Japan has long been a leading force for research and development in many industries – from engineering and pharmaceuticals to robotics – and also has a strong academic community with a driven spirit as evidenced by its 22 Nobel Prize winners in areas such as physics, chemistry, and medicine. Japan has one of the largest national memberships within many international associations, and a strong tradition of hosting international association meetings. Japan also has several industry clusters around the country, making trips including technical visits and networking opportunities easily organized.
Japan has a great amount of experience in hosting international association conferences and meetings. Just recently, in October 2012, one of the world's largest meetings, the Annual Meeting of the IMF and World Bank Group, came to Tokyo with its more than 10,000 delegates on very short notice. The meeting destination had to be rescheduled a short 16 months in advance, and the Japan team coordinated the move to Japan with passion and professionalism, ensuring a smooth transfer and a very successful meeting – which was very much appreciated by the event's organizers. Japan's network of local convention bureaus, professional congress organizers and DMCs bring this level of professionalism to all events in Japan.
Japan is known as the country with the Hospitality. The traditional Japanese hospitality roots in the culture of courtesy and considering for others, especially towards visitors. Hospitality remains a key part of Japanese culture today, and certainly applies to the meetings and events industry. We constantly receive fantastic feedback from conference organizers and delegates for our high quality of service which they receive during their time in Japan. In fact, satisfaction surveys of visitors to Japan show that 91% of respondents are either "very satisfied" or "satisfied" with their trip, and a massive 93% want to visit again (2012 JTA Consumption Trend Survey for Foreigners Visiting Japan).
For many years now, Japan has been famous worldwide for its famous artists, architects, fashion designers and other creative people – all of whom to contribute to a modern"Cool Japan". Their creativity and artistic sensibility stem from Japan's sophisticated and ancient traditional culture, rich in craftsmanship and a strong aesthetic sense. This sense of aesthetic and pride in one's work are present in Japan's meeting venues, hotels and meetings industry staff today.
Japan stretches a considerable distance from north to south, all the way from a subfrigid zone in the north of Hokkaido to the subtropical zone in southern Okinawa. With this huge geographic variety comes a great diversity in destinations and activities available to visitors, including meeting and incentive participants. Japan's various cities and regions offer everything from snowy mountainside ski resorts to coral reef-ringed islands, with large metropolitan areas and charming rural villages. Throughout the country, there are dozens of government-appointed"International Convention Cities", all of which have meeting facilities, hotels, research centers, universities and so on to be utilized by international meetings. On top of all of these, up and down the country, Japan offers "only in Japan" venues that add the necessary local flair to events.