UNLABELLED Hepatocytes possess a remarkable capacity to regenerate and reconstitute the parenchyma after liver damage. However, in the case of chronic injury, their proliferative potential is impaired and hepatic progenitor cells (HPCs) are activated, resulting in a ductular reaction known as oval cell response. Proapoptotic and survival signals maintain a precise balance to spare hepatocytes and progenitors from hyperplasia and cell death during regeneration. Survivin, a member of the family of inhibitor of apoptosis proteins (IAPs), plays key roles in the proliferation and apoptosis of various cell types. Here, we characterized the in vivo function of Survivin in regulating postnatal liver development and homeostasis using mice carrying conditional Survivin alleles. Hepatic perinatal loss of Survivin causes impaired mitosis, increased genome ploidy, and enlarged cell size in postnatal livers, which eventually leads to hepatocyte apoptosis and triggers tissue damage and inflammation. Subsequently, HPCs that retain genomic Survivin alleles are activated, which finally differentiate into hepatocytes and reconstitute the whole liver. By contrast, inducible ablation of Survivin in adult hepatocytes does not affect HPC activation and liver homeostasis during a long-life period. CONCLUSION Perinatal Survivin deletion impairs hepatic mitosis in postnatal liver development, which induces HPC activation and reconstitution in the liver, therefore providing a novel HPC induction model.