Dr. Larry Kubota’s work is focused on the fusion of creativity, business, technology and media. At the age of 36, he received a U.S. Presidential appointment as Director of the Policy, Planning and Budget Divisions at the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), which funded the creation of the American Film Institute and the Sundance Institute (in the Twentieth Century, America’s arts was a dominant force worldwide as nurtured by the Endowment). During his tenure, he successfully created the first long-range plan for governmental support of the arts in America in the midst of a crisis and in the face of tremendous opposition.
After the NEA, Dr. Kubota was employed as Director of Multimedia and New Technologies at UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television, and then promoted to Director of Multimedia R&D activities for UCLA’s Chancellor’s office where he worked for the former head of research for Bell Labs. Dr. Kubota was selected as one of 50 top educational leaders in the U.S. working with new media by Stanford University and Lucas Learning, and he was frequently invited to speak in Japan and the USA on new media, including MIT and Harvard’s Spring 2007 symposium on “Cool Japan: Love and War in Japanese Pop Culture.”
In 2001, Dr. Kubota accepted a position as a Chaired Visiting Professor at Hitotsubashi University’s Graduate School of International Strategy, and then as a Visiting Professor at Hitotsubashi’s Institute of Innovation Research. During that time he was also a personal consultant to the President of Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan, as well as President and founder of a digital production company in Japan in partnership with one of the original team members at George Lucas’ ILM. Now, as a tenured professor in Global Media Studies at Komazawa University in Tokyo, Dr. Kubota’s interests have focused on global “transvergence” — how cultures are encountering one another and forming entirely new species through digital media technologies. He and his students and other faculty at the university, along with Harvard University, are currently developing a digital platform to capture and convey Japan’s youth culture to the world that is to be replicated worldwide. In November 2012, he organized a Symposium on “Transvergence in the Arts and Media” in Tokyo, sponsored by the Ishibashi Foundation, focusing on reinventing the museum for the 21st Century. Dr. Kubota received his BS and MBA degrees from the University of Southern California (USC), and his Doctorate in Education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.