The course to 2050 is through the sea.
“A new maritime nation with a multipolar socio-economic system supported by local marine resources = Japan making a start towards a world without hunger and poverty” (WeON = Wealth of Ocean Nation), which is part of the Moonshot Millennia Program, is a project that aims to create a “new maritime nation / Japan”, taking the diverse marine resources of a changing climate in Japan as a starting point and through the connections of autonomous economic blocks of each region.
First, we will imagine the preferable society of 2050, and then clarify the technological and social challenges to be realized by 2030, in cooperation with various people.
The name “WeON” expresses our will to bring together individuals of different generations and expertises (We) and to sail (ON) towards the “moon” of the new maritime nation. The overlap of everyone's vision of a new maritime nation will guide the project, and our ship will move forward.
By bringing together the thoughts and knowledge of people from different generations and fields, we will create a promising vision of society in 2050 and thus, find a way to achieve it.
Please contact us if you have any comments, suggestions, support or questions about our project.
- What is a moonshot R&D system?
- The Government sets ambitious and engaging objectives (moonshot objectives) and drives challenging research and development on important social issues such as the super-aging society and global warming.
Our website is now open.
Building the future of Japan as “a new maritime nation” based on diversified maritime resources.
The sea breeze that brings the smell from the shore. The surface of the water quietly glistening in the twilight.
For us who live in Japan, the ocean holds as an important place in our lives. Close to us and indispensable; the ocean provides us with energy, food and many other things.
The marine organism, that lives in the abyss of the ocean is one of the sustainable resources, as long as we mindfully acknowledge the growing number of organism each year.
However, we humans are unable to determine the population of species that live in the ocean. The waves and the tides, which also have the potential to be a source of renewable energy, remain particularly difficult to control at the time.
Simultaneously, the declining birth rate and the aging of the Japanese population is the result of a large population decrease, which will fall below 100 million people by 2050.
Considering this situation as a whole, what actions should we take in order to make Japan a pleasant to live than before?
At WeON, we have so far relied on the richness of the ocean and its uncertainties to explore the sustainability of the production and the use of marine organisms.
Today, we focus on the food, energy, and economy of a preferable future in 2050, taking the diverse marine resources of a changing climate in Japan as a starting point .
With the help of science and technology we envision “a new maritime nation” of Japan by 2050 through the following 3points.
- The economy and population will become more multipolar, shifting from a unipolar concentration in cities to regional areas.
- The economic blocks in the inner regions, with agriculture and forestry at their core, will function as hubs connecting to the economic blocks of the coastal regions.
- The economic blocks of each region will be independent in terms of “food”, “energy” and “economy”, and the aggregation of all blocks will form the “new maritime nation” of Japan.
In order to realize this project aiming to lead Japan to a more prosperous nation, we set the goal to identify the technological and social problems that need to be solved by 2030.
Our goal beyond 2050 is to make Japan a model of a society free of hunger and poverty by utilizing ocean resources, and expand this condition to the world as a whole. Above all, this is a goal set by the international community with Goal 14 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): 'Protect the wealth of the oceans'.
Ten years have passed since the Tōhoku earthquake, and now we are facing the health crisis of covid-19, which still shows no sign of easing. However, we have this conviction that all the difficulties and hardships we have to overcome on our way, leads us to meet our destiny, and we must continue to search for the path that will lead us to a future in which wherever we are, in Japan or elsewhere in the world, we all look to the same moon. (we live under the same sky)
We believe that the new model of “maritime nation” will inspire empathy among people and serve as a compass guiding us to a world without hunger and poverty.
- Team LeaderGakushi Ishimura
Gaku Ishimura is a natural resource economist who received his undergraduate degree in marine chemistry from Hokkaido University. He pursued his master degree in marine affairs (fishery economics and management) at the University of Washington, USA and Ph.D. studies in resource management at the University of British Columbia, Canada.
Gaku joined the Iwate University faculty in 2015. His current research is focused on applying quantitative analysis as a tool for understanding how society utilizes natural resources and building a sustainable system for resource utilization.
