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Late last month, the Diet passed a revised bill paving the way for so-called “super cities” or “smart cities.” Supporters tout them as high-tech marvels where artificial intelligence and big data are to be used to provide more efficient and cost-effective solutions to social problems, especially in areas faced with aging and declining populations and a reduced tax base. Opponents warn that data leaks could lead to privacy violations and even a surveillance state. Here’s a look at Japan’s Super City Initiative.

What was the purpose of the recently passed bill?

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