As the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games approach, numbers of foreign tourists visiting Japan are expected to rise, bringing major economic benefits to the nation. Aside from economic gain, however, the vitalization of outlying regions is an important goal of tourism, and approaches incorporating this goal have become increasingly central to the industry.

The focus this contest is national parks, which serve as vital tourism resources for Japan. Contestants will be asked to predict numbers of lodging guests for lodging facilities near national parks.

Currently, the national government is carrying out the "Project to Fully Enjoy National Parks," a concrete measure aimed at revitalizing the nation's tourism industry. As of World Economic Forum 2017, Japan is ranked 26th on the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI) in terms of natural resources, and in order to increase the country's global standing as a tourist destination the government has selected eight prominent national parks as targets for increased information dissemination and PR, improvements to user environments, increases in available activities, improvements to basic park facilities, and other such efforts as part of regional revitalization measures centered on national parks.

Explanation of Contestant Task

Each contest participant will create a model for predicting lodging guest numbers from the next day onward based on data received on lodging guest numbers up until the previous day. Toward this end, contestants will be permitted to use approved data from the previous day or earlier.

Predictions will be made for lodging guest numbers at lodging facilities near the following eight (8) parks for the period from January 1 to December 31, 2017.
・Akan-Mashu National Park
・Towada-Hachimantai National Park
・Nikko National Park
・Ise-Shima National Park
・Daisen-Oki National Park
・Aso-Kuju National Park
・Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park
・Keramashoto National Park

Data Provision

・Social networking service data (Hotto Link Inc.)
・Social networking service data including location information (Nightley Inc.)
・Mesh-type population fluidity data (Agoop Corp.)
・Public transit schedule search log data (Jorudan Co., Ltd.)
・Aggregate data on visitor numbers by country and month (COLOPL, Inc.)
・Meteorological data (Japan Meteorological Agency)
・Weather observation data on snowfall (National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Resilience)
In addition, each contest participant can use the data from Regional Economy and Society Analyzing System (RESAS), which is offered by Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and Japan Cabinet Secretariat.


1st prize: free trip to a national park of the winner's choice (travel for two)
2nd and 3rd prizes: free trip to Ise-Shima National Park and lunch at Ebiya (travel and dining for two)

Notes Regarding Prize Trips
・The lodging facility must be chosen from a list of options comprising facilities that have contracts with JTB Corp. and have availability during the travel period.
・Trips are for two-day, one-night stays. Participants may add additional days at their own expense, in which case transportation arrangements can be changed.
・Travelers must choose Sapporo, Tokyo, Osaka or Fukuoka as their departure/return point.
・The trip return date must be on or before March 31, 2019.
・Additional details and conditions will be finalized following prize-winner selection.

This contest is carried out under the Industrial Data Sharing Promotion Project Subsidy, which is part of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) FY 2017 supplementary budget.

Evaluation Function
・Mean absolute error (MAE) will be used to evaluate prediction accuracy.
・An evaluation value of zero (0) or higher will be provided. The higher the accuracy, the lower (closer to 0) the value will be.
・Numbers of lodging guests for each area will be used as objective variables.

Scoring and Ranking of Contestants
1.Provisional contestant scorings will be determined based on evaluation of select evaluation-use data sets and carried out up until the contest's final day. Final scorings will be determined after the contest has ended, using the remaining evaluation-use data sets. (The leaderboard display will automatically change from running scores to final evaluation scores once the contest has ended, and final contestant rankings will be shown at this time. There may be large differences between in-contest running results and post-contest final rankings.)

2.Regarding evaluation-based rankings, the contestant who applied first for participation in the contest will be ranked higher in the case of an identical (tied) score.

