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Max Schorr from GOOD magazine couldn’t help squeezing in one more meeting during our recent program on Design and Sustainability in Tokyo. He’s interested in space and how organizations use it to bring communities together. Fortunately for us, Masaaki Ikeda, the founder, was able to show us around the remarkable space that is Eco Plaza.

Mariko, Masaaki Ikeda, Max Schorr and Casey Caplowe (L to R)

Mariko, Masaaki Ikeda, Max Schorr and Casey Caplowe (L to R)

Inside EcoPlaza

Inside Eco Plaza

Sitting on a Naoto Fukasawa designed bench

Sitting on a Naoto Fukasawa designed bench

"more trees" benches are made from sustainability grown trees

"more trees" benches are made from sustainability grown trees

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We created a Twitter account. Follow us if you wish….Twittering both in English and Japanese.

innovators_js

innovators_js

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bills-book

I just found out that the Japanese translation of Bill Strickland‘s book Make the Impossible Possible was published in Japan from Eiji Press. I AM THRILLED! It is a wonderful book about Bill’s life story in which he explains how he ended up creating a job-training and arts organization in Pittsburgh for the underserved community. The book was translated by Hiroki Komazaki, also a member of our network, who started an organization in Tokyo to help working parents with sick children. I hope Bill’s book will be widely read not only by aspiring social entrepreneurs but also by young people in Japan.

We first met Bill in June 2006, when we held a retreat at SY Partner‘s office. Then we decided to invite him to a retreat in Tokyo in January 2007. It was his first trip to Japan. Last February, he gave a speech at Japan Society. Here is a link to a summary of the event.

Congratulations!

(Fumiko)

©Satoru Ishikawa

©Satoru Ishikawa

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I started to read Seth Godin’s new book Tribes last night. I have never read his book before. Tribes is easy to read, yet at the same time, is empowering and inspiring. I read about 30 pages of the book in my 40-minute subway ride. Then I checked his blog once I arrived at work this morning and found out that he was “offering an apprenticeship/not-internship/graduate school/charm school track-changing opportunity to a few people this winter. It’s free, it’s fairly audacious and I hope you’ll check it out. It might not be for you (in fact, it probably isn’t) but I have no doubt that you know people who might be interested.” Here is the link for further details.

I like the idea of apprenticeship. Seth Godin has a monk head. I thought about a book called The Priest and his disciples by Hyakuzo Kurata. I read it when I was in high school back in Japan. While I do not recall too much about what was written in the book, I like the notion that the guru of marketing is going to hand-pick his willing disciples to sit down and share his wisdom with them. And it is great that he is doing it for free. Try to quantify what may transpire in the six months that you spend with him. Too bad all applicants are required to speak perfect English…………..(How do you define “perfect”?)

(Fumiko)

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We recently added videos to our Innovators Network’s channel on YouTube.

Please check it out!

The interviews were all filmed during and after a retreat that we held in Kyoto in November 2007.

Here is the link to our channel.

InnovatorsNetwork

ユーチューブのコンテンツを更新しました。

2007年11月に京都で開かれた会合の参加者の皆様に

イノベーターズ・ネットワークについて伺いました。

下記のリンクをどうぞご覧になってください。

InnovatorsNetwork

(内容は英語です。日本語のインタビューは英語字幕付きです。)

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Project Row Houses’ sister organization Row House Community Development Corporation (Row House CDC), formed in August 2003, now receives 5% of referral fees for all purchases made through the Amazon.com Associates Program. All contributions are tax deductible as allowed by law. Row House CDC is based in Houston’s historic Third Ward, and envisions uniting mixed-income housing, green space, public facilities, artists’ living/studio spaces and historic preservation.

To support Row House CDC, please visit http://www.rowhousecdc.org/.

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May 20, 2008 – The U.S.-Japan Innovators Network held the public symposium Innovation & the Art of Future Building in New York on May 20 in order to explore innovative approaches to helping people envision a better future, whether it’s a community coping with natural disaster, an individual rebounding from homelessness or online networks sharing information vital to recovery. Part of Japan Society’s U.S.-Japan Innovators Network, the program was co-organized with MCG Jazz, Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans and The Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership. A second presentation took place Thursday, May 22, at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans, LA.

For a summary of the event, please read Innovation & the Art of Future Building.

To listen to the participants’ different perspectives on recovery and future building, please visit Innovators Podcasts on Japan Society’s website.

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