Mr Murai is the Executive Advisor of TX Entrepreneur Partners (TEP). Prior to this, Mr Murai has been appointed to many high-profile positions, including chairman of the Foreign Information Industry Forum, Governor of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan, and a special adviser to General Atlantic Partners, a global venture support company. He also served as a General Manager at IBM Japan and as President and Chairman of the Board of Compaq Computer Japan.

Innovation management:Mr Murai started his career at IBM Japan, where he was engaged in developing Japan’s first online banking terminal and system. Currently, as Executive Advisor of TEP, his main objective is to help entrepreneurs transform patents and innovations into viable business.