The dawn of a new age in Japan

Japanese conglomerate SoftBank’s humanoid robot Pepper
Japan has typically been strong in robotics but it also wants to focus on innovation in other scientific fields like big data. Pictured: SoftBank’s humanoid robot Pepper (source: dpa)
  • Japan tends to make social and economic advancements in huge leaps, and it is due for a new one
  • The country wants to focus on life sciences, IoT, robotics, AI and big data.
  • Cultural factors make it likely to succeed

Japan’s socioeconomic and cultural development tends to happen in leaps and bounds. Today, the country is once again at the dawn of a new age: the transformation of life sciences, the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), robotics and big data.

Japan’s track record in these areas has been mixed, with a traditional strength in robotics but weaknesses in AI and big data. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has made them a focus of his economic agenda, and they will all benefit from cross-fertilization. Cultural factors unique to Japan should also play an important role in developing these technologies, giving the country several advantages over its competitors.

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