Calling for ideas that will boldly change (transform, convert, update, and expand) the way we look at wood!

Results WED, NOV 18, 2020 - MON, FEB 15, 2021

Calling for the transformative ideas to change how we look at wood

We are looking for ideas from Japan and abroad for unprecedented experiences, communicative tools and uses of Japanese wood. Entries can take any form, including concept images, videos, prototypes as well as products, service, and community activities which have not entered the market. We hope that the creators' imagination will yield ideas that will boldly change (transform, convert, update, expand) the way we look at Japanese wood.


About 70% of Japanese land area is forest, and about half of these forests were planted by people after the war. Half of the planted forests are more than 50 years old and now entering a period of use.

What is needed to keep the forests in Japan healthy for a long time is for people to repeat the cycle of "harvest ,use, plant and grow" these planted forests. In other words, the "use" of the Japanese wood is an important driving force to keep this cycle going.

What can we do to use the Japanese wood, which is now an abundant resource in Japan?

This project takes a creative approach to the expansion of the Japanese wood usage and endeavors to change (transform, convert, update, expand) the appeal and visibility of the Japanese wood and the "view of wood". No special wood processing skills or expertise are required. We are looking for ideas not only from creators who are already using wood in their work, but also from those who are eclectic about wood and forests and would like to use it in the future.

Efforts to use the Japanese wood in buildings, products, and other specialized approaches have been made in the past. However, there is still room to expand the use of the Japanese wood.

There are two major ways to try to do this.

Enter the WOULD CHANGE AWARD here, or participate in the WOULD CHANGE CAMP.
You can try one or both!
※Please note that WOULD CHANGE CAMP is intended for people living in Japan.


The WOULD CHANGE AWARD on this page calls for a wide range of ideas from Japan and abroad, including unpublished works, prototypes, concept sketches, and services as of the end of February 2021. We are collecting ideas that combine the Japanese wood with creativity and a free-spirited approach that "would change" things so much.

Many people are probably still indifferent to the Japanese wood. But the small gaze and awareness of each person can cause a change and lead to the solution of big issues. We are looking forward to seeing the Would Change ideas that would start the story between wood and human society.


The "WOULD CHANGE CAMP" is a 3-day, 2-night input and ideation camp in Hida Japan.
Teams of mentors, wood experts, and publicly solicited creators with different perspectives and visions will be formed at the camp to refine the output of their ideas.
Publicly solicited creators do not need to have any experience or track record in woodworking, as long as they feel some potential and motivation in the Japanese wood.
Participating creators will be judged and selected based on the ideas submitted regarding the use of the Japanese wood currently in circulation.

※Please note that WOULD CHANGE CAMP is intended for people living in Japan.

Click here for WOULD CHANGE CAMP(Japanese webpage)

Application themes and targets

【Application Theme】

Ideas to change the way we look at wood


We are looking for the following three ideas.

  1. "#MATERIALITY" to change the way we utilize the characteristics of wood ... call for "product" ideas
  2. "#ACTIVITY" to change the relationship between wood and people ... call for "services and frameworks" ideas
  3. "#STORYTELLING" to change the impression of using wood ... call for "communication" ideas

Take a look at the example ideas→

【Application targets】

Ideas for communication/products/services and frameworks that lead to greater use and new uses of the Japanese wood

*Any category is acceptable. Unimplemented activities, projects and performances are also welcome!
*Please note that ideas that have been commercialized as of the end of February 2021 are not eligible for submission. Ideas that have not yet been commercialized and have already been published on your portfolio site, etc. are eligible for submission. In addition, online services and activities, both planned and pre-launch, are eligible as of the end of February 2021, as long as they are not yet implemented or operational.


  • November 18, 2020 (Wednesday) - February 15, 2021 (Monday): Submission period
  • March 5, 2021 (Friday) : Award Ceremony
  • March 5, 2021 (Friday) - March 18 (Thursday) : Exhibition of winning ideas at DAIKANYAMA TSUTAYA BOOKS in Tokyo (tentative

Benefits of Participation

  • Display of award-winning works at DAIKANYAMA TSUTAYA BOOKS in Tokyo (tentative)
  • Media exposure (tentative)
  • Dissemination of information through Loftwork's various channels (, MTRL, FabCafe, AWRD)
  • Participation in the creator network of Loftwork, Inc.
  • Networking with participating creators of the WOULD CHANGE CHALLENGE
  • Opportunities to connect with the wood industry in Japan

*As there is a limit to the size and number of works that can be displayed at DAIKANYAMA TSUTAYA BOOKS in Tokyo, we will make a final decision on whether or not to display the works at DAIKANYAMA TSUTAYA BOOKS in Tokyo, and depending on the content, we plan to show the images/video on a tablet device.

Recommended for...

  • Creators/designers who actually wanted to try confronting wood
  • Those who want the challenge of designing from meaning and significance
  • Planners, graphic designers, programmers, etc.

Judging Criteria

  • Unexpectedness:Whether it is an unexpected perspective or approach that makes us say “Wow”!
  • Scalability:Whether it expands the value and use of the Japanese wood and people's ordinary and extraordinary lives
  • Emotions:Is it an idea with an edgy point of view to create a moving experience?
  • Believability:Whether it is possible or feasible to realize



Masaki Sugiyama, Ph. D

Team Leader, Department of Wood Properties and Processing, Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute (FFPRI)

Graduated from the Division of Wood Science, Graduate School of Agriculture (Master Course), Kyoto University in 1995. His research areas are wood physics and living environment. Engaged in research on amenity of wood and wooden living spaces, properties and processing of domestically early-grown trees, and distribution and usage of wood for furniture and interiors in Japan. He is concurrently serving as Adjunct Associate Professor at Graduate School of Bioresources, Mie University.

Message from the Director of Wood Utilization Division, Forestry Agency,Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries,Japan

About 70% of the Japanese land area is forest. About 40% of the forests is planted forests. Half of the planted forests is more than 50 years old and now entering a period of use. In order to sustainably secure the fulfillment of the multiple functions of forests, it is very important to maintain these planted forests in a cycle of "harvest ,use, plant and grow".

We hope that the young generation, who will be responsible for Japan's future, will use the Japanese wood with new ideas and become more connected to forests.

Through the "WOULD CHANGE CHALLENGE," we hope that creators will come up with new ideas for the use of and possibilities for the Japanese wood that have not existed before, and that you feel that the use of the Japanese wood is cool, fun, and good for the environment.

The organization of the project

  • Organizer:Loftwork
  • Sponsorship:Japan Federation of Wood-Industry Association
  • Support:FY 2020 supplementary budget of Forestry Agency, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Japan

About the Prize(s)

  • GOLD x 1 idea

  • SILVER x 1 idea

  • BRONZE x 1 idea

  • Pickup Prize


Support, Sponsorship





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