About the Editors
Koichi Shimokawa is a leading authority on the automobile industry. He is a professor in the Faculty of Business Administration at Tokai Gakuen University and a professor emeritus at Hosei University. Shimokawa was a member of Hosei University’s Faculty of Business Administration from 1969 to 1999, and he previously taught at the University of Toyama. He holds a doctorate in economics from Kyushu University and studied at the Harvard Business School for two years in the late 1970s. Shimokawa’s research on the automobile industry centers on supply-chain management in a global context, on e-business models, on cross-border alliances and mergers, and on issues and opportunities in emerging markets. Shimokawa has authored and coauthored numerous books, including Ushinawareta Junen [Japan’s Lost Decade] (Tokyo: Chuko Shinsho, 2006); Joho Kakumei to Jidosha Ryutu Inobeshon [The Information Revolution and Innovation in Automobile Distribution] (Tokyo: Bunshindo, 2000), with Takao Iwasawa; The Japanese Automobile Industry: A Business History (London: Athlone Press, 1994); and Transforming Automobile Assembly (Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1997), with Takahiro Fujimoto and Ulrich Juergens.
Takahiro Fujimoto has been a professor in the University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Economics since 1998 and has headed the university’s Manufacturing Management Research Center since 2003. A 1979 graduate of the University of Tokyo, Fujimoto earned a doctorate in economics from the Harvard Business School in 1989 and subsequently worked at Harvard as a researcher, as a visiting professor (1996–97), and as a senior research associate (1997). He has served as a visiting professor at the University of Lyon and as a visiting researcher at INSEAD. Fujimoto’s research centers on technology and operations management and on business administration. Among the books by Fujimoto are Product Development Performance: Strategy, Organization, and Management in the World Auto Industry (Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 1991), with Kim Clark; The Evolution of a Manufacturing System at Toyota (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999); and Competing to Be Really, Really Good (Tokyo: I-House Press, 2007).
About the Translators
Waku Miller works as a writer and translator in Japan, where he has lived for 30 years. He has handled the Japanese-to-English translation of several books, including Takahiro Fujimoto’s Competing to Be Really, Really Good. He is translating selections from the Buddhist monk Eihei Dogen’s Shobogenzo [Insight] and is writing a biography of the Bizen potter Anjin Abe.
John Shook worked for Toyota for 11 years, starting in 1983, and became the first non-Asian to work his way up through the company’s ranks to a management position in Japan. His work at Toyota included creating training materials for the company’s first vehicle-manufacturing operation in North America. John has authored the lean classic Learning to See (Cambridge: Lean Enterprise Institute, 1999), with Mike Rother; Managing to Learn (Cambridge: Lean Enterprise Institute, 2008); and Kaizen Express (Cambridge: Lean Enterprise Institute, 2009), with Toshiko Narusawa. In 2010 John succeeded Jim Womack as the CEO of Lean Enterprise Institute.