JICA Ogata Research Institute

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[Live Video Streaming] Seminar "The Learning Enterprise for Quality Growth: Revisiting Kaizen Approach"

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February 27, 2020, 15:00 - 18:00


International Conference Hall, JICA Ichigaya Building, 2nd Floor
10-5 Ichigayahonmuracho, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan[Map Link]


Productivity and quality are critical to success in international markets, and in particular, to entering global value chains. Yet, despite a growing body of research on managerial capital, we still do not fully understand how to improve productivity and quality in the private and public sector in developing countries.

Kaizen, a widely adopted practice developed in Japan to improve productivity and quality, may give the answer to this question. The forthcoming book titled “Workers, Managers, Productivity: Kaizen in Developing Countries” presents a collection of essays on efforts to introduce Kaizen to developing countries.

The case studies gave multiple examples of Kaizen’s role in promoting learning. Innovation is essential for an economy to grow, and recent literature suggests that Kaizen tools are innovation inputs, enabling firms to take innovative actions, experiment, adopt new technology and achieve innovation.

Workers are critical to the success of Kaizen. Kaizen makes them active participants in solving problems and pushes managers at all levels to listen to their suggestions for productivity and quality improvements. In that sense it contributes not only to better business performance; it may help to reduce inequality through improvements of workers living standards.


Introduction of the event and the authors of the book

Opening remarks by Prof. Izumi Ohno, Director of JICA-RI

"Workers, managers, productivity: Kaizen in developing countries"
Overview of the book
Dr. John Page, Brookings Institution

Comments by discussants
Prof. SATO-Kan, IDE-JETRO and GDN Board member
Mr. Tatsuya Kajikawa, Director, Global Consulting Division, ChuSanRen

Short Q&A session with floor

- Coffee break -

Open discussion with the authors: “Kaizen as catalyzer for quality growth”
-How does Kaizen enhance firm capabilities?
-How does Kaizen contribute to the participation of local firms in global value chain?
-How can Kaizen be further disseminated in developing countries?

Moderator: Izumi Ohno
Editors: Akio Hosono, John Page, Go Shimada
Authors: Charles Godfred Ackah, Toru Homma, Keiji Ishigame, Kimiaki Jin, Keiji Katai, Vu Hoang Nam, Filipe Lage de Sousa, Momoko Suzuki, Mili-Ann M. Tamayao

Wrap up and closing remarks
Prof. Akio Hosono, Senior Research Advisor of JICA-RI


JICA Research Institute


English and Japanese (with simultaneous interpretation)






This seminar will be recorded and photos taken may be used for the website, social media, and other print publications. If you choose to participate in a discussion, you are presumed to consent to the use of your comments in these recordings.


JICA Research Institute (Mr. Jin)



This event has ended.

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