3.The following are required to carry out contestant ranking:
・Prediction model source code
・Learning-complete model
・Procedure description document enabling reproduction of the prediction process (must clearly explain preprocessing, learning, and prediction processes)
・Computer/equipment operating environment information, including OS version, software utilized and analysis methods
・Random number seed (if Random Forest or similar was used to generate random numbers)
・Degree of prediction model contribution for all explanatory variables (when using a method that enables calculation of degree of prediction)
・Insights gained through data interpretation, manipulation and modeling

4.During the reproducibility evaluation period, the contestant will be disqualified from award eligibility in any of the following cases:
・The contestant does not respond within the specified timeframe to contact from, or a request/demand from, the contest administrative office regarding contest-related procedures
・The contestant fails to adhere to participant requirements, rules, etc.
・The model's prediction results cannot be reproduced
・The contestant's approach cannot be used for prediction during periods outside of the contest-use data period

Terms of Participation
・Participants in the Competition must assent to the Terms of Participation.
・Data to be provided for the Competition can only be used for the purposes of the Competition.
・All data provided for the Competition must be erased after the Competition has ended.

Readiness of Mind
・Participants should take part in the Competition with a utility-focused approach to meet the major purposes of achieving corporate challenges, resolving social problems and otherwise sharing research results.

System Utilization
・Each person will be permitted to utilize no more than one account. More than one person can participate in the Competition as a team, provided that all members of the team will only be required to use a single account. (The team will designate a representative from among its members and post analytical results via the account of such representative.)
 1.All members of the team must sign up to SIGNATE as users.
 2.The representative of the team will send his/her own email address, as well as those of all members of the team via the Inquiry Form.

Handling of Information
・A participant will be prohibited from sharing data and source codes for predictions relevant to the Competition with participants other than the members of the same team.

Utilization of Data
・If a participant predicts the number of overnight visitors on a given day, he or she can use any information that has become available prior to that day.
・A participant can use monthly data, provided that such data has become available prior to the month which includes the date of prediction.
・Open and free data available to everyone that would not infringe any third party’s rights may be used for predictions as external data.
・Notwithstanding the above, no participant can obtain or utilize data from or on the Sightseeing Forecast platform.
・Please pay attention to the last update date of data when external data is used.

Method of Implementation
・Tools that will be utilized to learn models will be limited to those that are open and free (e.g., python and R).
・A source code should be divided into “preprocess,” “train” and “predict” and be implemented as each is executed for processing.
  A module to read the data provided, preprocess the data and output a file in a condition that is ready to input something into a model. Please define the functions to be preprocessed by dividing them between the functions for the use of learning and those for the use of testing, such as get_train_data and get_test_data.
  A module to read the file created in (1) above and learn the model. Please also define the functions to output learnt models, feature values and tested results for cross-validation.
  A module to read the test data created in (1) above and the model created in (2) above, and output prediction results as a file.

Contest Sponsor
Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI)

Tourism Forecast Platform

JTB Corporation

Data Providers
Hotto Link Inc.
Nightley Inc.
Jorudan Co., Ltd.
Agoop Corp.
Wire and Wireless Co., Ltd.
Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)
National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Resilience (NIED)

Disclosure policy

As a general rule, in accordance with Article 4, Paragraph 1 of the terms of participation, diclosing any contents such as insights and deliverables transmitted through the information or data provided by our company in relation to this competition is not permitted, however, only after the completion of this competition and for non-commercial purposes, it will be possible to disclose the contents within the score of the table below
Model *1
Analysis results *2
Public : Posting to social media sites, blogs and source repositories, and citing to papers
Restricted : Using in a limited range from research, education to seminars, where many unspecified people cannot access
*1 Execution unit source code and learned models
*2 The insights obtained using the information and data provided, or the solutions including scripts and processed data such as summary statistics

In order to participate in the Competition, you are required to agree to these Terms, in addition to the Terms of Use of SIGNATE.JP Site (hereinafter referred to as the “Terms of Use”). You should participate in the Competition after reading carefully and agreeing to these Terms. If you agree, these Terms, the matters that are added to these Terms as "additional matters", the Terms of Use and other terms and conditions that you have agreed to shall be binding on the relevant parties as integral documents.

