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Revitalizing Tokyo's Business District with Data from Multiple Industries (Part 2)

Main visual : Revitalizing Tokyo's Business District with Data from Multiple Industries (Part 2)

(Continued from Part 1.)
Following the talks by each speaker, Fujitsu's Atsushi Matsuki moderated a panel discussion among all four; this is the topic of Part 2.

Photo : (Facilitator) Atsushi Matsuki Senior Manager Global Strategy Planning Department, Strategic Promotion Management Division Global Marketing Unit Fujitsu Limited

(Facilitator)
Atsushi Matsuki
Senior Manager
Global Strategy Planning Department, Strategic Promotion Management Division
Global Marketing Unit
Fujitsu Limited

Few Opportunities for Different Industries to Share Data and Co-Create in a Flat Structure

To begin, could you describe how the OMY Data Utilization Project started?

Sano Marunouchi is an extremely dense urban area with a wide range of activity, so it produces a large volume of data. Mitsubishi Estate understood that as a developer operating in the area, we could gather data very easily. Nevertheless, we felt that we were not fully utilizing this data.

Recently, the news has carried stories about Japan's declining population and how GAFA and other companies work across industry boundaries. Mitsubishi Estate currently generates revenue through rent, though no one can tell what the future may bring in this regard. With this in mind, Mitsubishi Estate has adopted the fundamental mindset that data utilization will be at the core of our future innovation, which led to launching this project.

New Value from the OMY Data Utilization Project

Where did you face challenges when launching the project?

Okuyama It was tough to assemble the first group of project participants. I would generally approach company representatives with an offer to share data and analyze it in interesting ways. In many cases, the representative would then discuss the matter internally and later respond that the company could not provide any data.

Ikeda Some parts of the launch involved a process of trial and error, but all participants remained eager up to the end, which was great to see. The fact that everyone could share data under a single framework based on Data Jackets was very significant for the project. Everyone maintained a strong sense of trust, which enabled the project to get off the starting line despite beginning in the manner of an experiment.

Sano Mitsubishi Estate greatly benefited by joining this project. It was a considerable feat in itself for 12 organizations to create something while staying motivated, holding very frequent, deep discussions over an extended period. What's more, all participants actually shared their data with other companies to facilitate analysis and to make new combinations. This was one of the project's extremely worthwhile outcomes.

Ikeda Fujitsu also reaped many rewards by participating. The solutions for data distribution and utilization served as the starting point for our activities. We joined this project thinking that Data Jackets would make it easier for companies to provide data, and in fact we were able to gather a lot of data, delighting us to see our hypothesis be proven true. Many people with completely different areas of expertise came together for each discussion, offering different viewpoints and obtaining new insights. This process too was extremely productive.

Areas for Further Improvement: Reflecting on the OMY Project

As you worked on the project, where did you feel a need to make refinements?

Okuyama It is common to hear about the merits of sharing data, such as that companies with different backgrounds can share data to identify novel trends that they would not have found independently. However, the reality is not so simple. Companies do not collect data for the purpose of sharing it in a project such as this, so you end up with data having different levels of granularity. If you have data taken at one-minute intervals, for example, there is little to be gained from combining it with data taken at one-month intervals. There are still many areas that require more work in terms of facilitating data utilization.

Sano I think that we could have produced a real success story if we had just a bit more time. Also, in terms of granularity, it is unrealistic to collect all data at a fine-grained level. Hopefully, going forward we will find a new approach by discussing this topic.

Sasaki Mitsubishi Estate and Fujitsu may have joined this project with slightly different views on the definition of success. Mitsubishi Estate sees success as sending customers to commercial facilities or increasing sales. Meanwhile, Fujitsu understands success to be different industries helping each other create value or sending customers to one another. I talked to many participants after the project ended, and some expressed their desire to have something to take away as a case study, even if it was small. In this way, I realized the importance of keeping everyone on the same page regarding what they want to achieve.

Aiming for Future Co-Creation Using Data from Many More Participating Companies

This project finished in December 2018, but what does the future hold?

Sano This was the first phase of the project, and we conducted a trial run. Ideally, the next step will focus on something concrete and perhaps smaller in scale so that participants can collaborate with prospects for creating new services or businesses. I hope that participating companies can offer new data based on this mindset.

Sasaki I think that personal data has value as a potential approach. When the idea of an information bank ultimately takes shape in the future, customers may be reluctant about letting organizations use data that can identify them. Considering the necessity of handling personal data sensitively, this type of data may be one key to success.

Finally, I would like to return to the idea of achieving some kind of tangible success, however small. I imagine that it may take more time to fully flesh out a specific approach, but could you give me some examples of potential goals at the conceptual level?

Sasaki One possible avenue is for companies to send customers to each other. As you can see from the data on the flow of people, Tokyo Station is an extremely important location. Since people often move from the station to the Marunouchi area, we envision commercial facilities and hotels in the vicinity collaborating and sharing customers with JR. We could start by collecting and analyzing the data needed to achieve such an alliance, and then develop this concept to function at the real-life operational level.

Going forward, Fujitsu aims to provide backup support to Mitsubishi Estate, and we will contribute to solving a wide range of social issues. Thank you for taking the time to talk with us today.

Speakers

Photo : Hiroshi Sano General Manager, Open Innovation Promotion Office Area Brand Management Department Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd.

Hiroshi Sano
General Manager, Open Innovation Promotion Office
Area Brand Management Department
Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd.

Photo : Hiroyuki Okuyama Senior Manager, Open Innovation Promotion Office Area Brand Management Department Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd.

Hiroyuki Okuyama
Senior Manager, Open Innovation Promotion Office
Area Brand Management Department
Mitsubishi Estate Co., Ltd.

Photo : Hiromichi Sasaki Vice President Service Business Division Network Solutions Business Unit Fujitsu Limited

Hiromichi Sasaki
Vice President
Area Brand Management Department
Service Business Division
Network Solutions Business Unit
Fujitsu Limited

Photo : Eiji Ikeda Senior Manager, LCM Service Department, Service Business Division Network Solutions Business Unit Fujitsu Limited

Eiji Ikeda
Senior Manager, LCM Service Department, Service Business Division
Network Solutions Business Unit
Fujitsu Limited

Photo : (Facilitator) Atsushi Matsuki Senior Manager Global Strategy Planning Department, Strategic Promotion Management Division Global Marketing Unit Fujitsu Limited

(Facilitator)
Atsushi Matsuki
Senior Manager
Global Strategy Planning Department, Strategic Promotion Management
Division
Global Marketing Unit
Fujitsu Limited