From the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s, major institutional reform was undertaken in Japan to promote university–industry collaboration. The term “university–industry collaboration” appeared frequently in the media and became a fad. However, this did not last long, and it peaked in 2003. University–industry collaboration entered the spotlight again after 2010, when “open innovation” (Chesbrough, 2003) became popular in Japan. At that time, a new type of university–industry collaboration emerged. University–industry collaboration in Japan has traditionally taken the form of “small-scale, short-term, individual” contracts. In contrast, this new type of collaboration features “large-scale, long-term, comprehensive” contracts.
What can be done to improve future parameters? Company X is a large firm with 1,300 full-time employees and 35 branches throughout Japan. Data collected from questionnaires showed that as the president of the company made site visits to the company’s branches, which created opportunities for dialog with employees, these efforts led to greater expectations for the future and improved those branches’ future parameters vis-à-vis branches that were not visited. This study found that this impact was even greater as employees’ attendance at social gatherings involving employees following these conversations was more than 80%. However, this impact disappeared when the company got a new president and this practice was discontinued. In other words, future parameters are not constants; hence, maintaining them requires constant attention.
It has been explained in the past that multinational firms gain competitive advantage by creating a structure for the international division of labor through allocating certain activities in their value chains to advantageous locations. Actually, however, a firm's subsidiaries are exposed to business environments that differ from those of their home country; hence, an international division of labor may have resulted from an emergent strategy. The Ikegami Mold Engineering Group has production sites in Japan, Mexico, and China that manufacture and sell molds. The Mexico site differs from the others in that it repairs and overhauls molds. This business was not planned in advance but was rather built from an emergent strategy because of the business environment in Mexico: the industrial infrastructure is not suited to the manufacture of molds, the Mexican market exhibited demand for the repair and overhaul of molds, and Ikegami had built up the technological capabilities to respond to that need. Thus, a new business was born to repair and overhaul molds.
Novel ideas tend to be resisted within existing organizations. Mobilizing resources requires that legitimacy be secured in some form. In the case of the development of JR Central's 300-series Shinkansen, Japan National Railway, which had existed to date, was broken up and privatized, and JR Central, which generated most of its revenue from the Shinkansen, was established, limiting players and allowing the company to gain the approval of most internal organizations. In other words, the company was able to acquire legitimacy by increasing the ratio of supporters rather than the absolute number of supporters.