Article 1. Definitions

1.For the purpose of these Terms, the following terms shall be defined as follows:

(1)"Site" means the website "SIGNATE (https://signate.jp)” on which the Competitions are posted.
(2)"Competition" means any competition on AI development or data analysis on the Site as held by the Host.
(3)"Host" is the host(s) of the Competitions. The Host may be SIGNATE, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as the “Company”) or the Company’s client companies, affiliated companies, schools or organizations, etc. (hereinafter referred to as the “Client(s)”).
(4)"Participant(s)" means the member(s) who participate in a Competition.
(5)"Submissions" means, collectively, the analysis and prediction results and reports, etc. as submitted in the Competition.
(6)"Final Submissions" means the Submissions that are specified by a Participant on the prescribed page in the Site by the time of completion of a Competition.
(7)"Winner Candidate" means the Participant who has received a notice from the Company that he/she is nominated as a winner candidate.
(8)"Submissions for Final Judgment" means the analysis and prediction model and learning data, etc. as submitted by a Winner Candidate pursuant to the instructions of the Company.
(9)"Final Judgment" means the acceptance inspection and judgment, including reproducibility verification, by the Company for the Final Submissions and Submissions for Final Judgment of a Winner Candidate.
(10)"Winner" means the Winner Candidate who is informed by the Company that he/she has won a prize.
2.Unless otherwise defined in these Terms, the terms used in these Terms that are defined in the Terms of Use shall have the same meaning as defined in the Terms of Use.

Article 2. Competition

1.A member who desires to participate in a Competition shall be required to agree to these Terms and to satisfy the conditions for participation as specified in each such Competition. Any person who is not a member shall not participate in any Competition.
2.Participants shall participate in each Competition in the manner as advised by the Company and shall be obligated to comply with the rules as prescribed in each Competition.
3.Participants may submit the Submissions for the assignment of each Competition during the period of such Competition and submit a proposal on the method of solving the problem to the Host by the end of the period of the said Competition.
4.Participants may submit the Final Submissions in the form specified in each Competition by the time specified by the said Competition.
5.The Final Submissions as submitted shall be evaluated by the evaluation method as specified in each Competition and the final rank order shall be determined based on such evaluation.
6.Any Participant may, as a general rule, check the evaluation results of the Participant him/herself and each of the other Participants on the Site for the Submissions that may be evaluated quantitatively.
7.Participants shall be liable or otherwise responsible for their own Submissions, including their legality.
8.Participants shall not submit any Submissions that have no direct relationship to each Competition.
9.Unless otherwise provided for, Participants shall not directly communicate to, consult with, make a request to, solicit or take any other actions with the Host in respect of the matters related to a Competition during the period of the said Competition.
10.Any Participant who has uncertainty or questions about any Competition shall make sure to contact the Company or its designee through the procedures prescribed by the Company as posted on the Site.
11.The Company shall not be obligated to pay any remuneration or other consideration other than those prescribed in the following Article for any act of the Participants as prescribed in paragraphs hereof.

Article 3 Reward and Vesting of Rights

1.Unless otherwise provided for, any Participant shall satisfy the following requirements in order to be entitled to receive a reward in any Competition that offers a reward:

(1)To be a winner;
(2)To agree to transfer to the Host and the relevant transferee of rights in such Competition all transferable rights, such as copyrights, rights to obtain patents and know-how, etc. in and to all analysis and prediction results, reports, analysis and prediction model, algorithm, source code and documentations for the model reproducibility, etc., and the Submissions contained in the Final Submissions and Submissions for Final Judgment (including the rights as prescribed in Article 27 and Article 28 of the Copyright Act and the rights to obtain patents; hereinafter referred to as the "Rights");
(3)To agree that any relevant transferee of rights exclusively has the right to use the know-how contained in the Final Submissions and Submissions for Final Judgment for its own business and other purpose without any restriction;
(4)To agree not to exercise moral rights to the Rights against the relevant transferee of rights;
(5)To enter into an agreement for the transfer of the Rights with the relevant eligible transferee of rights, including the agreement to the matter in the preceding three (3) items and other reasonable provisions;
(6)To have the personal identity of such Participant verified by the Company.
(7)Not to breach any provision of these Terms and the Terms of Use.

