The aspirations of “Hitotsubashi Business Review” To lead management studies in the 21st century as the only link between theory and practice in Japan

Hitotsubashi Business Review is a successor to Business Review created in 1953 as an official journal of Hitotsubashi University Institute of Business Research. Eventually as Japanese companies developed their competitiveness, there grew the need for the development of theoretical and empirical management research of Japanese origin, rather than relying on theories imported from the West. In 1997, when the Institute of Business Research was reorganized as the Institute of Innovation Research, the journal too, was relaunched as a nationwide business management journal in 2000 through strategic collaboration with Toyo Keizai Inc. Ever since, the journal has continuously published a wide range of works on innovation including many interdisciplinary researches in recent years.

The spirit behind the relaunch was “to publish theoretical and empirical management research carried out by the best researchers from across Japan.” Like the Harvard Business Review, which publishes business management researches by the best teams from across the U.S., regardless of its name “Hitotsubashi,” Hitotsubashi Business Review is a nationwide journal open to everyone who aims to improve business management intelligence. This intention is demonstrated in the selection of the editorial board members. The name Hitotsubashi here is not simply a proper name of a university but an icon of the only bridge linking business practice and theoretical research.

The 21st century is indeed an age of management. Differences in business performance across companies are widening even among players of the same industry. Any company, even those in low-tech industries, can transform itself into a highly profitable business by utilizing new technologies and innovative ideas. Moreover, challenges to business management stemming from global issues such as climate change and surging prices of resources call for innovation in various fields ranging from technology to operational efficiency. Innovation, however, does not happen by simply modelling on the practices of other developed countries or following the instructions of the government. Each organization needs to make their own strategical decisions to counter these challenges and transform itself by challenging and trying to change the conditions that may seem invariable. For any organization, including companies and governments, survival through innovation can only be realized by leveraging the collective knowledge and strengths of the entire organization under the leadership of the management.

In this sense, business managers are required to improve the level of their business intelligence. There are two meanings to the term business intelligence. One is the ability to collect information and the other is the intellectual ability of knowledge creation. The purpose of Hitotsubashi Business Review focuses on the latter, to support knowledge creation.

Hundreds of business magazines that offer short-sighted information and knowhow are issued on a daily or weekly basis. In contrast, Hitotsubashi Business Review is issued only four times a year. This is because we want the readers to take plenty of time (three months!) to thoroughly read the papers published on each issue.

We hold our aspirations high, but there may be times when such aspirations wither or fade in the face of actual reality of journal operation. We trust our readers and authors from across Japan to provide frank opinions and criticism to keep our spirits high.

Hitotsubashi Business Review Editorial Board