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Digital Business & Innovation Major

Your creativity meets technology

Introducing a new major at TIU - Digital Business & Innovation. learn the latest digital technologies and develop the skills needed for true innovation in the business world.

Words from Digital Business & Innovation faculty


Jay Rajasekera | Vice President of TIU - Professor of Digital Business and Strategy

When you are walking downtown along Main Street, you will see many stores and shops lining the sidewalks. The origin of each and every one of these shops came from a dream of the owner before it became the business it is today. Entrepreneurial Business stems from a simple idea. One could, for example, think of the needs in a local community and start a bread shop. Another, tempted by new technologies of the modern era, may expand an existing local organic food business by taking it online. Though these businesses usually belong to Small and Medium Enterprises or SMEs; they could also be called startups if the idea or its launch is completely new. The idea of entrepreneurship is nothing new. From the time humans invented money, people found new ways to create wealth by becoming entrepreneurial. This concept struck me during my first job at Bell Laboratories shortly after I finished my PhD. Bell Labs, owned by US telecom company AT&T, was a premier research institution home to many prolific researchers, including several Nobel Prize winners. Be that as it may, on many occasions my friends and colleagues left the Labs to start their own businesses. For example, one left to build a successful Japanese restaurant chain, and even the start of Silicon Valley can be traced back to a Nobel Prize-winning inventor who left Bell Labs to set up his own business in California. Even though I left to become an academic, I took some time off from my teaching to learn fashion design in Italy, and started my own online jewelry business. My business grew quickly with the rise of the Internet, but in the end I decided to sell it to focus on my academic calling. Though starting up an entrepreneurial business is a great idea, to make it a reality requires considerable planning, resources (including money), and close attention to financial and marketing details. Some of these businesses make it big, or are bought by other big businesses for huge sums of money, such as Instagram. Started by just two people, Instagram was bought by Facebook for US$1 billion just 2 years after its launch. Statistically, more than 50 percent of all startups fizzle out within 5 to 10 years. What this means is that one needs to be strategic to get a startup or an entrepreneurial business to succeed, sustain successfully, and grow. This module on Entrepreneurial Business has been created after careful observation that many young students aspire to start their own businesses. Courses are comprised of practical class work, case discussions, business simulations, and presentations. While the module has a particular focus on entrepreneurship, students have the opportunity to learn how to align ideas with the fast emerging digital revolution as well, which has been sparking start-ups and young entrepreneurs in every country at an unprecedented rate. Those who lack fundamental skills in mathematics, statistics, and economics also have the opportunity to learn these essential skills. These new DBI Major allow students plenty of courses to choose from, and to become confident to enter the vibrant world of entrepreneurial business. With TIU campuses located close to central Tokyo, possibilities even exist for students to try out their own entrepreneur or start-up ideas while studying! Unleash your true potential and creativity through Entrepreneurial Business!


Nora Sharkasi | Associate Professor of Digital Marketing, Data Analytics and Entrepreneurship

We used to start our mornings with a sip from our coffee cups, but these days, we start them smart with our mobile phones. We are more connected than ever before, thanks to the rapid advancements in hardware and software platforms. IT Business is at the heart of this connectivity, where new facets like Digital Marketing are becoming major players in the success or failure of modern businesses. Essentially, this is simply marketing different business offerings like products and services using digital technologies to deliver a superior customer experience. Smartphone adoption rates have been phenomenal across the world to the extent that in many markets there are now more smartphone business interactions than desktop in key sectors such as retail, financial services, and travel. Consumer and business adoption of digital media, social networks, and technology is moving at unprecedented speeds. I have always been on a quest for knowledge and interested in learning novel things. My passion for Digital Marketing and IT Business started during my undergraduate studies when my focus was on building e-commerce websites and coding. However, at that time, there were no specialized majors in Digital Marketing (DM), so I combined multiple degrees in related fields as well as pursued research on virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) to fill the gaps. Later, I chose to study marketing analytics in Japan because it's the hottest destination for DM! There are very few businesses today that aren't using a range of digital marketing practices to compete as they seek growth. At the Adobe Symposium 2018, held in Tokyo, a presenter from SKY, a British media and telecommunications company, shared his experience in implementing digital marketing and analytics to offer a superior customer experience, and assured us that despite the fact that none of the SKY team members have a computer science degree, they were still able to apply advanced artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to grow and achieve their goals. The majority of digital media interactions between consumers and businesses are now mediated through a number of platforms. Thus, it is important for marketers to understand the fundamental best practices for using these platforms in their campaigns to achieve digital marketing excellence. TIU offers globally competitive concentration modules in Entrepreneurship, IT Business / Digital Marketing, and Analytics in one degree, making it the only program of its kind in Japan. Offered completely in English, the program covers topics ranging from social media and search engine optimization, online advertising, big data, and analytics, to virtual and augmented reality, as well as courses covering breakthroughs in blockchain technologies and the Internet-of-things. Students will also benefit from practical courses in state-of-the-art computer labs allowing you to gain practical experience with the actual tools used by professionals. With TIU campuses located close to central Tokyo, the internship opportunities in the IT Business realm available to TIU students are unparalleled. This is the perfect opportunity to learn practical skills that will lead you to a successful career!

Concentration Modules

This major is separated into six separate "concentration modules" that encompass the most essential paths of business and economics. As of April 2018, TIU is offering new courses in IT and Entrepreneurial Business through these unique collection of courses to instill students with the practical skills necessary to thrive on the global stage. Click the modules below to see a correlating list of courses and their descriptions.

Digital Business Management
Learn overall global business in order to understand success factors, including case studies of major Japanese corporations and startup companies.
Entrepreneurship & Business Innovation
Learn hands on know-how and practice innovation with the help of on campus state of the art labs in order to materialize your creativity.
Digital Transformation and Tech Innovation
Digital technologies - IoT, AI plus more - are changing the world; learn how to tap into and utilize them to make new businesses.
AI & Deep Learning
Today data is the most valuable asset. Data science and analytical skills are essential for any kind of future business.
Digital Finance & Fintech
Digital innovations run through finance and banking industries. Obtain knowledge within the field of digital money, and digital banking.
Digital Marketing & Analytics
Digital marketing is at the core of online business. Lean SNS marketing and how to use Virtual reality and Augmented Reality for digital marketing.

* A full list of courses in the Digital Business & Innovations major can be found here.