Promoting Quality and Productivity Improvement/ Kaizen in Africa

  • #Books and Reports

JICA began implementing various Kaizen projects in Africa in 2006 (starting with Tunisia). It has recently started promoting the Africa Kaizen Initiative (AKI) in collaboration with the African Union Development Agency – the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) and the Pan-Africa Productivity Association (PAPA). When Japan supports Kaizen promotion in various countries, it is important to respect partner countries’ initiatives to adapt the original Japanese model to their indigenous models—just as Japan learned from the United States in the 1950s. Therefore, this volume addresses how development cooperation to promote Kaizen can effectively support the process of translative adaptation by partner countries and contribute to technology transfer to improve quality and productivity in Africa.

This volume comprises seven chapters:
(i) an overview of Japanese development cooperation for the promotion of Kaizen in Africa and the concept of translative adaptation
(ii) the Japanese and Singaporean experiences of introducing and promoting Kaizen through translative adaptations
(iii) insights into crucial success factors for quality and productivity improvement (QPI) based on the reviews of the implementation modalities of JICA-supported Kaizen projects in seven African countries
(iv) a comparative analysis of the implementation of JICA-supported Kaizen projects in Tunisia and Ethiopia
(v) an assessment of the practices and process instituted for the Africa Kaizen Award and the Africa Kaizen Annual Conference in light of their contribution to QPI in Africa
(vi) a theoretical review and insights into the new relationship between Kaizen and innovation with reference to the case of M-PESA in Kenya
(vii) the role of Kaizen activities in human development, with particular attention to non-cognitive/socio-behavioral skills in the era of digital transformation.

Jin Kimiaki, senior assistant director at JICA Ogata Research Institute, and Ohno Izumi, senior research advisor at JICA Ogata Research Institute, have edited this book to report some of the outcomes of the “Research Project on the Japanese Experience of Industrial Development and Development Cooperation: Analysis of Translative Adaptation Processes.” Ohno and Yamada Minoru, executive senior research fellow at JICA Ogata Research Institute, jointly lead the overall project. This book represents the second of a three-volume book series that compiles the intermediate findings of the research project.

Please click the links below for further details.

Jin Kimiaki, OHNO Izumi
Date of issuance
February 2022
Number of pages
294 page
Related areas
  • #Africa
  • #Japan's Development Cooperation
Research area
Development Cooperation Strategies
Research project