Sustainable Tourism in Japan: Beyond Numbers


Tourism in Japan is growing faster than anywhere else in the world. The number of international visitors to Japan has more than tripled since the start of the decade, hitting 31 million last year. And the numbers are expected to continue rising as the country hosts two of the world's largest events - the 2019 Rugby World Cup and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

While this unprecedented growth undoubtedly brings economic benefits, there are concerns around unintended social and environmental consequences; ranging from degradation of natural habitats to tensions with local residents and overcrowding of urban infrastructure.

The government has set targets to welcome 40 million visitors by 2020 and 60 million visitors by 2030. Is it possible to sustain this phenomenal growth while also ensuring the health of our natural environments and social systems? Can tourism really be "sustainable"? What challenges and opportunities lie on the road ahead for Japan as the tourism sector continues to boom?

Join us for a discussion around sustainable tourism and the future of Japan with a panel of industry pioneers and entrepreneurs on 26th July 2019!


18:30: Doors Open
19:00: Lightning talks by industry leaders
20:15: Breakout sessions / Discussions
21:00: Panel Discussion: Looking ahead to a Sustainable Tourism Model in Japan
21:30: End of official program / Networking
22:00: End

- Fumiko Kato: Founder & CEO, WAmazing
- Yu Aoki: Founder & CEO, MATCHA
- Tomotsugu Yamakawa: CEO, CORARE ARTISANS JAPAN Inc.
- Dennis Chia: Founder & CEO, BOUNDLESS

Nagatacho GRID
2 Chome-5-3 Hirakawacho, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 102-0093 (B1 Floor)


General Admission: 2500 JPY (including light networking drinks)*
*Tickets will NOT be available on the door. Please purchase your tickets in advance. Spaces are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.


Fumiko Kato - CEO & Founder, WAmazing
Fumiko Kato founder WAmazing, a start-up that provides a free network service for tourists coming to Japan in 2016. WAmazing distributes SIM cards to travelers free of charge and also runs an application with more than 80,000 downloads that can be used to make bookings and plan trips. She previously worked at Recruit Co. before working for Jalan Research Center, where she was the principal researcher of sightseeing.

Yu Aoki - CEO & Founder, Matcha Inc.
Yu Aoki is the founder of MATCHA Inc. a web-based guide for those visiting Japan in February 2014. Through collaboration with various companies, prefectures and municipalities, MATCHA delivers information overseas in 10 languages and to more than 200 countries. He has been a regional producer for “Cool Japan Strategy” of the Cabinet Office, Government of Japan, and prior to founding MATCHA, he worked for a digital agency company known as Augment5 Inc.

Tomotsugu Yamakawa - CEO, CORARE ARTISANS JAPAN Inc.
Tomo Yamakawa is an architect who is the Founder of Tomo Yamakawa Design and the CEO of CORARE ARTISANS JAPAN (Collaborate with Rare Artisans in Japan) that seeks to convey and pass on traditional techniques of craftsmen to the present day. Together with Satsuki Yamakawa, for the first project of CORARE, they set up BED&CRAFT, a site in Inami, Toyama, where tourists not only stay in a traditional Japanese houses, but can also get to know and learn from local craftsmen.

Dennis Chia - Founder & CEO, BOUNDLESS
Dennis Chia founded BOUNDLESS in 2017 with the aim of reevaluating the charms of rural Japan and finding solutions for the multitude of problems faced in rural Japan. He is currently building a new community of international students and working professionals to contribute to Japan’s revitalization movement. Through the Sosei Partners projects, BOUNDLESS organize learning programs and create an empowerment platform for the international community in Japan to contribute to Japan’s rural revitalization movement.

Key Takeaways
- Understand the basics of Sustainable Tourism and how it can be applied.
- Learn about what is happening in Sustainable Tourism in Japan and abroad.
- Hear experts share challenges, case studies and opportunities related to the tourism industry.
- Interact with a diverse group of people (entrepreneurs, corporate employees, students, nonprofits, etc.) with similar interests.

Target Audience
- Organisations and individuals wanting to understand the potential and implementation of Sustainable Tourism models.
- Corporates and startups looking to enhance the sustainability of their operations.
- Environmental NGOs, startups and businesses.
- Students, academics, researchers on issues related to sustainability/tourism.
- Government stakeholders (incl. embassies).

Primarily in English (No interpretation) 英語(通訳なし)
*There will be at least one Japanese-speaking breakout session.

Facebook Event Page - https://www.facebook.com/events/693076221121271/

ORGANISED BY: 一般社団法人Social Innovation Japan & Asia Pacific Initiative

About Social Innovation Japan
Social Innovation Japan is a community of problem-solvers, thinkers, and doers. We provide a platform for people to engage with and learn from industry leaders who are tackling social and environmental issues, and connect with like-minded people from different backgrounds. We aim to build Japan's largest and most diverse platform of change makers, connecting people with opportunities and resources to tackle real-world problems.

Please note that we will be taking photos at this event and we reserve the right to use these in our promotional materials. If you would prefer not to appear in photos/videos, please inform a Social Innovation Japan team member on the day. Social Innovation Japan, the organising team, volunteers and sponsors are not liable for any injuries, deaths, accidents, loss of property or damages incurred during any of our events.

  • The event description was updated. Diff#456282 2019-07-22 14:35:06
Fri Jul 26, 2019
7:00 PM - 9:30 PM JST
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General Admission (incl. networking drinks) SOLD OUT ¥2,500
Venue Address
2 Chome-5-3 Hirakawacho, Chiyoda City Japan
Social Innovation Japan