I received a Rakuten Technology Award

On Nov.21, 2015 – At Rakuten Technology Conference 2015, I received a prestigous “Rakuten Technology Award” for my contributions to Agile software development evangelism in Japan and in the world.

It says…

Implementing agile development, supporting agile communities and bridging the gap between Japan and the rest of the world is very important for the advancement of society. Mr. Kenji Hiranabe has long devoted his time and efforts to do all these many, many years. He co-authored a book with Ikujiro Nonaka which has greatly influenced many people in this area of development. Mr.Hiranabe’s long-standing contributions in the software industry in Japan are widely recognized by everyone. We honor him for his achievements.

On Nov.21, 2015

Hiroshi Mikitani
and Chief Executive Officer
Rakuten Inc.

Wow! thank you, Mikitani -san!!

I’d like to share this award with the Agile communities in Japan. I started a first extreme programming community in Japan(XP-jp) in 2000 and since then I have spent so much time in translating Agile books, telling people about it, holding events where people can come and talk about it.

My motivation was to eliminate all those death march projects where engineers are always tired, managers are angry and customers are unhappy. To get back better “Quality of Life” in the professionalism as an engineer in this real software development world.

I also share this with Kawaguchi-san at Rakuten. One of my best memories of the activities during the years was to have helped him to organize this GREAT idea to  invite Jeff Sutherland – the father of Scrum to Japan, and set up a conference “Innovation Sprint 2011” to meet Ikujiro Nonaka – the grandfather of Scrum. I remember the two giants talked to each other just right here at this stage and I translated their languages!

Jeff(father of Scrum) and Nonaka(grandfather of Scrum) At Innovation Sprint 2011

The concept of “Scrum” is originally from Japan’s new product development in the 80s, which is later referred to by Jeff  Sutherland as a model of cross-functional, self-organizing teams in the Agile software development context.

Thank you again Rakuten conference team for this wonderful award and supporting such a great event!

And thank you for the photo Yoshioka-san. I also felt your big passion to promote younger-generation engineers in this carrier in the “lightening talks” event held former to this ceremony,  it was beautiful.

Here’s the press release from Rakuten;


Also, in the former Rakuten Technology Conference 2011, Shintaro Kakutani, fellow of Eiwa System Management, and Nawoto Nishimura, an alumni of Eiwa System Management, had received the Ruby award.


Glad we have been contributing to Agile and Ruby communities in Japan!


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