Japanese Firms’ Innovation Strategies in the 21st Century

The landscape within which Japanese companies innovate stands altered by
events of the past two decades. Buffeted and metamorphosed by the forces of a severe
asset value shock followed by a decade of economic malaise, then a decade of growth,
and now the recent financial crisis, Japanese firms are transforming their innovation
strategies because the institutional basis of those strategies seems to be altered by new
economic realities. Even though the basis of the strategies, and perhaps the strategies
themselves, are changing, Japan is maintaining its level of innovation according to recent
data. Small companies seem to be increasingly part of recent innovation. So we ask,
how is the level maintained given that the strategies that created Japan's acknowledged
industrial innovativeness seem to be transformed by events?