Yamagata City, Japan

2017 challenge

Tourism is an important pillar of Japan’s economic growth strategy. The city of Yamagata is home to numerous hot springs, Buddhist temples, and Mt. Zao ski resort, yet the percentage of annual visitors they get has not increased. Mayor Sato has taken the lead to develop the Yamagata Wide Area Tourism Council to increase tourism and employment opportunities in the region. He is asking IBM to help develop a roadmap to market the city to foreign visitors and increase tourism through analysis of data.