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Japan and Britain: Isles of Innovation

Japan and Britain have enjoyed an intertwined relationship over the past two centuries. Leading experts from both countries come together to explore the past, present and future relations between these two powerful industrial countries.

Ever since the 1868 political revolution in Japan under Emperor Meiji, the country’s technological, industrial and scientific expansion has been extremely fast. While Japan has undergone huge transformation, Britain has played an integral role, with British engineers laying the nation’s first railways and telegraph lines 150 years ago, and huge numbers of students relocating from Japan to study in British universities.

This close partnership and exchange of ideas and expertise continues to this day, and an ongoing alliance is key to help tackle the numerous tough challenges—environmental, economic and political—facing the modern world.

Join us for a unique afternoon, coinciding with the Japan-Britain Season of Culture, featuring talks and panel discussions with the following speakers:

  • Sir Neil Cossons—historian and expert in British industrial heritage, and former director of the Science Museum
  • Koko Kato—Managing Director, National Congress of Industrial Heritage, Japan
  • Tim Harding—Japan and Korea Market Specialist, Department for International Trade
  • Simon SharpeHead of Climate Change Strategy, Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

More speakers will be announced closer to the date of the event.


Please note: welcome tea, coffee and refreshments will be served. All attendees are also invited for drinks and refreshments in Illuminate following the panel discussion, from 15.45–16.45.

Please also note that as this is a free entry event we anticipate some audience drop-out. Our standard practice for events such as this is to make more tickets available than there are seats. We anticipate that we will be able to accommodate everyone that attends on the night but to guarantee entry, please arrive early and note that entry is on a first come, first served basis.