Nagoya University
Graduate program for real-world data circulation leaders

Staff Interview

Kazuya Takeda
Program coordinator, Professor, Department of Media Science, Graduate School of Information Science

» Research group website

Make mistakes, because learning from them is the key to a better life

Many students have natural ability, but fear of failure prevents them from actively using their talent. This program is a place to make mistakes.

"What? Make mistakes?" To tell you the truth, innovation and failure are inseparable. It is extremely rare for someone venturing into unknown territory to experience success right from the beginning. Most successful people initially encounter failure, but they are driven, so they persevere into unchartered waters without fear. An associate of the inventor Thomas Edison once remarked, "Isn't it a shame that with the tremendous amount of work you have done you haven't been able to get any results?" To which Edison replied, "I have gotten a lot of results! I know several thousand things that won't work."

Most students are not confident in their own abilities. Sadly, the fear of making mistakes holds them back, even though they have never experienced a major failure. This is why I say, "It's okay to make mistakes." Mistakes are opportunities to learn.

I hate to see capable young people not realize their potential due to fear. I believe that being aware of one's potential is the key to a better life, and that working through challenges builds self-awareness and self-confidence. I want students to challenge themselves in this program so that they will learn about their possibilities and believe in their own abilities.

Besides developing confidence, Japanese students are becoming part of a global workforce. Other Asian countries are growing very rapidly, and students from these countries work on their own initiative. These students actively market themselves to others, because in their societies no one gets noticed unless they promote themselves. Japanese students need to learn to adapt to this environment. As globalization continues, these young, motivated people will be their peers, especially when they are just starting their careers.

Although it may be difficult for Japanese people to understand people from other cultures and backgrounds, we must work together, and we should share the best qualities of the Japanese people while embracing other cultures. "Harmony is the key." All members of a team must unite towards a common goal. That is why I want students to challenge themselves and make mistakes in an international environment, so that they will grow into global leaders. That is exactly what this program offers.