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Catalysing Disruptive Shifts For Innovation And Sustainability In Urban Environments: The Case Of Japan

Summary report written by Supriya Sen, Director from We Mean Business Coalition

3 June 2024 -  My recent participation at SusHiTech 2024, an annual fintech and Sustainability-focused urban innovation conference, unveiled a remarkable Japan steering what many believe will be its decade. The conference, hosted by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, served as a platform to gather perspectives from global leaders interested in Japan. It offered a new lens to tackle global challenges set in an urban context by harnessing revolutionary new technologies—an approach that has the potential to shape the future of urban innovation worldwide.

 Japan's 'lost decades' and periods of economic stagnation, particularly from 1991 to 2001, have had a lasting impact on its growth. The country is on a precipice with a rapidly aging population and a steep birth rate decline. In response, the public sector has launched a slew of new initiatives to stimulate foreign investment, enhance global connectivity, and empower local entrepreneurs, with the aim of forging a more prosperous and sustainable urban future.  

This article delves into our discussions at the conference and explores how Japan is harnessing the potential of financial innovation and entrepreneurship to foster a sustainable urban environment. This approach holds promise for Japan's future, instilling a sense of optimism about the country's ability to overcome its challenges.

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