- Sub LeaderMomoko Ichinokawa
Momoko Ichinokawa is the head of a group responsible for developing statistical and mathematical modelling methods for fisheries science (Applied Statistical Modeling Group) at Fisheries Resources Institute, Fiseries Research and Education Agency. Born in Tokyo, Japan. Doctoral degree in College of Arts and Science at Tokyo University (Ph.D). During her academic years, her experience as a volunteer in the research for sea turtles in the Ogasawara Islands motivated her to specialize in marine ecology. She has translated and published an educational book in Japanese, Overfishing: What Everyone Needs to Know, written by Ray Hilborn and Ulrike Hilborn.
- Tetsuya Akita
Tetsuya Akita is a scientist at Fisheries Resources Institute, Fiseries Research and Education Agency since 2015. He has developed several theories for applied genetics, evolutionary ecology, and wildlife management. He is currently developing technology for monitoring ecosystems using genomic information, especially in estimating a population number of freshwater/saltwater fishes from pedigree-based information. Graduated from Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology (B.Sc. and M.Sc.) and Yokohama National University (Ph.D). Postdoctoral Fellow at The Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI).
- Keita Abe
Keita Abe is a Postdoctoral Fellow at Norwegian School of Economics (NHH). He holds a B.A. from Kwansei Gakuin University and M.A. in economics at University of British Columbia, and received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Washington. He is specialised in natural resource economics, environmental economics, and applied econometrics. He has applied theoretical and empirical methods in economics to study fisher's behavior in the Sanriku fishery in Japan and the Alaska Pollock fishery in the U.S., the relationship between international trade and fishery resources, and the social impacts of individual quota management in the Norwegian fishing industry. In 2017, he received the Best Student Paper Award from North American Association of Fisheries Economists.
- Hokuto Ando
Hokuto Ando is a creative director and desinger of we+ inc. Born in 1982, Yamagata Prefecture. Left Musashino Art University and graduated from Central Saint Martins in London. Focusing on digging up and rebuilding value, he works across multiple fields ranging from concept development and strategic design to spatial / product / graphic direction and design. Co-founded we+ inc. in 2013. His design skills have earned him many awards, domestically and internationally. He is a part-time lecturer at Musashino Art University, teaching Spatial & Product Design including scenography design, interior design, installation design, and furniture design (2017-present) and has participated as a judge in iF Design Award (Hanover) and D&AD Awards (London).
- Kenta Iwasaki
Kenta Iwasaki is a 2020 Thiel Fellow, 1st Batch of Mozilla Builders, Founder & CTO of Hyperia, Former Founder & CTO of Perlin, and Former AI Research Lead in NAVER Clova. Having started programming since the age of 6, Kenta founded 6 startups, led and contributed to several open-source projects, freelanced as an AI/networking/distributed systems expert for several companies, and won 20+ competitions and hackathons under Binance, Google, Microsoft, IBM, Mozilla, Stanford University, US Department of State, General Electric, etc. His research is focused on signal processing, information theory, artificial intelligence, statistical sampling, distributed systems, blockchains, consensus protocols, and performance engineering. Over at Perlin, he raised over 60 million USD doing blockchain R&D for the International Chamber of Commerce, DBS, Trafigura, and Standard Chartered to enable them to scalably and securely perform tens of thousands of million-dollar blockchain transactions per second.
- Hajime Oshima
Hajime Oshima is the Executive Officer at RPI,inc(Regional Planning Institute). Born in Kanagawa Prefecture. M.A. in economics. Professional Engineer (Fisheries Engineering). While at university, he began working on research and plans for fishing villages and fishery industry. After working for Fishing Village Planning Institute、The Japanese Institute Infrastructure and Communities, he was assigned to his current position. He has been working on regional economic analysis and industrial development, especially in the field of fisheries and fishing village development.
- Nozomi Gomi
Nozomi Gomi is a planner at RPI,inc (Regional Planning Institute). Born in Tokyo, Japan. Graduated from Tokyo Institute of Technology (M.Eng). After working for a railway company in the hotel business and regional revitalization projects, she joined RPI,inc in 2020. After joining the company, she was in charge of the planning about fishing ports, and mountain villages.
