AboutWhat is ICF?
Initiative for Co-creating the Future
～Innovating the Platinum Society～
The Initiative for Co-creating the Future uses open innovation to co-create solutions, implement them in the real world, and produce collective impact toward resolving societal issues
Throughout the 20th century, humanity has enjoyed prosperity and longevity thanks to the benefits of industrialization and economic growth. However, in the 21st century, many countries have experienced a shift from economic growth to market saturation as well as the onset of societal issues such as global warming, decreasing birthrate, and aging population.
Other countries are faced with the challenge of achieving growth and prosperity while simultaneously tackling widespread poverty and unrestrained population growth.
The COVID-19 Pandemic has swept the world, shaking the foundations of social and economic systems.
However, such societal and economical shock was imminent nonetheless as a consequence of the excessive economic growth and globalization. Humanity has been overwhelmed with the challenge of sustaining the global environment while improving quality of life. These challenges can be overcome through innovation and the combining of breakthroughs from technology to business models.
The Initiative for Co-creating the Future (ICF) has been established to tackle the world’s most pressing challenges through open innovation. The ICF has launched through a merger of the Platinum Society Research Association and the Innovation Network for Co-Creating the Future (INCF). The Platinum Society Research Association has for the past ten years advocated Japan’s role as a leading country in resolving societal issues. The Innovation Network for Co-Creating the Future (INCF) has for the past four years endeavored to resolve societal issues through innovative technologies and new businesses.
- Purpose To co-create solutions, implement them in the real world, and produce collective impact toward resolving societal issues through open innovation.
- Vision The creation of an ecosystem centered on a network through which all stakeholders work in unison toward a common goal.
- Mission To contribute to the revitalization of regional communities and industry, especially through the incubation and success of start-ups, by encouraging members to pool their knowledge, technology, information, and resources for mutual improvement.
The year 2023 marks the third anniversary of the Initiative for Co-Creating the Future (ICF).
ICF is featured with the diversity of its members' participation, which allows for a multifaceted analysis of societal issues and simultaneously bringing out many solutions.
We are gradually, yet surely, seeing ICF’s philosophy becoming widespread as we discuss with our members the structure and root causes of our societal issues while exploring avenues towards their resolution.
However, when it comes to developing concrete solutions for societal issues and generating social impact through business implementation, we are still on the way to fully realizing our goals. Throughout the world, resolutions of societal issues usually take two steps forward and one step back. In some cases, the number of emerging problems might even surpass the number of resolved ones.
Fortunately, technological innovation is progressing rapidly, and the range of problems that can be resolved is also steadily expanding. ICF aims to resolve societal issues through promoting business and innovation, and we believe it is indispensable to incorporate innovative technologies and involvement of many of the most important stakeholders, including start-up companies. We will continue to improve our activities based on the experience and knowledge we have cultivated together with every partner. Let us look forward to it!
Chief of Staff, Secretariat for ICF (Initiative for Co-creating the Future), Mitsubishi Research Institute, Inc.
The ICF’s activities center around the identification of societal issues, the crafting of solutions, and the real-world implementation of such change. Our activities cover a wide-range of fields: wellness, water and food, energy and environment, mobility, disaster prevention and infrastructure, and education and human resource development.
Identifying Societal Issues
Research on Societal Issues:
The ICF website showcases the findings of research on societal issues conducted by MRI. All are welcome to refer to the reports in research and discussions on projects to resolve societal issues.
Business Acceleration Program (BAP):
The BAP collects ideas for resolving societal issues with business from startups world-wide. The program aims to foster co-creation activities among startups, ICF members, and MRI.
Future Co-Creation Project (FCP):
The FCP offers participants a stage to explore business ideas, design business models, and craft policy recommendations under a common societal issue.
MRI Working Groups:
Through its various research divisions, MRI hosts a variety of working groups featuring close collaboration with ICF members.
Business Expansion & Societal Implementation
When policy is a viable means to resolve societal issues, the ICF publishes recommendations based on the results of the initiative’s activities.
Business ideas are tested for their feasibility in proposed technologies and business models via collaboration among members and participations in national and local government projects.
A general assembly is held every April to present management policies, report on activities, and introduce new members.
Experts are regularly invited for lectures.
Stakeholders can enjoy multiple opportunities to network, from events with fellow members and partner organizations, to opportunities to build new relationships with startups.
The Latest from ICF:
The latest news on the ICF’s activities can be found on the official website with columns featuring specific case studies on resolving societal issues.