Trial to invigorate local communities -Mie Mirai

Communities

As a trial to invigorate local communities, Mie Prefecture carries out a program “-Connecting us and society with [Happiness]-Mie Mirai” to come up with ideas for issue resolution towards Happiness of Mie Prefecture by people from all generations in the community coming together under the coordination of industry, government and academia along with the theme.

Hosted by Coca-Cola Bottlers Japan Inc. and an NPO M Bridge cooperation with planning by Research Center of Professor Aoki in Mie University faculty of humanities and Mie Prefecture, the activity has been carried out under the coordination of industry, government and academia since 2017 with an objective to activate local communities as an attempt to cultivate a future through dialogue of issues faced by the local people in the community in a proactive manner.

Roles of each company

Coca-Cola Bottlers Japan Inc. Host and support of planning and operation.
NPO M Bridge Host and facilitation of Representative Director Satoshi Yoneyama who is an expert specializes in conducting workshops.
Mie Prefecture Cooperation in planning by providing issues, presenting open data relating to the issues and offering topics of discussion.
Mie University Cooperation in planning and obtaining comments from Associate Professor Masao Aoki in Mie University who is an expert on CSR and CSV.

Details of the program

As the number of participants grow each time from 129 in 2017 and 265 in 2018 with stronger involvement by Mie Prefecture and schools, the operation structure was also reinforced in 2018 with Mie Prefectural government proactively providing issues and cooperation from wide range of departments as well as with Mie University offering a forum for extension courses.

2017 “U-29 Brainstorming conference” (workshops in a brainstorming format)
1st. theme Active involvement of male & female as well as work-life balance -U-29's perspective on ”Work & home”-
Description: Mie Prefecture Department of Environmental and Social Affaires Diversity Social Promotion Section Gender-Equal Team
2nd. theme Culture & richness in mind -U-29's place of belonging (third place)”-
Description: Mie Prefecture Department of Environmental and Social Affaires Cultural Promotion Section Culture Planning Team
3rd. theme NPO and sustainability -U-29's”necessities even they don't generate money”-
Description: Mie Prefecture Department of Environmental and Social Affaires Diversity Social Promotion Section NPO Team
4th. theme Mie Mirai round-table talk (look back)
2018 “Idea-thon Mie Mirai”(ideas+marathon=Workshops in an idea-thon format)
1st. theme Retention of young people in the Prefecture -Let's ask university students “what are the attractive points of Mie?”-
Description: Extension course by Mie Prefecture Department of Strategic Planning, Planning Section, Research Center of Professor Aoki in Mie University faculty of humanities, Mie University
2nd. theme Mie where we wish to meet, give birth and nurture –“What is a child-rearing & family-friendly community” we create together?-
Description: Mie Prefecture Department of Children and Welfare Declining Birthrate Combat Section
3rd. theme Diversity and “Happiness” -For creation of a diverse society-
Description: Mie Prefecture Department of Environmental and Social Affaires Diversity Social Promotion Section
4th. theme Wrap-up session “100 ways of future”
2019 SDGs Workshop “Mie Mirai”
1st. theme 〈Welcome to the Workshop〉 SDGs game
2nd. theme 〈Theme A “Society”〉 Why are the people, who are uninterested in the creation of communities, uninterested?
- Considering public-interest activities (NPOs, social contribution by corporates, community associations, PTA, etc.)
Presented by: Diversity Society Promotion Section, Environment and Life Department, Mie Prefecture
3rd. theme 〈Theme B “Environment”〉 How can we better live with plastic?
-- Considering a wise approach to marine plastic litter and recycling -
Presented by: Air and Water Environment Section, Environment and Life Department, Mie Prefecture; Waste and Recycling Section, Waste Measure Bureau, Environment and Life Department, Mie Prefecture; Coca-Cola Bottlers Japan
4th. theme 〈Theme C “Economy”〉 Best company to work at! Best boss to work for!
-- Considering the prevention of short-term turnover and career development
Presented by: Employment Measure Section, Employment and Economy Department, Mie Prefecture

Participants reflect on the ideas presented during the workshop and explore the possibilities on how to use such ideas for businesses, government, schools, and civic activities so that “we can connect with society through “happiness” as suggested by the subtitle.
We work on how to hold workshops at Mie University so that many people can take part, such as offering some sessions open to public, allowing children to come along, etc.

Comments from participants

  • “As I came up with an unexpected solution idea through dialogue with people from various backgrounds, it served me as a trigger for myself to take action. I believe continuation of such forums leads to issue resolution and invigoration. ”
  • “After hearing various comments where people from diverse age groups, occupations, gender gathered together, I felt that “there must be something only I can do because of my position”.
  • “I felt connecting with many people would lead closer to solution though it's hard to solve by an individual alone. By taking advantage of the insight gained through the forum, I wish to involve in activities to better Mie Prefecture.”
  • “It was worthwhile to experience a moment of new opinions generate within me through exchange of opinions. I wish to join such forum on an ongoing basis and involve in resolution of issues in my community also.”

We offer a place where people can proactively involve for a happy future of Mie Prefecture through exchange of information and wisdom and interactions among those from various backgrounds, to be able to ultimately lead to actions leveraging insights of each individual.