- Yukihiro Sakaori
Yukihiro Sakaori is a Chairman of HYPERIA Corp. Born in Yokohama and grew up in California. After graduating from Keio University, he served as a trading manager for major oil and utility company in-charge of global energy distribution business for over 15 years. In 2016, he was involved in a digital innovation project at a French Utility where he researched and studied blockchain adoption into energy business and operations, led him to co-found HYPERIA with CTO Iwasaki
- Eri Sekiguchi
Eri Sekiguchi is a desinger and engineer of we+ inc. Born in 1992, Yokohama City. Graduated from Keio University's SFC (Shonan Fujisawa Campus) and completed her Master's degree in Graphic Media Design at London College of Communication. She is pursuing new expressions born from fusing the material's natural beauty and artificial technology. Mainly in-charge of projects like HERMÈS, Grand Seiko and ISSEY MIYAKE
- Rickie Takemura
Rickie Takemura is a freelance project manager and affliating professor at Iwate University, holding MBA, Bond University, Australia. Her vocation is to assist non-profit projects and organizations that contribute to the realization of a sustainable society. She has been active in the area over 15 years. She manages operations of WeON.
- Kanae Tokunaga
Associate Research Scientist in Coastal & Marine Economics, Gulf of Maine Research Institute. She grew up Tottori, Japan, and currently lives in Maine, USA. Her field of expertise include environmental and natural resource economics and ocean policy. Her current research interests include understanding: the logic and mechanisms of common-pool resource management (e.g., fishery resources), the psychological and social influences on the ecosystem values, the impacts of oceanic climate change on resource management and human-nature relationships. Completed Ph.D. in Economics and Graduate Ocean Policy Certficiate at University of Hawaii and worked as a Project Researcher at University of Tokyo Ocean Alliance.
- Shinya Baba
Shinya Baba is the President of Logics of Blue, a part-time teacher at Tokyo Medical and Dental University from November 2020 and a visiting associate professor at Iwate University from February 2021.
He graduated from the Graduate School of Fisheries Science at Hokkaido University in 2014, and worked as a systems engineer before starting his own business in 2017. He is a specialist in statistics, especially time series analysis, and operations research. He is interested not only in the analysis of data, but also in the whole process of decision-making by using data. He has published six books on data analysis and decision-making.
- Toshiya Hayashi
Toshiya Hayashi is a creative director, desinger, copywriter of we+ inc. Born in 1980, Toyama Prefecture. Graduated from Hitotsubashi University. Engaged in stage direction since his student days and, after working in advertising, he co-founded we+ inc. in 2013. From cross-disciplinary approaches like self-initiated work and installations to branding and communication strategies, he is well-versed in a wide range of fields and has handled many projects. Both his skills in advertising and design have earned him many domestic and international rewards. He is a part-time lecturer at Hosei University, Faculty of Engineering and Design (2019-). He also teaches at educational institutions and gives lectures at seminars.
- Jun Morimoto
Managing director CEO at HYPERIA inc. Born in Tokyo in 1990. After graduating from the Faculty of Agriculture, Kyoto University, he engaged in consulting business for Japanese companies at a consulting firm. After founding the startup of incubation business at the company, he became independent and led the startup of IT engineering community. He became interested in blockchain, and for a year he taught himself how to code dApps by creating multiple applications. Leading the development of traceability systems using blockchain and original blockchain at an electric power company.
- Shota Yasui
Shota Yasui is an Economic Research Scientist at AIlab in CyberAgent, Inc. Graduated from Rikkyo University in 2011 with a B.A. degree in economics and the Norwegian School of Economics with an MSc in Economics in 2013. Currently, he researches the intersection of Artificial Intelligence and Economics and has published peer-reviewed academic papers for some top conferences, including AAAI, ICML, NeurIPS, WWW, and SIGIR. He is also the author of the most popular introductory-level textbook of causal inference and econometrics in Japan.
- Taichi Yokokawa
Taichi Yokokawa is a researcher at Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC). Born in Hokkaido, Japan. Graduated from Faculty of Fisheries, Hokkaido University (B.S.), Graduate school of Fisheries, Hokakido University (M.S.) and Graduate school of Science, Kyoto University (D.S.). Postdoctoral fellow at Center for Ecological Research (CER), Kyoto Univeristy, and the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ). He is specialised in microbial ecology. Since 2010, he was an assistant professor and then a senior assistant professor at Ceter for Marine Environmental Studies (CEMS), Ehime University. He has a lot of experience in pelagic observation on research vessels.
