Forming an ecosystem of innovation in Asia
▼The entrepreneurial power that is currently needed
Entrepreneurs who boldly pursue solutions to the world’s problems are central to global innovation. They give rise to new economic activities, build new industries and are the source of new job creation.
The chance to learn and to exchange inspiration within a gathering of peers from around the world builds confidence for young entrepreneurs to overcome challenges to forge ahead with their businesses. It also provides the valuable opportunity to learn the global perspectives needed to develop their businesses beyond the boundaries of their own countries.
▼Bringing Asian-born innovation to the world
AEA works to attract young entrepreneurs who use ingenuity and technology to take on challenges from the high-growth Asia region. From large private companies to business incubators, AEA aims to form an ecosystem that brings industry, government and academia together as one to generate innovation in Asia.
To break out of an economic slump, we need entrepreneurs —the driving force of capitalism— who are determined to break through such stagnation and pursue “creative destruction.” This means that our biggest task is cultivating an enterprise culture to create entrepreneurship and new venture companies.
More than ever before, programs to promote entrepreneurial ventures and startups are now being implemented through industrial, academic and government collaboration in countries all over the world. Entrepreneurship has been positioned as crucial for innovation not only in the United States, but also in Europe and in Asian countries.
If Asia is to show the presence as a center of innovation for the world, we must find ways to attract young entrepreneurs not only from within individual countries but from Asia as a whole, which has been achieving remarkable growth, and inspire them to make the most of their know-how and technological expertise. And it is also important to establish human networks and create the place to foster venture companies, where research organization including the university, the private sector which can be a partner of the innovation, venture capitals, angel investors and mentors, not to mention entrepreneurs themselves, all of them convene in one place.
For young entrepreneurs, getting together with peers from around the world to learn from and inspire one another is a stimulating and valuable experience that can greatly boost self-confidence, a trait required to overcome the various difficulties involved in successfully operating a business. As a project designed to spur innovation through collaboration with numerous Asian countries under Japan’s leadership, the Asian Entrepreneurship Award is intended to help form an expansive network for developing entrepreneurial ventures that attract professionals including venture capitals not only from Asia but also worldwide. It is my hope that this award encourages collaboration between the public, private, and academic sectors to create an “ecosystem” that fosters and supports entrepreneurial ventures in Asia.
The Chairman of the Nominating Committee
Professor, General Manager – Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Division of University Corporate Relations, University of Tokyo