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Social ContributionEducation and Science

As a manufacturer and world leader in technology, we support the development of the next generation.

Educational Support for Children

Young People Programme Harnesses the Power of Positive Visual Storytelling

Canon Group companies in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) conduct the Young People Programme where the young people are equipped with the skills and tools to harness the power of positive visual storytelling to drive social change. Using the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) proposed by the United Nations as a framework, we give young people the opportunity to talk about the global issues that affect their futures.

In 2017, the program focused on the six countries: Finland, Germany, Italy, Poland, Russia and the UK. In Germany, Canon Ambassador photographer Daniel Etter talked to young participants on the power of photos and video for communicating. The program also featured a lecture by a UN representative on the purpose of the SDGs and how youth could contribute locally.

In 2018, Canon plans to expand the scope of the program to include at least 15 countries, continuing to provide the right tools and coaching to young people, we’re helping to bring their stories to life and are committed to making sure their voices are heard.

Workshop participants

Local program to improve educational environment for children: “For the Next Generation”

Canon Vietnam and Canon Marketing Vietnam promote various activities through For the Next Generation, a local program to improve the educational environment for children, who will serve as the next generation of Vietnam.

The Friendship School Chain Project, one of the most well known of these activities, works to construct classrooms and donate desks and chairs to schools in rural areas where infrastructure development is slow moving.

Project volunteers regularly visit recipient schools to help with infrastructure renovation such as building tables and chairs, school repainting, and to present donations of school supplies. Over the ten years since its launch in 2007, the project has spread to 88 schools in 28 provinces.

Canon Vietnam also provides scholarships to talented high school and university students from underprivileged families, loans bicycles to students who need to commute long distances, and conducts environmental classes at elementary schools.

Canon Vietnam’s aim in these activities is to have employees work directly with children and local people as volunteers. The activities provide valuable opportunities for employees to deepen connections with the community and with each other.

Light Laboratory a Fun Place to Learn

Canon Inc. hosts the Light Laboratory educational program for children through a partnership with Japan Science Foundation.

The program aims to spark children’s interest in science and technology by providing a place where they can enjoy learning. The Light Laboratory explains the science behind the optics technologies found in Canon products in an easy-to-understand way, through the history of cameras and various experiments. The experiment using a laser beam to show the refraction and scattering of light by a lens drew gasps of admiration. The experiment on long-exposure photography prompted some children from school tour groups to wish they could do it in school.

Held in the Experiment Stadium corner of The Science Museum (Tokyo), operated by the Foundation, 8,073 children experienced the wonders of the Light Laboratory in 2017.

Robot Programming Class to Communicate ICT Basics to Elementary Students

In anticipation of programming becoming a compulsory subject in Japan from 2020, in August 2017 Canon Imaging Systems (CIS) organized a “Robot Programming Class” for eight elementary school students at its Niigata head office. With support from CIS employees, the students used computers to program robots to throw dice. The class concluded with a game to see which of the programmed robots could get the highest score by throwing the dice furthest. Students expressed their impressions of the class afterwards with such comments as, “I enjoyed creating my own program,” and “It was fun getting (the robot) to make a human movement.”

One of the robots created by students

Support for Universities

Supporting the Development of Optics Technologies Underlying Major Industries Through Industry-Academia Collaboration

Optics technology is essential to a variety of major industries. Opportunities for the systematic study of optics in Japan, however, have been on the decline. To remedy this situation, Canon actively supported Utsunomiya University, which has a strong relationship with Canon’s Utsunomiya Office where the Optics R&D Center is located, to successfully establish the Center for Optical Research & Education (CORE) at the university. Since CORE was established in 2007, a total of 421 students have completed the optics course. In 2017, Canon dispatched six lecturers, including three visiting professors, to enhance the educational system. Canon will continue to support CORE and the development of optics technologies.

Special Design Classes for Global HR Development

With the aim of fostering the next generation of human resources, Canon has teamed up with universities around the world to hold special design classes.

In 2017, Canon conducted a special course at Zhejiang University in China at the request of the Japan Institute of Design Promotion. Held in a workshop format over eight days, the course proved to be a mutually beneficial exchange: the students received valuable design instruction while Canon gathered information on student needs. Canon also organized other special lectures at five Japanese universities.

Internship Program for Students

Canon Inc. has an internship program that aims to support the career development of students. Canon offered 11 internships to students on administrative, technical or specialist tracks in 2017. A total of 240 students have benefited from the program to date.

Supporting Research Activities that Contribute to the Sustainable Development of Humankind Through the Canon Foundation

Canon established the Canon Foundation in 2008 with the aim of contributing to the ongoing prosperity and well-being of humankind through a wide range of support activities for both organizations and individuals engaged in research, business or education in various academic fields, most notably science and technology. The Canon Foundation has established two research grant programs, the Creation of Industrial Infrastructure grant and Pursuit of Ideals grant, both of which are open to researchers working at universities and other public research institutions throughout Japan.

In 2017, we held the fifth Pursuit of Ideals symposium in July, and the sixth Creation of Industrial Infrastructure research results presentation in August, providing opportunities for grant recipients to report on research progress. Twelve projects were selected for Creation of Industrial Infrastructure grants in 2017, while three were chosen for Pursuit of Ideals grants on the theme of food. A total of ¥240 million in grants was awarded.

Moreover, to make research-related results and other information available to the public, the Canon Foundation Library has published four volumes containing articles by researchers. Our related PR campaign is providing local media with information on regional revitalization-linked research.