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Jonathan Soble
Japan Times
JAPAN / Smart Countryside
Dec 1, 2022
Is it a bus or a taxi? For some small Japanese towns, the answer is both
Hybrid mobility services are helping cater to Japan's older citizens, many of whom live in areas where traditional forms of public transport are lacking.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Smart Countryside
Oct 9, 2022
The city aiming to change perceptions of electronic voting in Japan
Tsukuba, a designated Super City in Ibaraki Prefecture, is hoping its trials of online voting among schoolchildren can be rolled out to municipal polls and beyond.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan / Smart Countryside
Aug 25, 2022
For an aging Osaka suburb, the best 'smart city' innovations are low-key
As a once-thriving 'new town,' Nankadai is now trying to introduce modern initiatives to an aging population who see the area as being akin to the countryside.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan
Jul 12, 2022
Smart countryside: How tech can help revive Japan’s rural regions
Changes in work patterns wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic are already drawing some remote workers to the countryside.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan
Feb 17, 2022
Bringing Japan's public services into the digital age needs a legal revolution
According to some estimates, as many as 60,000 national and local rules need to be revised to make online public services possible.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / World / The Great Reset
Apr 1, 2021
The digital age needs a fresh injection of trust
Rapid social and economic change, deepening political divisions and the impact of technology are stretching the limits of trust-building systems, and governments are struggling to keep up.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / World / The Great Reset
Jan 19, 2021
Trade in personal data is here to stay
Japan is well-placed to be a leader in data trading, but technical hurdles need to be overcome and mindsets need to be changed.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / World / The Great Reset
Nov 22, 2020
The key to reviving international travel
Helping data to cross borders first and setting up a trusted health ID system are key to getting people moving again.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / World / The Great Reset
Sep 29, 2020
Smart cities need smarter governance
Opening up localities to artificial intelligence and big data needs regulation to ensure it gets off the ground.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan / The Great Reset
Aug 2, 2020
It's time to reset Japan's digital infrastructure
Despite its image as a world leader, the nation is falling behind as it continues to make use of outdated technology.
Japan Times
COMMENTARY / Japan / The Great Reset
Jun 29, 2020
How COVID-19 has shown us that society needs resetting
As our reliance on technology is laid bare, countries are faced with questions of what measures they can implement to help them survive.

Longform

The Japanese government updated its English education guidelines in 2017 to emphasize communication over grammar and memorization. Public school teachers are incredibly busy, however, which means schools haven’t been able to implement changes uniformly. Private and alternative schools are attempting to remedy this.
The language of opportunity: Bilingual education is on the rise in Japan