Dr. Kawashima declines $22 million in Brain Age royalties

If you’ve ever played Brain Age, you’ve been well acquainted with Dr. Ryuta Kawashima’s blocky, stoic face. What you may not know, however, is how much money the man has turned down as a result of the game’s success.

With 17 million copies of Brain Age sold worldwide since its release, Dr. Kawashima is due to earn $22 million (2.4 billion yen) in royalties. Surprisingly, he’s refused to accept a single penny for himself.

"Not a single yen has gone in my pocket," said the soft-spoken 48-year-old doctor with round-rim glasses. "Everyone in my family is mad at me but I tell them that if they want money, go out and earn it."

According to the rules of Tohoku University, which employs Kawashima, he could accept half of the royalties as long as the remaining half is given to the school. The man is wholly dedicated to his research and work, though, and has never even entertained the notion of accepting the royalties for his ‘hard work’. "To hear this may put you off — but my hobby is work," he told AFP.

While he hasn’t accepted a penny in royalties, Kawashima has used (so far) a small portion of the money from them to develop further research and fund other projects. He has built a 300-million-yen laboratory at the university’s Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer where he works, and another lab is due to be completed next month at the cost of 400 million yen.

Despite his selflessness, Kawashima understands that for some people, money is an important issue. According to him, other researchers have the right to earn money from their work if that is what motivates them. For him, though, his research and yearly salary of roughly $100,000 are more than enough.


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Author: Brendon Lindsey View all posts by

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