- Raphael Roman
Raphael Roman is a research associate at Iwate University, Japan. He is originally from Switzerland. His current research takes a systemic approach to marine resources conservation and multispecies fisheries management across Japan. He also investigates the social-ecological impacts of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, with a particular emphasis on disaster risk management and coastal community resilience and recovery. With his interests ranging from new economic thinking and social-environmental well-being to sustainable ocean governance and biodiversity conservation, Raphael is passionate about interdisciplinary research and driven by the need to engage at the science-policy interface. He holds a Master of Public Policy and Global Affairs (MPPGA) from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, and a B.Sc. in Economics from the University of Montreal.
- Yuzuha Ogawa
Ogawa Yuzuha is a graduate student in the Fishery Innovation Programs, Division of Regional Innovation and Management, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Iwate University, Japan. Her emphasis is on fishery economics and machine learning. Her current research topic is “Exploration of operational optimization in the longline fishery in Kesennuma Bay, Miyagi Prefecture”. This research is addressed from the perspective of behavioral choices for navigating fishing boats at sea. She holds a B.Agr. in Fishery Systems Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University. She was born in Saitama prefecture. Her favorite place is the Kasai Rinkai Aquarium, Tokyo.
- Kaitoh Kanazawa
Kaitoh Kanazawa is a 4th-year student in the Fisheries Systems Course, Department of Food Production and Environment, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, Japan. Studying fisheries economy, management, programming language (R, python), statistics, and machine learning, the title of his graduation thesis is “Exploration of elements for stable management of multi-species catch fishery: Search for fishery management stability strategy based on portfolio fishery theory in bottom tow net fishing in Miyako City, Iwate Prefecture”. Born as the son of a boatman of offshore towing net fishing in Miyako City, he grew up with the sea and fish.
- Kei Kawamura
Kei Kawamura is a graduate student in the Fishery Innovation Programs, Division of Regional Innovation and Management, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Iwate University, Japan. As studying fisheries economics, fisheries resource management, and fisheries policy, he researches with a theme, “Fishery potential and fisheries challenges in Sanriku: Estimating potential benefits using bioeconomic analysis.” Born in Iwate prefecture, he got B.Agr. in Fisheries Science from Iwate University in 2021. As an undergraduate student, he was honored to present his research at the Japan Society of Fisheries Oceanography in 2019 and the Japan Society of Fisheries Oceanography in 2020.
- Yuga Kisara
Yuga Kisara is a 4th-year student in the Fisheries Systems Course, Department of Food Production and Environment, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, Japan. While studying bioeconomics, statistics, fisheries systems, and programming (R and python), he conducts a case study on the impact of marine climate change on fisheries in Japan, and research to build a sustainable and resilient fisheries system. He is also interested in the mechanism of ocean climate change and marine environmental conservation. Born in Fukushima, Miyagi prefecture, and raised in Sendai city, Miyagi prefecture.
- Natsumi Shimoyama
Natsumi Shimoyama is a 3rd-year student in the Fisheries Systems Course, Department of Food Production and Environment, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, Japan. She is interested in the resource management of marine products. As a member of the student group “Shar_E”, she collaborates with students from Ganesha University of Education in Bali, Indonesia for environmental education activities, and holds seminars and tree planting campaigns. Born in Miyagi prefecture, Japan.
- Kohsuke Nakamura
Kohsuke Nakamura is a graduate student in the Fishery Innovation Programs, Division of Regional Innovation and Management, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. As studying fishery economics, fishery policy, and the programming language R, he researches with the theme, “Portfolio Fishery Analysis to Explore Management Stability Strategies of Fishery Management Organizations and Fisheries Policy Measures for Regional Fisheries.” He presented his research at the Fisheries Society of Japan in 1991 and the Japan Society of Fisheries Oceanography in 2020. Born in Hakodate, Hokkaido as the son of a fisherman, he has been familiar with the fishing industry since his early age.
- Sae Mitsuhashi
Sae Mitsuhashi is a 3rd-year student in the Fisheries Systems Course, Department of Food Production and Environment, Faculty of Agriculture, Iwate University, Japan. Born in Nagano prefecture, Japan, having no sea around, she became longing for the sea and started learning Fisheries with especial interests in fishery resource management and programing language R. She joined a summer program in 2020 cohosted by Iwate University and Shanghai Ocean University, China and learned fisheries processing in Hokkaido.
If you have any questions about the project, please contact to the above email address.
We will contact you as soon as possible.