Updated on August 29, 2018
In fiscal 2017, the Sony Group contributed approximately 2.3 billion yen*1 to community engagement initiatives. By category, approximately 50% of the expenditure went to supporting education, including science education. The next highest areas of expenditure went to contributing to local communities and emergency disaster relief, notably for the Mexico earthquake in September 2017.
By region, approximately 44% of the total expenditure was in Japan, followed by 26% in the United States and 16% in the Mainland China and Hong Kong region.
The Sony Science Program offers programs and workshops for children to encourage the next generation to gain skills in applying the power of science to make the world a better place. Sony held approximately 90 workshops in fiscal 2017, giving more than 3,000 children the opportunity to create crafts and make inventions with Sony products and services. Also in fiscal 2017, Sony’s hands-on science museums in Tokyo and Beijing, called Sony ExploraScience, attracted some 260,000 visitors.*1 Sony also partnered with a non-profit organization to launch a new initiative to bring science workshops to elementary schools in remote regions and organize after-school activity classes.
Sony recognizes the urgency of the global refugee crisis and is working to raise awareness. In addition to being a corporate sponsor of the UNHCR Refugee Film Festival since 2007, Sony holds workshops and events to raise awareness of the refugee crisis among Sony Group employees. In fiscal 2017, Sony engaged in initiatives to raise employee awareness of the refugee crisis through sporting events.
Sony Group companies and affiliates outside of Japan are engaged in diverse education initiatives. Sony (China) Limited has been implementing the Sony Dream Classroom project since 2013, which donates school supplies and classroom equipment such as projectors to elementary and junior high schools in communities across China. The program also conducts science workshops in classrooms, with more than 90,000 children having participated in more than 80 cities and communities in China.
Sony India Pvt. Ltd. cooperates with a local NGO to operate the Hole in the Wall program, which has installed computer learning stations for children in some 40 impoverished and agricultural communities in India. The computer learning stations are programmed with software for learning mathematics and English.
The Sony Australia Foundation funds a program to assist teenagers and young adults who are battling cancer. This demographic falls between the children’s and adult’s hospital systems and tends to receive insufficient social care, which causes isolation. In some cases, they do not receive sufficient medical treatment targeting their special needs, and this is reflected in the lower survival rates compared to other age groups. The Sony Australia Foundation is funding and building You Can Centres in hospitals around Australia for young people to provide hubs for accessing support services and connecting with others who are also battling cancer. Centres are open in Perth and Melbourne.
Sony held a charity online auction in December 2017 which raised 6.88 million yen from the sale of 11 limited-edition aibo robotic dogs. Sony also donated 4.06 million yen, raising a total of 10.94 million yen in funds for the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), supporting the conservation of nature and rare wild species.
In March 2018, Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. held the two-day event “VR CAMP with PlayStation®VR in Waseda,” partnering with Life is Tech!, which offers educational programming sessions for junior and senior high school students. The camp was also supported by the laboratory of Professor Takashi Kawai of the Department of Intermedia Art and Science, School of Fundamental Science and Engineering, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University. It took place at the Nishiwaseda Campus of Waseda University. Thirty-six students attended and created their own virtual reality game for PlayStation®VR using the Unity game engine.
Sony Pictures Television Networks launched a global campaign, The Picture This Festival for the Planet, a contest that engaged filmmakers and change-makers from more than 70 countries, who created short films to share their unique vision of a sustainable future for people and the planet. The campaign is one of the ways that Sony is raising awareness of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in partnership with the United Nations Foundation.