Sansan “Dawn of Innovation”

Visualization of Business Card Exchange Data



Dawn of Innovation is a data visualization installation for a project from Sansan DSOC’s collaborative research platform Sansan Data Discovery. Aimed at boosting innovation in the Japanese economy, this installation visualizes daily corporate-level human interactions based on data from business card exchanges between companies. In addition to data analysis by Sansan DSOC and sound design by Jemapur, Qosmo was in charge of implementing the actual data visualization and technical execution.

Japan has yet to free itself from its prolonged economic recession in a period often called the ”lost three decades.” However, recent research based on the Economic Complexity Index, an indicator of economic growth, has shown Japan is the world’s leading country in terms of growth potential.

Dawn of Innovation is a thought-provoking interpretation of between-company encounters. It aims to inspire innovation through data visualization. The installation experimented with this encounter-based mechanism, hoping to foster innovation that can help to finally end Japan’s economic malaise.

As preprocessing, tens of thousands of companies are classified into multiple clusters based on business card exchange data. The business card exchanges across clusters, which show connections between companies in different fields, signal the start of innovation.

The installation represents interactions and collaborations that may have emerged from seemingly unrelated connections across industries. The business card exchange pattern that changes from day to day in accordance with the season and day of the week lets the viewer feel the pulsation of the Japanese economy.




  • Data Analysis

    Takanori Nishida (Sansan DSOC)

  • Technical Direction

    Nao Tokui (Qosmo, Inc.)

  • Visual Programming

    Shoya Dozono (Qosmo, Inc.)

  • Sound Design


  • Creative Direction

    Yoshiki Ishikawa (Habitech, Inc.), Sho Izumo (Habitech, Inc.), Naoto Yamawaki (Sansan DSOC)

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