Shunji Yamanaka

Shunji Yamanaka is the founder and president of Leading Edge Design in Tokyo.

Award-winning industrial designer Shunji Yamanaka graduated from the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Tokyo. After working for Nissan Motor's Design Centre and serving as an associate professor at the University of Tokyo, he established Leading Edge Design in 1994.

While having designed a number of industrial products like the Nissan Infiniti Q45, Olympus Camera "O-product", OXO Good Grips tools, and Issey Miyake watches, Yamanaka continues to pursue the newest research and development in scientific fields. He has released prototypes that have attracted international attention, including the humanoid robot Morph3, the thumb-operated keyboard Tagtype and the Halluc II, an eight-wheeled robotic vehicle.

Yamanaka and Leading Edge Design have won the following awards:

  • NFINITI Q45: Good Design, MITI,  Japan, 1989
  • Ecru: Selected in the Innovative Design in Germany, 1992
  • Tagtype: iF Product Design Award, Germany, 2001
  • NTT DoCoMo OnQ: Good Design Award, 2004 / iF Product Design Award, Germany, 2005
  • OXO Daikon Grator: Good Design Award Gold Prize, 2006
  • Aimulet LA: Good Design Award Ecology Design Prize, 2006
  • Mainichi Design Award, the Designer of the Year in Japan 2004