Under the Pepper Social Contribution Program, SoftBank Group corp. lends its humanoid robot, Pepper, to local governments, NPOs and other organizations for three years. The Program includes programming education for elementary-school and junior-high-school students, teaching tool development using Pepper and solution exploration for e social problems. The support for next generation education using Pepper has been rolled out beyond Japan to all over the world including the U.S., Canada and China.
Participation in Community
Under the corporate philosophy “Information Revolution — Happiness for everyone,” the SoftBank Group lays out the sustainability vision “Help shape the next 300 years for our future generations and the planet.” The SoftBank Group is committed to promoting social contribution activities including supporting the development of the next generation based on one of the activity themes “Maximize our potential as a group by joining forces with people around the world to make a positive impact on society.”
We live in an age of rapid technological change known as the information revolution. The SoftBank Group helps the next generation thrive in this age by providing educational support and leadership training programs that make use of information technologies. We believe this not only benefits society but also helps the Group attract future talent that can carry our business forward.
Each Group company follows an independent decision-making process to create social contribution programs that draw on the strengths and resources of its outstanding technologies or business models. This work, and the synthesis of these programs in specific fields such as youth education, can be seen as one manifestation of the SoftBank Group’s Cluster of No. 1 Strategy, a growth strategy by which we seek to create social value through capital synergies and shared visions between diverse Group companies.
Program Assisted by Pepper－Support of Next Generation Education
TOMODACHI SoftBank Leadership Program－Development Program for Leaders Charged with Recovery from Great East Japan Earthquake
Every year since 2012, the SoftBank Group Corp. and the U.S.-Japan Council have been inviting high-school students in Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima — the prefectures most severely hit by the Great East Japan Earthquake — to a three-week intensive course at the University of California, Berkeley, in the U.S. The students participate in the Y-PLAN (Youth-Plan, Learn, Act, Now!), a problem-solving workshop, to learn about global leadership skills and local contribution activities. After returning to Japan, they actively take part in various contribution activities in their local areas by leveraging what they learned.
Data on Participants (as of March 2019)
Cumulative participants : 1,000
Projected number of participants By the end of FY2021 : 1,100
Putting the World on a Better Track through Social Innovation (Arm)
To create a future where people can live in an optimal environment through the application of leading edge technologies by the end of 2030, Arm Limited established 2030Vision, an initiative to collaborate with various organizations and entities, and is striving to contribute to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Simprints is a flagship example of the initiative. With Simprints, Arm aims to build a platform which enables medical professionals to verify the identity of individual patients and access accurate medical records in the world’s poorest rural communities, allowing patients a range of services.
More than 1.1 billion people in the world lack the means to verify their identity, and are unable to access various indispensable services in their daily lives, such as medical care, education, and asset management. Simprints was launched under Arm’s policy to promote social innovation and benefit those who do not have sufficient access to education and other essential services. So far, the technology has been introduced to 11 countries, providing Simprints services to more than 250,000 beneficiaries.
Also, Arm has been promoting to offer technological opportunities to non-profit organizations across the world, aiming to develop human resources playing active roles in the area of STEM (*) and leading the future. For example, in 2016, Arm co-established “Micro:bit Educational Foundation” with more than 30 international organizations to communicate the joy of programing and to develop children’s creativity and logical thinking ability by offering programming learning materials on IoT “micro:bit ” to more than several hundreds of thousands of children throughout the world.
General term covering the education area of science, technology, engineering and mathematics
Promotion of Volunteer Activities by Employees
SoftBank Group Corp. and SoftBank Corp. employees are annually granted two days of paid leave to participate in volunteer activities of their choice. Additional days are granted if necessary such as in recovery assistance activities for disaster areas. At Yahoo Japan Corp., employees may take up to three days off per year to participate in activities, such as volunteer work, to assist in addressing social problems.
Social Contributions in Recruiting Activities
Based on the Cluster of No.1 Strategy, the SoftBank Group has made investments in leading companies in diverse areas and has carried out its businesses in various regions across the world. Investments by the SoftBank Group reflects its extremely flexible group management, rather than controlling and managing portfolio companies by making them wholly owned subsidiaries. In recruitment activities, we place emphasis on employment in the area of operation and in principle, employ local people. By working together with local experts, we are able to conduct our businesses in a way closely connected to the culture of the specific country or region and activating the local employment market. We also conduct fair recruitment and personnel evaluation, neutral to individuals’ backgrounds such as social status, class and academic record. The SoftBank Group promises fair and equal employment opportunities, regardless of individuals’ upbringing and other factors.