Bringing together the wisdom of the world for the further advancement of mid-rise and high-rise wooden buildings

KIMIHIRO HashimotoChair of the JIBH International Exchange Committee
and Advisor to the JIBH

Interview date: July 26, 2021

Sharing overseas knowledge with Japan,
sharing the various technology of
Japanese wooden building construction with the world
The Japan International Association for the Industry of Building and Housing, or JIBH, promotes friendship and goodwill by collecting information and interpersonal exchange with the aim of contributing to the advancement of the building and housing industry throughout the world. It coordinates with member companies and related government offices as it forges deeper ties with related countries through the activities of its committees. I believe that one of the fruits of its efforts as a unified organization is attracting WOODRISE, an international congress for the promotion and advancement of mid-rise and high-rise wooden buildings, to Japan.
Japan is an earthquake-prone country with many densely packed urban areas, so there are strong and valid regulations on wooden buildings. However, overseas, wooden building construction is developing remarkably, and the field is flourishing. It isn't unusual to see 18 or 20 story high wooden buildings. Japan has relaxed restrictions while developing new technologies, but if we wish to build wooden buildings that reach the bar set overseas, we will need to gain an even deeper knowledge of buildings and housing around the world. WOODRISE 2021 KYOTO will present a tremendous and invaluable opportunity to do just that.
The wooden buildings of Japan, such as the Horyuji Temple, have long been of great interest to people around the world. As a member of the industry, I believe that we can contribute globally by sharing the high quality of Japanese buildings and housing through WOODRISE 2021 KYOTO. Interest in wooden building construction is growing worldwide not only in the West but also in countries such as China. I am confident that WOODRISE 2021 KYOTO will also aid JIBH member companies in their overseas expansion efforts.
Networking connects people worldwide
through wooden buildings
I am personally looking forward to meeting and talking with participants from overseas at the congress. With the meaning of developing ongoing personal networks and deepening a greater sense of far-ranging unity, bringing people with a shared interest in wooden building construction together around the world is the significance of WOODRISE 2021 KYOTO.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the congress will be held using a hybrid meeting model in which participants will be able to participate online. Parts of the program will also be held through on-demand streaming. Furthermore, in case overseas participants feel difficult to arrive in Japan, parts of the program will be carried out separately in 2022. The congress will foster exchange and interchange through global sessions, B-to-B meetings, technical tours, and more. It will provide an opportunity to learn about the international standards of technologies and academic findings without leaving Japan, and because some programs are free of charge, this event will be open to a wide range of participants, such as students and members of the community. It will become a precious opportunity for participants to reach world-class knowledge and trends, especially now, mobility is limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Creating spaces which offer healthier and
securer lives with greater peace of mind
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives drastically. More and more companies have introduced work-from-home and teleworking systems, and this is further elevating the importance of housing, which forms the foundations of our lives. Academic research has found that living in wooden buildings provides people with mental stability. There are deep ties between wooden buildings and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that people around the world are striving to achieve—wood is a highly sustainable material. Because the idea that wooden buildings provide people with greater peace of mind and contribute to healthier lives has become well-established in many areas, I believe it is time for Japan to take another look at wooden buildings. Gathering building and housing experts from around the world to share their wisdom at an international event like WOODRISE 2021 KYOTO will, I am sure, have a major impact on the future of our industry. From a long-term perspective, I hope that this event has a multifaceted on people's lives and careers.