- Society 5.0 isa vision proposed by the Japanese government for a future societybased on the Internet of Things (IoT). It refers to the next stage of social evolution, the previous stages being hunter-gatherer, agrarian, industrial and information societies. Its aim is to realize a super-smart society in which everyone in the world, regardless of age or gender,will be able to benefit by using the IoT in an effective way. It is a clear departure from conventional industrial policies focusing only on the development and reinforcement of individual companies or specific industries such as manufacturing and telecommunications.
- Both Germany and Japan possess strength in the manufacturing field and share similar industrial foundations. Pioneering work has already started under collaboration between German and Japanese firms, examples of whichwere introduced during this run of Japan Summit. From the Japanese side, presentations were made by Cyberdyne, a venture firm creating robot suits, and Fanuc, anindustrial robotmaker, and rom the German side, SAP, anenterprise software company, and VOITH, an industrial technological groupofferinga diverse range of products and services.
- It is expected that this trend will expand beyond just a certain portion of companies to encompass society as a whole. Start-ups in particularare able to move quickly and have abundant ideas. They also have potential to play a leading role in the IoT age. It is also expected that collaboration between large companies and small and medium-sized enterprises will be urged internationally.In order to realizean IoT society, solving various issues, including those regarding technologies and social acceptance, is indispensable. Furthermore, data circulation must not be bound to within company groups, as has been conventional, but must flow outward as well.
- The unrestricted flow of information beyond borders is a key ingredient toeconomic growth. The IoT will play a facilitating role in distributing data beyond borders and industries, which will open up new realms of cooperation in the pursuit of creating innovation. Securing cybersecurity and protecting privacy rights should also be respected for this purpose.
Through Japan Summit, Japan displayed its enthusiastic stance toward realizing a future IoT society by forging partnerships with Germany and the rest of the world and utilizing its unique technologies, ideas and originality.
With the aim of facilitating international collaboration, a memorandum of cooperation related to the IoT was concluded during this even tbetween the IoT Acceleration Consortium(*1); which consists of participants from Japanese industry, academia and government; on one sideand the Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation（AIOTI）(*2), which is based in Europeand consists of members of Industrie 4.0 and participants from telecommunication carriers, on the other.
（*1）The IoT Acceleration Consortium aims to combine the strengths of government, industry and academia and build a structure for developing and demonstrating technologies related to the promotion of the IoT as well as creating and facilitating new business models. The consortium promotes (1) the development, demonstration and standardization for IoT-related technologies and (2) creation of various IoT-related projects and recommendations necessary to run those projects, such as regulatory reform.
（*2）The Alliance for Internet of Things Innovation (AIOTI) was initiated by the European Commission in order to develop and support dialogue and interaction among the Europe's various IoT players.
March 20, 2017
Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)