March 2012


Cast-Iron Cookware Makes Comeback

The kitchen might not seem the most obvious place to find cast iron straight from the foundry, but in ecological circles traditionally made pots, pans and kettles are making a huge comeback.

Will We Ever Learn?

Corporate learning isn’t working. Heroically, time and treasure are being used by leaders at firms to improve staff performance. Inherent in that goal is that we, as recipients, learn something new or re-learn what we supposedly should know already.
Media March 2012

News in Brief

Your monthly digest of UK-Japan news
Industry March 2012

Banks in Japan Continue to Hire

Japan’s banking sector is a standout in Asia, as banks continue to hire people with specialist skills and vacancy activity grows. While this activity has not returned to levels predating the global financial crisis, it shows, nevertheless, that the impact of current global economic conditions has not been as intense in Japan as in some of its Asian neighbours.
Translation March 2012


Media March 2012

Hello Kitty: English or Japanese

A controversy is brewing about Hello Kitty’s citizenship.
UKTI March 2012

Market Entry

A small firm based in Cheltenham is thriving proof that Japan’s electronics giants do not have the monopoly on cutting-edge technology.
Motors March 2012

New Jeeps for New Japan

The philosophy was to take the road less travelled. Those roads can be difficult to find in Japan, which is far better known for elevated motorways and traffic-cluttered back streets. But the vehicle that emerged from the toughest possible proving ground —war-torn Europe of the 1940s—has a spirit that can also be seen in its owners.
Exhibition March 2012

Postcards to and from Japan

When a postcard arrived for a colleague from their parents after the Tohoku Disaster in 2011, the author found new hope that all was not lost.
Interview March 2012

Crawford Gillies

Appointed chairman of Scottish Enterprise/Scottish Development International (SDI) in 2009, Crawford Gillies is also chairman of Control Risks Group Holdings Ltd and a non-executive director of Standard Life plc.
Industry March 2012

The new rules of money

Planning your finances and understanding how to protect and build your wealth requires professional advice. If you haven’t started planning yet, now is the time to start.
Simon Farrell Publisher
March 2012

Building the UK-Japan Partnership

Knowing the English language is dominated in Japan by the American model, I was relieved to be handed a free copy of the Financial Times on a recent flight with a US airline from Tokyo to Saipan, a US territory.
Books March 2012

Book Reviews

This month: Viewed Sideways and Toshioita neko tono kurashikata
Cover Story March 2012

Lord of the Rings

Lord Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games organising committee, offered Tokyo some advice on how to bid successfully for the 2020 event: focus on the why, not the how. Coe’s moving 2005 speech, about how the Olympics inspired his own sporting career, is often credited for tipping the balance in favour of the UK capital’s bid to host the games.
Sports March 2012

Head and Shoulders

Japan may not have been designed for someone who stands 1.9m tall and weighs nearly 18 stone (114kg), but James Haskell says he is fitting in just fine.
Arts & Culture March 2012

Rock Challenge Japan

The Rock Challenge was marked its fifth year in Japan, although the event had been put off from November because of the lingering impact of the Great East Japan Earthquake.
People March 2012

Baptism by Fire

By now, Victoria Yoshimura expected to have a successful career in public relations or marketing for a multinational in London.
Review March 2012

2012 Jeep Compass

Launched here in March this year, the nifty and responsive Compass is a functional wagon with light and consistent steering, clear views all round, and very low noise.
Opinion March 2012

Taking Care of Crises

“Crisis” is a word firms hate and consultants love. A crisis to a firm’s board usually means share price freefall and heads rolling. To a consultant, it’s more likely to signal exciting work and big fees from clients who aren’t in a position to argue.
Opinion March 2012

A Case for Internships

During my rewarding internship with Refugees International Japan (RIJ), I had a valuable opportunity to closely observe something that has been in the news a lot recently: how organisations—especially NGOs—should achieve accountability.
Disaster Aftermath March 2012

Business Continuity Planning

It’s only when disaster strikes and technology fails—such as after the 11 March earthquake and tsunami last year—that we realise how dependent we are on technology.
BCCJ Event March 2012

Special 51 Night: Road to Recovery

The UK community’s compassion, caring and commitment to the people of north-east Japan were underlined at the unprecedented “Special 51 Night: Road to Recovery” event at the British Embassy Tokyo on 8 March, with more than 200 people gathering to mark almost exactly one year since the Great East Japan Earthquake.
Publicity March 2012

How GSK Helped People in Tohoku

Although its Tokyo headquarters sustained only minor damage from the earthquake and tsunami of 11 March 2011, GSK quickly realised that many others were considerably less fortunate. After first confirming that all employees were safe and determining the amount of damage, the focus turned to helping those most in need.
Disaster Aftermath March 2012

3/11: Rebuilding Japan

The response to the disasters of March 2011 from all sectors of the British community in Japan—corporate, charitable and individual—has been phenomenal. “We don’t just want to give communities money; we want to get them going again.”
Japanese Media March 2012

What You Missed In The Japanese Press

Catching on, according to the Sankei Shimbun (26 February), is the idea of "collaboration rooms", an arrangement according to which hotels tie up with manufacturers and direct-marking businesses to promote their products.
Media March 2012

JV to Make Fuel-cell Systems

Media March 2012

Hulu to Show BBC Films

TV personality Cristel Takigawa appeared at a British Embassy Tokyo press conference to announce that Internet streaming service Hulu had reached a video distribution deal with the BBC.
Investment March 2012

The New Tokyo Pro-Bond Market

The TOKYO PRO-BOND Market, a debt-securities exchange market for professional investors, was set up in May 2011 by Tokyo AIM (Alternative Investment Market), Inc.
March 2012

What a Difference a Year Makes

As the BCCJ year reaches a close on 31 March, it is interesting to reflect on what went before and to see what lessons can be learned as the next 12 months begin to unfold for the chamber.
Media March 2012

Cumbria Complains about Olympics

Firms in the Lake District, popular with Japanese tourists, claim the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games is damaging business.