Primary industries and the tourism industry outside of the major cities face a challenging time currently as a number of negative issues are at work: an aging population, fewer people joining these industries, decline in population, and a workforce that is drifting more towards the tertiary industries.
In a day and age in which more and more business models are digitized, the use of digital technology in primary industries is still very limited. And it is said that the utilization of digital technology in Japan’s tourism industry is over a decade behind the times. Conversely, this means that there is that much more of an opportunity to enhance the use of digital technology.
In collaboration with industries and technologies that support the lives of people, Dentsu Isobar is launching KUMU, a business innovation project for the purpose of creating new areas of business.
The project name KUMU comes from the Japanese verb kumu, which means to partner with – as in to partner with others, to partner with culture, to partner with tradition... This will lead to the creation of new communication, culture, and business. KUMU is instilled with the meaning of partnership and creation.
In this first installment, the city of Ishinomaki in Miyagi prefecture will be the location for an ideathon that seeks to invigorate primary industries and the tourist industry. The event will be held in collaboration with two organizations. One is LeapMind, Inc. (main office in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo; CEO Soichi Matsuda), a company that has applied deep-learning technology to construct its own image identification system. The other is Itonabu-Ishinomaki (located in Ishinomaki-shi, Miyagi-ken; headed by Takayuki Koyama), a general corporate judicial entity that serves as a base for the learning of software development and web design in order to provide opportunities to the next generation of youth who are the very future of Ishinomaki.
Marketing planners, art directors, designers, and engineers from each company will divide into three teams (with seven members to a team) in order to take part in the idea competition.
What separates this event from the standard ideathon is that the program is integrated with a component in which participants do actual work in the field. The planning will be based on an understanding of the essential nature of problems by making sure that situations in and feedback from the field inform the process.
On the final day when the ideas are submitted for judging, each team will give a presentation of 30 minutes. The plan is to use the idea of the winning team for development with the intention of actual utilization.
We hope that KUMU is a vehicle for contributing to the invigoration of industries that support the lives of people outside of the big cities in a process that involves the continual implementation of effective ideas.
Click here for enquiries about KUMU.