III. Future Initiatives of the Japan NPO Center

7. Main Focus of Our Initiatives for the Next Five Years

The Japan NPO Center connects diverse stakeholders to promote dialogue and partnership. We encourage this kind of dialogue to take place in each community because this is an era in which the local community plays a leading role. We support NPOs in responding to changing environments and gaining the trust of diverse stakeholders through their activities. We will also disseminate diverse values that each organization holds to society at large, both in Japan and abroad. To support these efforts, we will conduct research on social issues and the NPO activities that address them, and exchange information with the civil sector in Japan and abroad.

8. Confirmation of Our Core Values

In the report of the Task Force on the Future of the Japan NPO Center issued in 2011, JNPOC set forth the following stances to be constantly aware of in its organizational management and business promotion. These are our core organizational values that we continue to uphold.

  • To be close to those who are excluded and oppressed
  • To value the participation and awareness of citizens
  • To cut into the structure of society while foreseeing the changes of the times
  • To consider the reality of the situation as a starting point
  • To respect diversity and minority opinions
  • To fulfill accountability by disclosing information

9. Our Initiatives for the Next Five Years

Based on what we listed in II. Our Recognition of the Current Situation and the values set forth in our core values, we will focus on the following areas over the next five years.

① Information dissemination

Communication through the Internet has become increasingly important. We will actively disseminate information on local voluntary efforts both in Japan and abroad, and provide opportunities for more people to be exposed to the values expressed by NPOs. We will also actively introduce overseas initiatives to Japan to promote more interactions.

  • Supporting information dissemination so that the efforts of NPOs can reach a wider audience
  • Providing information about the social issues NPOs in Japan address and their activities overseas
  • Introduce information on civil society overseas to Japan

② Consultation and coordination

We promote dialogue and partnership across geographical and thematic areas to facilitate solutions to complex and intertwined social issues.

  • Connecting stakeholders from other sectors to NPOs’ efforts to tackle social problems
  • Creating opportunities for discussion with diverse entities that can become partners in solving social problems
  • Providing accompanying support to individual NPOs with partners such as NPO support organizations, NPO support providers, and companies
  • Supporting NPOs that are trying to transform their organizations and businesses through the use of IT

③ Exchange and training

JNPOC will create opportunities and mechanisms for training and exchange to increase the number of people who take the lead in civil society and to enable sustainable organizational management. In doing so, we will be conscious of the organic use of online and offline resources to maximize their effectiveness.

  • Identifying and training people who can effectively carry out activities to support NPOs, such as staff of NPO support organizations and network organizations, and individuals who provide NPO support
  • Training coordinators who can connect people working in different sectors
  • Creating opportunities for JNPOC members and others involved in building a civil society to interact with each other and share knowledge
  • Providing opportunities for NPO actors to grow within the network so that more NPOs can respond to changing environments with an emphasis on participation

④ Research and policy proposals

We will research and actively disseminate information on social issues and initiatives in Japan, and make policy recommendations on legislation and tax systems in order to create an environment that facilitates the activities of NPOs.

  • Advancing collaboration with academic institutions to promote research and study
  • Undertaking research on domestic social issues in cooperation with various NPOs and disseminate it both domestically and internationally
  • Making policy proposals on NPO-related laws, taxation systems, and other measures to support NPOs
  • Actively engaging in policy proposals to solve social issues, regardless of thematic area

⑤ Networking

We will expand the network of civic activists and their supporters, both in Japan and abroad.

  • Advancing solidarity with civil society around the world and working together on global issues
  • Enhancing networking among NPO supporters, including NPO support organizations, network organizations, and individual NPO supporters
  • Establishing a national network to support the activities of local NPOs in preparation for frequent disasters
  • Creating opportunities for networking among diverse stakeholders in the region

10. State of the Our Organization

In order to realize the points set forth in this vision, we will operate our organization with the following considerations in mind. Although some require a long-term perspective, they are presented here as future-oriented initiatives.

① Securing stable financial resources and aiming for a high percentage of self-financing

  • In addition to aiming for a financial resource structure appropriate for a certified specified nonprofit corporation, we will secure financial resources that will enable us to develop flexible and timely projects.
  • With the decrease in the number of programs to support the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, JNPOC may experience a drop-in income from donations, but we will take this into consideration and examine business plans that can be sustained by membership fees as well as donations.

② Actively reorganizing the organizational structure and promoting business collaboration for effective business promotion

  • We will reorganize our organizational structure by restructuring the ways in which our staff work, as well as the efficiency and effectiveness of our business promotion. We will also consider more efficient designation of tasks and other aspects of our business, and put in place a structure at the appropriate time.
  • We will carefully examine our business activities and flexibly consider the project structure in order to maximize the outcomes as a network rather than a single organization, including project alliances with other organizations where possible.

③ Promoting the participation of a wide range of people and organizations and fostering effective communication

  • We will maintain the culture of participation that we have cherished and cultivated over the years, and actively create opportunities for dialogue with our members and stakeholders in order to continue to be an organization where diverse people can participate in our activities.
  • In order to realize creative dialogues, our board members and staff will also pursue training to become high-quality communication practitioners.

④ Establishing a mechanism for promoting the participation of board members in projects and actively appointing them

  • We will aim to become a sustainable organization by creating opportunities for board members, who are responsible for management and operation, to make more active business commitments.
  • We will actively promote individuals who are active in their respective fields and regions to become board members based on a set of rules.

⑤ Clarification of staff development guidelines and establishment of specific training mechanisms

  • We will arrange and clarify the method of staff development through both on and off the job training; we will develop and clarify the environment in which staff can improve themselves on a daily basis.
  • We will train staff through a combination of opportunities such as personnel exchange, joint projects with other organizations, training reimbursements, joint training, and interviews.

⑥ Establishing a system for staff’s diverse work styles and effective staff allocation

  • In light of the fact that the activities of JNPOC are spreading across the country and the IT infrastructure is developing rapidly, we will build a mechanism that can guarantee a variety of working styles for our staff members.]
  • In addition to the telecommuting work style that has gained momentum during the response to COVID-19, we will consider securing regional bases (including employment of local personnel) with a view to strengthening our contact with the local community.