See-D Contest: Technologies Appropriate to Local Needs Will Save the World


The ‘See-D’ which I introduced to you recently, was held at the Fukutake Hall of University of Tokyo on July 31st Saturday.  About 200 people participated, mainly young students, including those who by coincidence came across the event and decided to join.  Kopernick is one of the important supporters of this meeting..

This event is hosted by Ms. Riku and Mr. Tsuchiya (also members of MIT D-Lab, currently living in Boston), D-Lab Japan office, other organizations, and some students from Boston who are in Japan for their summer vacation.  These people are the main driving force for planning and carrying out this conference.

It is very important that such projects/actions are created, spread and encouraged for action, particularly by young people.

At the See-D conference room, twitter and UstreamRef.1) were displayed on the screen in real time.  Live program with East Timor through Skype enabled the audience to  communicate by writing some comment via Post-It to moderating staff.  The three people in East Timor responded in English and those comments were instantaneously summarized in Japanese and shown on the Screen; a kind and considerate service!  The report of this event is posted on the web site of See-D Japan  (in Japanese).

Those gathered are eager and enthusiastic in search for what they could do. Three panelists with overseas experiences through JICA programs shared their work and thoughts with us.  One of them was Mr Ide who now works at Sumitomo Chemicals and its mosquito net or BetNet in Tanzania. I met him first time last March year in my flight to Dubai, sitting next to each other and we met a few time since then.

I had an opportunity to further encourage them in my ending remarks.  Here again my focus was on ‘the importance of first hand experience' (Ref.1, 2) and ‘advice to take leave of absence from school and go abroad’.  I think the event was very hot.  I had the same impression by browsing through the many tweets. 

Anyway, everybody was so lively and high spirited.  The conference fully utilized high-technologies, too.  It was truly a motivating, good, happy conference.  By the way, Mr. Miyoshi (in Japanese)  whom I have introduced in this site many times, currently working in Bangladesh, also joined via twitter.

After this meeting, I moved to join ‘Global Health Summer Course'  which we co-host with the University of Tokyo.  It was almost 7 pm, but everybody was still working hard to make policy recommendations, presentations, having discussions. Thanks to all participants and staffs.  Tomorrow, they will present their policy recommendations in the presence of several legislators.