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Atsushi Sakahara

Creative Information Philosopher

Leaving Footprints Where There Are No Paths

I believe it may be difficult for others to understand as I have walked a pathless path. If I were to describe myself, I would say I am a creative information philosopher. Here, I will share my experiences, including who I have met and what influences I have received. I hope this helps you understand what I aim to impart to the talented young entrepreneurs and their ventures.

During my time as a student preparing for entrance exams, I learned "Hegel's Dialectic" from an ethics lecturer and "How to Learn Economics by Reading the Dictionary of Economics" from a political economy lecturer at Sundai Preparatory School Kyoto.

While in the liberal arts faculty at Kyoto University, I studied "Theories of Genius" by educational scholar Masao Kodera. In the Faculty of Economics at Kyoto University, I specialized in game theory and human resource management engineering in Professor Hideshi Ito's seminar.

Around that time, I met economist Paul Milgrom (who won the Nobel Prize in 2020) and developed a close friendship with him.


I also formed a student exchange group with American exchange students from the Stanford Japan Center/KCJS, which was established through the efforts of economist Masahiko Aoki. Among these exchange students were the two future founders of Yahoo, including Jerry Yang and his wife, Akiko Yamazaki, who also participated in Ito's seminar. Hollywood film director David Greenspan, with whom I made a Palme d'Or-winning film at the Cannes Film Festival, and Emmy Award-winning journalist Trisha Sorrells Doyle, both became our company's advisors. I also met serial entrepreneur Gerrit van Wyngaarden, who now lives in Seattle.

During the summer vacation of my third year at university, I studied abroad at Columbia University in the United States, where I met Taiwanese politician Sean Lien and developed a close friendship.


After graduating from Kyoto University in 1993, I joined Dentsu Inc. and was assigned to the marketing department. At Dentsu Inc., I was contemporaries with Takuma Takasaki, who later scripted and produced the Oscar-nominated "Perfect Days," and Hironobu Tanaka, founder of Hironobu & Co.

I was on the train during the Tokyo subway sarin gas attack, narrowly escaping by being in close proximity to the leaking sarin. I survived and left Dentsu Inc. in 1995.


Around that time, I met Taiichiro Usami, a management consultant mentored by Konosuke Matsushita (7th-term student at the Matsushita Institute of Government and Management), and became an executive in his management consulting company. I also met Shuzo Yoshimura, the chief priest of Ryōzenji, the first temple of the Shikoku pilgrimage.

Before entering Kyoto University, I had met and helped Rabbi Ronald Hoffberg during a visit to Kyoto, establishing a lasting friendship. I later spent a year with him in New Jersey, deepening my understanding of Judaism through practical experience.


I also studied asynchronous creative collaboration possibilities at MetaNet, an internet consulting company led by Frank Burns, an advisor to Vice President Al Gore's Internet Superhighway initiative, for a year.

In 1998, I interned at Venture Access, a venture information consulting company led by Shigeya Ando, before enrolling in the MBA program at the University of California, Berkeley.


During the summer vacation of 1999, I participated as a producer in the short film "Bean Cake," a USC film school graduation project, which won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.


During my second year of the MBA, I joined the startup Minds and Technologies, Inc. (Palo Alto).


After graduating in 2000, I became full-time but later transferred to Ordinate Corporation, led by Brent Townsend, an investor known for his invention of 56K modem signal processing, where I handled business development for a fully automated spoken English test using AI and voice recognition technology. The president was linguist Jared Bernstein. During a research stay at Stanford University's Center for the Study of Language and Information, educational linguist Yasuya Harada (director of the Information and Education Research Institute at Waseda University) was met.


In 2001, after "Bean Cake" won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, I returned to Japan. I collaborated with Gerrit van Wyngaarden to develop and commercialize a flashcard app for mobile phones. In 2002, I got married but was later informed that my spouse had once been associated with Aum Shinrikyo. We divorced in 2004, and I shut down the flashcard app business.


I joined the management advisory company Kishi & Associates, led by my friend and former Goldman Sachs investment banker Nobuhisa Kishi. The chairman was former Dentsu Inc. vice president Nobuo Momose.


I also met legendary management consultant Seiichiro Yahagi, who was hired during the early days of BCG at the Boston headquarters, and received personal coaching in management consulting techniques.

I managed to revitalize a computer-based tutoring franchise and support the spin-off of ATRCALL as an individual.


I also served as a director of the RSC, a health examination group for sarin attack victims.

I opened a private school to teach management and English learning to Waseda University students.


I met Mitsuru Kaneko and joined the NPO Digital Content Institute, developing and lecturing in an educational program for content industry professionals called "Content Strategy." I also met Roger Christiansen, director of "Friends" and "Hannah Montana."

I reviewed all the philosophy books on the open shelves of Waseda University's central library while independently researching structuralist-based narrative theory.


I attended a series of lectures on "The Encyclopedia School" by the renowned Hegel philosopher Hiroshi Hasegawa at Tokyo Tech.


Due to health issues, I consulted with Shuzo Yoshimura, who advised me to take a year-long pilgrimage photography trip around Shikoku. During this journey, I assisted in PR activities for the Shikoku pilgrimage at an event in Tokyo Marunouchi. I collapsed on a flight back to Tokyo and was hospitalized with an unknown cause of lumbar compression fracture. I returned to my family's home in Kyoto with a corset.

I sought to systematize my worldview and authored "Revised Introduction to Social Principles - Basic Fundamentals That Do Not Change" (dZERO).


I began teaching film production in the drama and film production course at Broadcasting Arts College.


In 2014, I started producing the documentary "AGANAI: My Life with the Tokyo Subway Sarin Attack" to confront the sarin attack.


I teach English at Kyoto Seika University and published my original creative technique SA Method in the Value Engineering Association magazine. I also taught English for economics at the Faculty of Economics at Osaka City University.

"AGANAI: My Life with the Tokyo Subway Sarin Attack" was completed and won the Grand Prix at EDIF2021. The film received worldwide acclaim, achieving a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes' Tomato Meter.


I started researching the SA Method in the doctoral program at Utsunomiya University's Graduate School of Regional Development Science. I became a member of the PEN Club and published a paper on the SA Method in IEEE.


I published the novel "Peanut a Day" (Shueisha Bunko).


In 2023, the sarin attack victims' association, which I represent, was featured on the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department's website. I am preparing to screen "AGANAI: My Life with the Tokyo Subway Sarin Attack" in high schools nationwide and use half of my personal income to support other victims.


After completing my personal response to the sarin attack, I met second-year Osaka City University economics student Kaho Fujikawa and co-founded LOGIGLISH Inc., an English learning support consulting company. Utilizing my knowledge and network, I have started various new businesses at LOGIGLISH Inc.

増補 社会原理序説 ―それでも変わらない根本的なこと
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