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Day 2: Local Revitalization Plan Team Presentations to the Mayor and Residents of Shodoshima!

Saito from EBIS

Following the Shimauchi Tour was the highlight of this year’s camp, the presentation contest!  The report of these white-hot presentations will be brought to you by Saito from Team EBISU.  This team presentation contest has become a regular aspect of Loftwork camps from Kyonanmachi, Chiba Prefecture two years ago and last year’s “The Future of Loftwork”!  This year’s theme was…

“Presenting ‘island visions’ to the mayor of Shodoshima Town!”

Since we went to all the trouble of visiting Shodoshima, we wanted to learn much about the place and     interact with the island’s people, not just a simple study tour.  We wanted to set up a place for conversing about this same theme…  It’s there that we, from an “outside perspective”, delved into the island’s appeal, history, and challenges and proposed ideas for “what could be done for the community” to the islanders (including the mayor!).

The site of the presentation contest was the former Yamayoshi Shoyukamaya that is also recognized as an important cultural property. It was truly a stage perfect for our Shodoshima presentations.

Of seven teams, three remained. It’s tough but we must fight on! Down to the wire in the hotter-than-expected heat.

Presenting plans featuring local qualities and each team’s various angles

Each team name was borrowed from the Seven Gods of Good Fortune.  The titles of each team’s presentation were as follows.  The interesting titles raised expectations!

  • EBISU – The Island that Welcomes You Home
  • DAIKOKU – Virgin Landscape
  • FUKUROKUJU – Koikuchi Shodoshima
  • BISHAMONTEN – Shodoshima = Learning

Team DAIKOKU presented a proposal brochure on the theme of virgin landscape.

A team proposing the importance of making things “personal” and interaction between the community and those around you.

The winning team brought true life in the form of a prototype.

Some teams made logos, some teams appealed with videos, some teams bottled up specialty goods of Shodoshima, some teams made presentation materials with cute brochures, etc. Each team came out with richly unique materials, procedures, and presentation methods as a result of hard work in between their duties!

These are the three teams that won the white-hot qualifying round (5-minute presentations) and moved on to the final round.

・BENZAITEN who proposed a new relationship between bicycles and Shodoshima with “CYCLE OF SHODOSHIMA

・FUKUROKUJU who proposed the idea of creating new media and bringing in a managing editor from outside the island to breathe in fresh air with “Koikuchi Shodoshima

・JUROJIN who proposed gifts of the island’s specialty items such as olives packed into bottles, a shape with mass appeal, with “

In the end, the winner of this close contest was “” who actually brought in bottled gift sets using olives they had made!

These bottled gift sets aren’t just about taste.  It’s a wonderful gift that comes in a wooden box that was decorated with the Fabcafe laser cutter that includes a heartwarming message inside the box from the producer.

The presentation of the winning team even included a real life prototype

The mayor of Shioda Town was also fascinated. In his feedback, he remarked on high possibly saying, “This is an idea that we could even actualize tomorrow!”

Having himself participated in the proposals to Shodoshima, Mr. Tsubaki gave advice more on the enthusiasm of the presentation itself rather than the idea.

What can we do with the power of creative? The outcomes of seriously considering is...

Loftwork focuses on the theme of “using the power of creativity to iron out business innovations together with clients”. What’s essential for local revitalization is the same, “the power of innovation”.

Unfortunately, Team EBISU wasn’t able to make it to the final but we were able to think a new on “what we can do” and “what can be done with the power of creativity” by facing the “regional problem solving” of Shodoshima.  The various opinions of the people of Shodoshima and hands-on practice were very educational!

Day 3: All-staff brainstorming contest! "World café" format workshop challenge.

This year’s camp was longer than usual at three days, two nights.  There were certainly some members a tinge burned out from the heat and lack of sleep after finishing the presentation contest at Yamayoshitei but it was the long-awaited camp.  The activities planned with Loftwork properly in mind as well were those of Day 3.  Sugawara (first-time camp participant) from Team HOTEI will take over the reporting from here.

The theme was straight to the point!

It was to “come up with next year’s company introduction”!

Those of you viewing this blog may already know but each year Loftwork overhauls its company introduction.


For coming up with next year’s company introduction, we held a “world café format” workshop with all Loftwork members. I’m sure there are also some people who are thinking, “what’s world café format?” …In truth, it was my first time as well.

Put simply, it refers to a discussion technique based on the idea that “knowledge and wisdom are not born in functional meeting rooms but instead emerge in spaces such as ‘cafes’ where people can converse openly and freely build networks.”

Loftwork 2012 is “pregnant”?

Now then, what we took on this time was an all-staff brainstorm of “what kind of ‘chemical reaction’ can we trigger in the people involved with Loftwork using next year’s company introduction?”  The flow of the workshop was as follows.


  • Make six groups of 5-6 people and sit around tables
  • Using the paper on the table, brainstorm freely for 20 minutes
  • One member from the table shall remain as “table host” while the others move to any table they likeAfter changing members, further discussions for 20 minutes
  • Afterwards, members who moved shall return to their original tables and groups will have 20 minutes to prepare presentation content
  • Each team shall present their results
  • Everyone will vote on the best presentation!

Here I would like to introduce just a bit from each team’s presentation!

The idea to provide tips held by Loftwork such as workshop tools and workbooks featuring more attractive visuals aimed at “creating materials better able to excite readers”.

The innovative idea of aiming for an encounter of “spouse = partner” likening “productions = children” and “loftwork = pregnant” also popped up.

There was also a team that presented from the angle of Loftwork as a sofa and thinking about “what kind of sofa it would be” and “who would sit and whether or not there would be an interesting chemical reaction”.

In the past, reasons such as failing to achieve a consensus in a large group brainstorm and some people being unable to speak have resulted in a “difficult” image. However, this time we were able to achieve a large group brainstorm of sixty members by adapting the world café format. We were able to experience a situation where new ideas were quickly put out and perceptions widened. Discussions with alternating members were stimulating and it felt like two hours was over in the blink of an eye.

In fact, the team’s idea that received the most staff sympathy from this year’s workshop will be extended into the concept for next year’s company introduction. 

Well, just how will next year’s company introduction turn out?  Stay tuned to find out!!  

In conclusion

For us first-timers to Shodoshima, this year’s idea proposal was quite a challenge.  But, having time to think earnestly, experience the island’s nature and industry, and being able to have the opportunity to interact at length with everyone was the foremost achievement of camp.  Because of the experiences of this year’s camp, each member thought about how they can utilize the “power of Loftwork” and strongly felt they would like to continue to move forward.

We would like to sincerely thank the people of Shodoshima as well as Mr. Kuroshima who helped with local planning, Mr. Tsubaki who enlivened members with valuable feedback, and the mayor of Shioda Town for taking time out of his busy schedule to attend our presentation contest.

Sequel: We received an introduction from the blog of Shodoshima Town’s mayor.

We received a report and feedback on Loftwork’s camp in the article on “Yokame no Semi” from the blog of Shodoshima Town’s mayor.

Along with warm cheers, we even received the wonderful comment of “if we can actually put this into policy”! With this opportunity, our plan may actually come into fruition.

Additionally, a variety of dialogues and exchanges have begun with the islanders we met at camp. Thank you so much everyone on Shodoshima! We look forward to continuing to work with you.