Sony & JICA Join Forces To Aid Developing Countries

Together, the organisations will address the challenges in developing countries by sharing technology and expertise.

By Joel Davies -

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Sony Group Corporation (Sony) have signed a memorandum of understanding to enter a comprehensive business cooperation arrangement with the purpose of contributing to addressing challenges in developing countries and achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Based on this memorandum, JICA and Sony will combine their expertise along with sensing and other technologies developed and possessed by the Sony R&D Center to promote collaboration in a variety of areas.

“Based on our Purpose (or reason for being) to ‘fill the world with emotion (or Kando) through the power of creativity and technology,’ Sony is pursuing the business strategy of ‘getting closer to people'”, said Toru Katsumoto, Executive Deputy President, CTO, and R&D Center President, Sony Group Corporation.

“People, society, and the planet must be healthy in order to connect people through Kando. Through this comprehensive business cooperation arrangement, we aim to use the many technologies available at our R&D Center to help contribute to achieving the SDGs, while working closely with JICA to steadily develop each and every step of the process”.

One such area is empirical research with the goal of contributing to achieving the SDGs. Sony’s sensing and other technologies will be utilized in conducting empirical research in developing countries supported by JICA, with the aim of contributing to areas such as preventing environmental destruction, detecting signs of natural disasters such as river flooding and forest fires, and improving agricultural and livestock production.

JICA have a long history of working on projects to aid developing nations such as the one pictured above in Jordan, where an agro-industrial park was created. Image: JICA.

The two organisations will work together to promote innovation in contributing to resolving social issues with Sony providing data acquired by using its sensing devices free of charge to startups in developing countries supported by JICA in order to promote innovation and help solve social issues.

Together, they will also promote the understanding of the SDGs and encouragement of human resources development in developing countries. This includes drive educational activities on the SDGs, Sony providing internship opportunities for international students supported by JICA and dispatching employees to provide technical guidance at universities supported by JICA.

Junichi Yamada, Senior Vice President, Japan International Cooperation Agency, stated, “JICA has succeeded in ensuring security for people and providing high quality growth in accordance with the Government of Japan’s Development Cooperation Charter. While working with our partners, we will take the lead in forging bonds of trust across the world, aspiring for a free, peaceful and prosperous world where people can hope for a better future and explore their diverse potentials.

“Through this comprehensive business cooperation arrangement with Sony, we will bring together Sony’s strengths in sensing and other technologies with JICA’s local networks and experience in development cooperation, as the two organizations promote co-creation”.

You can find more information about the memorandum of understanding to enter into comprehensive business cooperation between JICA and Sony on the organisations’ respective websites.

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