From July 21 to 23, 2011, the Social Business Forum Asia in Fukuoka 2011 (SBFA) was held at Kyushu University 50th Memorial Auditorium and the Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk hotel.
The aim of this forum was to facilitate the creation of self-reliable recovery projects, with both medium and long-term perspectives, for survivors of the Great East Japan Earthquake through the practice of social business as advocated by Professor Muhammad Yunus (founder of Grameen Bank, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and Distinguished Professor of Kyushu University). Participating along with Prof. Yunus were representatives from national and international companies promoting social business all over the world.
The forum started with a reception party on July 21. On the following day, Professor Yunus gave a keynote speech and a panel discussion followed with panelists Tadashi Yanai, Chairman, President and CEO of FAST RETAILING CO. LTD., Yoshinobu Odaira, President of Yukiguni Maitake Co., Ltd., and others.
On July 22 the forum was held at Kyushu University 50th Memorial Auditorium on the Hakozaki Campus and attended by about one thousand people. Professor Yunus again delivered the keynote speech, and a panel discussion was held in which Etsuro Sotoo, reknowned sculptor of La Sagrada Familia, participated.
At Kyushu University, Grameen Creative Lab@Kyushu University has been organizing workshops for citizens to attend and discussing medium and long-term projects to support the self-reliance of survivors of the Great East Japan Earthquake through the practice of social business. On July 22, the Group Work Presentation was held in which six groups gave presentations in front of Professor Yunus on the projects they have been working on. Topics included “The Establishment of an Agricultural Corporation” and “The Event Planning.” These projects were to be addressed further in workshops. This forum marked the first step from Fukuoka to help survivors of the Great East Japan Earthquake through self-reliable recovery projects using the practice of social business.
For more information on the efforts of social business at Kyushu University, please visit
Top: After the panel discussion
From left to right: Professor Yunus; Hiroshi Hoshino, Professor of Kyushu University; Tadashi Yanai, Chairman, President and CEO of FAST RETAILING Co. Ltd.; Yoshinobu Odaira, President of Yukiguni Maitake Co., Ltd.; Christian Jersale, Representative Director and President of Veolia Water Japan K.K.; George Zarifi, President and Representative Director of Danone Japan Co., Ltd.; and Masaharu Okada, Professor of Kyushu University. (at the Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk hotel on July 22)
Middle: Professor Yunus giving a keynote lecture at the Public Symposium
at Kyushu University 50th Memorial Auditorium on July 23
Bottom: The symposium being held