Japan-Finland Beyond 5G/6G Joint Seminar “Seminar: Societal Impacts of Digitalization - Towards the society of Beyond 5G/6G-”

September 1, 2022


On Wednesday, May 11, 2022, the Japan-Finland Beyond 5G/6G Joint Seminar "Social Impacts of Digitization -Towards the society of Beyond 5G/6G-" co-hosted by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications and the Embassy of Finland in Tokyo, and supported by the University of Tokyo was held at the Yasuda Auditorium. The seminar itself was held in conjunction with the visit of Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin to Japan, with the aim of strengthening cooperation between the two countries and accelerating international collaboration efforts to promote Beyond 5G/6G in Japan. In addition to the welcome speech from President Teruo Fujii, and keynote speeches by Prime Minister Marin and Mr. Yoshiaki Takeuchi, Vice-Minister for Policy Coordination, a panel discussion was held on the theme of future collaboration between the two countries in the field of Beyond 5G/6G. The seminar was conducted in a hybrid format, targeting the participants of the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium and Finnish government officials. Approximately 400 people registered for online participation and 200 for in-person participation.

In his welcome speech, President Fujii noted that digital communication is an indispensable tool for realizing the "dialogue" in the UTokyo Compass, that the importance of digital communication as a lifeline is increasing daily in people's lives and in the recent tense global situation. He also hoped that this seminar would help strengthen future collaborations between Japan and Finland, which are promoting globally advanced initiatives in the Beyond 5G/6G field.

In her keynote speech, Prime Minister Marin touched on Finland's ambition to join NATO. She also noted that Japan and Finland are both highly developed countries that share the same values, and that as digitalization, AI, and other technological advances have a significant impact on our society, it is important for both countries, which possess world-class technology, to deepen cooperation and collaboration in industry, academia, and government, and expressed her desire to promote "Beyond 5G" through bilateral collaborations.

In the panel discussion, Prof. Takao Someya, Dean of the Graduate School of Engineering at the University of Tokyo, opened the session by touching on the University of Tokyo's efforts to solve social issues through technology, particularly the importance of next-generation cyberinfrastructure that connects people and fields and brings their wisdom together.
Following this, Prof. Akihiro Nakao, as moderator, introduced the panelists and talked about the status of Finland and Japan's joint efforts in Beyond 5G, especially the MoU between the Beyond 5G Promotion Consortium and the 6G Flagship Project, the first title of Global Fellow being awarded to Professor Matti Latva-Aho in the Graduate School of Engineering of the University of Tokyo, and the establishment of the Next Generation Cyber Infrastructure Cooperative Research Organization
In the discussion that followed the introduction, the panelists exchanged opinions from the perspectives of universities, companies, and national academic institutions in order to determine areas of collaboration between the two countries and what concrete first steps should be taken to promote cutting-edge technological cooperation between Japan and Finland, especially in information and telecommunications.
It was suggested that the technological areas in which the two countries should collaborate include: (1) establishment of a global and inclusive information and communication network, (2) establishment and application of a robust, secure, and high-quality information and communication infrastructure, (3) investment in an environmentally friendly green revolution, (4) comprehensive development in the fields of information communication and semiconductors, quantum, AI/machine learning, cybersecurity, etc., (5) promotion of demonstrations through testbeds and trials.
Prof. Makoto Gonokami commented on the importance of promoting the trinity of information communication, semiconductors, and quantum technology, as well as the social acceptability, consensus building, and the importance of collaboration between Japan and Finland for peaceful use of technology, and that universities should be used as hubs for comprehensive knowledge for these purposes.
As concrete steps forward, the following issues were also discussed and proposed as the conclusion of the one-hour panel discussion: (1) establishment of joint research systems (virtual research centers, workshops and joint campus testbeds, medical-industrial collaborations), (2) field experiments between industry and academia through global forums and showcases at the Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, and (3) funding to promote R&D in international industry-academia-government collaborations.


  • Date: Wednesday, May 11, 2022 (10:00-12:00)
  • Style: Hybrid on-site and online (Zoom)
  • Language: Japanese and English (simultaneous interpretation available)


  • Welcome speech: Teruo Fujii, President, The University of Tokyo
  • Video message: Fumio Kishida, Prime Minister of Japan
  • Keynote Speech (1): Sanna Marin, Prime Minister of Finland
  • Keynote Speech (2): Yoshiaki Takeuchi, Vice-Minister for Policy Coordination, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications of Japan
  • Panel Discussion:
      Takao Someya, Professor, Dean of the Graduate School of Engineering, the University of Tokyo
      Matti Latva-Aho, Professor, University of Oulu
      Paula Eerola, President, Academy of Finland
      Hideyuki Tokuda, President, National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT)
      Makoto Gonokami, President, Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN)/Professor, the University of Tokyo
      Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO, Nokia
      Seiji Maruyama, Senior Executive Vice President, NTT DOCOMO
      Akihiro Nakao, Professor, the University of Tokyo
  • Closing Remarks: Yasushi Kaneko, Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications of Japan
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