Since 2006, the Japanese-German Center Berlin (JDZB) holds the German-Japanese Young Leaders Forum. The ten-day program addresses promising young leaders from business, politics, administration, media and the academic world - eight from Germany and eight from Japan. The last three days of the program consist of an alumni conference, where current participants meet alumni from previous years. In 2011, the Japanese-German Young Leaders Forum Alumni Association (JGYLFAA) was founded. The JDZB is grateful for the active network, which brings German-Japanese relations to life. This year the alumni association has launched a new series of events - Franziska Weiser, a participant from 2018 (when the focus topic was "Transport and Mobility in Germany and Japan"), reports on this below.
The Japanese-German Young Leaders Forum Alumni Association held the first panel of its new Sustainability Talks on April 24, 2021. The talks are part of the alumni association's launched transformation process. Under the title "Unlocking our Potential", the association aims to reposition itself for its members and in its external image. From now on, the talks will take place regularly once in a quarter and highlight relevant sustainability topics from the perspective of Japan and Germany. The goal of the panel series is to create more interaction points for the members of the association, especially during Corona times, but also beyond that, in addition to the annual conference.
The talks are primarily intended for our own members to be able to meet again at regular intervals during the year, learn something new together, and exchange ideas in a relaxed atmosphere. However, in addition to our own members, the doors will also be open to members from other associations of the Bosch Alumni Network from the next event onwards.
The topic for the first panel was mobility. Sustainable mobility is of high importance for Japan and Germany not only since "Fridays for Future". IMAMURA Wataru, TAKEKOSHI Minori (two members of the JGYLFAA) and Dominik SŁONECKI (external speaker) gave insights into their work from their respective perspectives - government, corporation and investor/startup. Afterwards, a discussion was held to answer questions and exchange views on the topic. It became clear that mobility does not only take a road-based form, but can also take place on water for example, and that new ways to a more sustainable form of mobility are being sought/taken in all areas, both in Japan and in Germany. In addition to the informal inputs, space for interpersonal exchange was deliberately created through ice-breaker sessions and an open discussion.
An exchange that unfortunately, due to the current Corona situation, could only take place digitally. As soon as personal exchange is possible again, at least hybrid events should take place - ideally alternating between Japan and Germany.
Possible topics for the next Sustainability Talk have already been identified. In the coming weeks, the selection will be finalized and preparations for the next talk will begin.
About the author:
Franziska Weiser studied international industrial engineering (M.Eng. - Wiesbaden / Boston) with a focus on innovation management, energy technology and vehicle development.
She has been working in various positions in the mobility sector in Germany and abroad for over nine years. Most recently as subject area manager for Digital Mobility Services at TÜV Rheinland. After participating in the Kyoto Startup Summer School, she founded her own company, Carré Mobility GmbH, and has been closely associated with Japan ever since. In 2018, she was part of the German-Japanese Young Leaders Forum and in 2020 she has taken on the role of 2nd Chair in the Japanese-German Young Leaders Forum Alumni Association.