April 16, 2021
1. Outline of the Local IoT Acceleration Labs project
With the advent of IoT, big data and AI, industries and society across the world are facing significant changes. In response to this situation, it is necessary for Japan to create new IoT business models, discover and develop IoT platform creators, and use them as a driving force for new growth.
In this context, METI and the IPA have been engaging in efforts to select initiatives for creating IoT projects within regions as Local IoT Acceleration Labs. Through this project, they have been assisting regions by granting a license for use of an official logo, conveying information on winners to members of the IoT Acceleration Labs (e.g., through sending email newsletters and holding lab events), and dispatching mentors to encourage the implementation and development of regional projects and ventures.
METI and the IPA started a call for applicants in 2016 and have selected 101 regions in total so far under the Local IoT Acceleration Labs project (29 winners in the first selection in July 2016; 24 in the second in March 2017; 21 in the third in August 2017; 19 in the fourth in September 2018; and eight in the fifth in September 2019).
2. Sixth selection of applicants under the Local IoT Acceleration Labs project
The applications filed by February 26 (Fri.), 2021 were examined by METI and the IPA through interviews to confirm details of their initiatives. As a result, the following four regions have been selected as winners in the sixth selection under the Local IoT Acceleration Labs project, in accordance with the three criteria, namely [i] regional characteristics, [ii] positive and continued involvement by the municipality, and [iii] diversity and solidarity.
Four selected regions
Toyama City, Toyama Prefecture; Kuwana City, Mie Prefecture; Tsuyama City, Okayama Prefecture; and Niihama City, Ehime Prefecture