Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan around Designing Future Society for Our Lives will be held on the waterfront of Osaka City in Yumeshima, from April 13-October 13 2025. It is expected to attract 28.2 million visitors. Sub-themes of this event are as follows and the main theme is People’s Living Lab:
The theme “Designing Future Society for Our Lives” makes individuals think how they want to live and how they can maximize their potential. It is also intended to drive co-creation by the international community in designing a sustainable society that supports individuals’ ideas of how they want to live. The main aims and objectives of the Expo are as follows:
In other words, the Expo will ask a straightforward question to everyone, “What is the happy way of life?” for the first time. The Expo will correspond to this time when new social challenges, including expanding economic gaps and heightened conflicts, are emerging while science technologies are evolving, including AI and biotechnologies, that will present changes to humankinds, for example, extended life spans.
While values and ways of living have become increasingly diversified in recent years, technological innovations enable everyone to access and communicate a hitherto unimaginable amount of information. Fully considering such progress, Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan, will feature health, medical, and other advanced initiatives, including carbon neutrality4 and digitization, and collect wisdom and the best practices from around the world to provide solutions to various issues with diverse values considered. To clarify the subject of “Life” as the main theme, there are three subthemes as follows:
The concept of Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan, is“ People’s Living Lab.” This concept represents the Expo’s approach toward putting its theme into practice and serves as a guideline for projects to be implemented in this Expo to evolve the Expo’s style into a place for more practical actions. It can be said that the most distinctive characteristic of this Expo will be the endeavor to give a realistic picture of a future society not just through thought but also through action. This endeavor will be being begun before the Expo, by inviting diverse participants to come together with various initiatives (such as health and medical initiatives and initiatives concerning carbon neutrality and digitization) in their respective positions and tackle challenges whose solution will help achieve the SDGs at or outside the Expo venue. Positioning the Expo venue as a laboratory where new technologies and systems will be verified, we will raise it into a huge apparatus that will trigger the creation of innovations by diverse players and apply those innovations to real society.
In this regard, it should be mentioned that the urban living laboratory is a new concept in the field of urban management and planning. An urban laboratory includes a real or virtual space in which the challenges of social life, especially in cities, are examined and analyzed, different solutions are tested, effective solutions are implemented, and appropriate policies are implemented to advance and develop urban services at all levels. The urban living lab is a multidimensional concept that includes many approaches, subjects, and fields of research. Therefore it has diverse stakeholders from municipalities to companies providing solutions and even citizens themselves. The living urban laboratory is a platform where a real, not artificial, and dynamic environment can be created to simulate different models of urban management. In such an environment, it is possible to investigate, evaluate and analyze the mutual and multilateral solutions and feedback of the stakeholders, and the results are extended to increase the efficiency and productivity of various aspects of urban life in other cities. The human living laboratory is a way to achieve sustainability.
Yumeshima Island, on the waterfront of Osaka City
The site for the Expo is located in Yumeshima, an artificial island located on the waterfront in Osaka that offers visitors a view of the Inland Sea. We will promote the Expo as the one connected to the world through the surrounding sea and sky, as well as providing programs taking advantage of the venue’s location. With an area of 1.55 km2, the venue will have a pavilion area in its center, with waters in its southern part and greenery in its western part.
Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan, will comprise three sets of projects: ‘Co-creation with the World’, ‘Theme Practice’, and ‘Future Society Showcase’, which will begin to be implemented at or outside the venue before the Expo. These projects aim to enable visitors and participating businesses and organizations to experience new technologies, services, and systems that will take root in society in the future and work on their own to help achieve the SDGs and make a leap for the SDGs and beyond to cause changes in their thoughts and action after the Expo. In this way, the significance of Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan, also lies in its function as leverage in bringing its own philosophy and achievements as a legacy to the next generation.