AVATAR ROBOT CAFE

Short List
TitleAVATAR ROBOT CAFE
BrandORY LABORATORY
Product / ServiceORIHIME / ORIHIME-D
CategoryF03. Innovation & Solution
EntrantADK CREATIVE ONE Tokyo, JAPAN
Idea Creation ADK CREATIVE ONE Tokyo, JAPAN
PR SUNNY SIDE UP Tokyo, JAPAN
Additional Company ZYX INTERNATIONAL Tokyo, JAPAN
Additional Company 2 ADK MARKETING & SOLUTIONS INC. TOKYO, JAPAN
Additional Company 3 PYGMALION Tokyo, JAPAN

Credits

Name Company Position
Kenshiro Sadaka ADK Creative One Creative Director / Creative Technologist
Yoshihiro Kozuka ADK Creative One Creative Technologist / Creative Futurist
Satoshi Innami ADK Creative One PR Director
Masami Shimamura SUNNY SIDE UP PR Manager
Masaya Uchida SUNNY SIDE UP Media Relations
Taku Kasahara ADK Creative One Art Director
Kei Takimoto ADK Creative One Designer
Mutsumi Hayashida ADK Creative One Creative Producer
Kenta Terada ADK Creative One Production Manager
Sakura Egami ADK Creative One Production Manager
Sho Matsuki Freelance Director
Sho Sato Freelance Photographer
Sho Tominaga Freelance Editor
Chihiro Kato ADK Creative One Activation Producer
Miho Fujioka ADK Creative One Merchandiser
Shodai Kako ADK Creative One Merchandiser
Kosuke Aono ZYX INTERNATIONAL Event Planner
Akihiko Kiyomiya ADK Marketing Solutions Account Executive
Atsushi Hayashi ADK Marketing Solutions Account Executive
Masaru Kataoka Pygmalion Retoucher

Background

There is a potential demand for creating a system where people with disabilities can work permanently and linking it to the societal implementation of the employment of people with disabilities in Japan. Because the employment rate for physically disabled people remains at about 5%, and amidst an outcry about labor shortages, the employment rate of disabled people has not progressed. At the same time, many disabled people have given up on getting a job with a company. We found that there is a glass ceiling for disabled people to participate in society , and decided to challenge for breaking the glass ceiling with technology and innovation. Out objectives of this project are that we pay attention to the insights of people with disabilities that "want the opportunity to contribute to society", and create a system where people with disabilities can work.

Describe the creative idea (40% of vote)

Orihime, a robot avatar that can be controlled remotely has been developed. An AVATAR ROBOT CAFE where people with disabilities remotely controlled robot avatars to wait on tables, opened for three weeks in TOKYO, in order to draw on the insight that disabled people desire opportunities to contribute to society on their own rather than having someone help them. A total of 30 people with disabilities were employed. The robot avatars utilized, have unique interfaces such as eye tracker operation, mouse operation and smartphone input, which can be used by people with any kind of disability. In addition, as a experience design innovation, we conducted process design for 30 pilots in different locations to demonstrate their teamwork. In order to handle the complex customer service, we worked on the placement of the two types of the avatar robots that fulfill the different roles of getting orders and serving the food.

Describe the execution (40% of vote)

First, we recruited people with disabilities who were willing to work and trained a total of 30 disabled persons. The training involved teaching them about cafe service hospitality, as well as how to operate the avatar robot. Next, we called on various companies to support this project and raised 750,000 USD in funding from nine major companies. We also raised 100,000 USD from 554 people via crowdfunding. We then opened the Avatar Robot Cafe in Tokyo, a place where disabled people could work as cafe clerks using their avatar robots. This cafe was able to gather approximately 1,200 people in three weeks. In our survey, 98.9% of the visitors answered that they enjoyed their time in the cafe. 88.3% of the respondents also said that they would like to work with an avatar robot if they would start having trouble going out in the future.

List the results (20% of vote)

This project was covered in more than 500 articles/stories. Media exposure was equivalent of 7.6 million USD.Most important of all, more than 5 handicapped people who participated have been successfully hired by a company after this project. Three weeks of work experience at AVATAR ROBOT CAFE led to my employment with their company. 0.75 million USD in funding from five major companies has been raised for running this project. 0.1 million USD has been raised from 554 people through crowdfunding. The Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare, the Deputy Minister of the Cabinet Office, and the opposition leader visited the cafe and mentioned the avatar robots in the media, which led to major movement for the revision of the law. Kanagawa Prefecture and the Ory Laboratory have signed an agreement to realize the vision of a symbiotic society. Due to the great response, we conducted two additional operations in Shibuya.

Links
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