2.Any Winner Candidate shall, after having received a notice from the Company that he/she is nominated as a winner candidate, submit the Submissions for Final Judgment on or before the designated date and communicate the matters requiring confirmation or response in relation to the Final Submissions and the Submissions for Final Judgment to the Company on or before the designated date, in accordance with the instructions of the Company. The Company shall carry out the final judgment based on such matters requiring confirmation or response. If the Company receives no confirmation or response satisfactory to the Company on or before the designated date, the Company may exclude such Winner Candidate from the subject of the final judgment.
3.If the Company considers that the Final Submissions or Submissions for Final Judgment need to be amended or modified, or there occur any additional matters requiring confirmation, in the course of the final judgment, any Winner Candidate shall take action or make response in relation to the matters that require amendment, etc. or the detailed information on the matters requiring confirmation, on or before the designated date in accordance with the instructions of the Company. If the Company receives no action or response satisfactory to the Company on or before the designated date, the Company may exclude such Winner Candidate from the final judgment.
4.The Company shall determine the Winner through the final judgment and inform the Winner to that effect.

Article 4 Confidentiality

1.Any Participant shall treat any information and data that they receive from the Company in relation to each Competition (hereinafter referred to as the "Company-Provided Information") as confidential information and shall not disclose the same to any third party and use the same for any purpose other than for such Competition and purpose specified by the Company separately; provided, however, that the confidential information shall not include any information that falls under any of the following items:

(1)Information that is known to the public at the time of the disclosure;
(2)Information that is already possessed by the Participant at the time of the disclosure (only in the case where such Participant may demonstrate such fact by reasonable means);
(3)Information that becomes known to the public without the fault of the Participant after the disclosure;
(4)Information that is independently developed by the Participant without reference to any information as disclosed (except for those Submissions of the person eligible for a prize which are evaluated); or
(5)Information that is rightfully disclosed by any third party having a right to do so without the obligations of confidentiality (only in the case where such Participant may demonstrate such fact by reasonable means).

2.Any Participant shall delete or return to the Company the Company-Provided Information immediately after the completion of each Competition.
3.Any Winner shall handle his/her Final Submissions and Submissions for Final Judgment in the same manner as prescribed in paragraph 1 hereof.
4.If there is any separate arrangement in relation to the confidential information in each Competition, the provisions of such arrangement shall prevail over the provisions of these Terms.
5.If any dispute occurs between the Host or other third party and the Company due to the breach by any Participant of the provisions of this Article and such other party makes any claim against the Company, such Participant shall compensate for any damage, loss, expenses (including, but not limited to, attorneys’ fees), lost profits and lost revenues, etc. incurred by the Company.
6.The provisions of this Article shall survive the termination of the relevant Competition or the Participant’s completion of the procedures for withdrawal from the service of the Company, with respect to the Company-Provided Information and the Winner’s Final Submissions and Submissions for Final Judgment for a period of five (5) years thereafter.

Article 5 Prohibited Acts of Participants

1.The Company shall prohibit Participants from engaging in any of the following acts in any Competition:

(1)An act of cracking, cheating, spoofing other misconduct;
(2)An act of directly communicating to, consulting with, making a request to, soliciting or responding to solicitation or other activities to other Participants or the Host (other than the Company) without the involvement of the Company;
(3)Any profitmaking activities using the Competition (including solicitation or scouting activities, and use for a third party in educational business, etc.) without the prior approval of the Company in writing or any other manner specified by the Company;
(4)Transfer, offering as collateral or other disposition of the status as a Participant or the rights or obligations as a Participant (except with the prior written consent of the Company); and
(5)Any other act in breach of the Terms of Use.

2.If the Company deems that a Participant engages in any of the prohibited acts as prescribed in the preceding paragraph, the Company may, without prior notice to the Participant, disqualify the Participant from the Competition in which the Participant participates, temporarily suspend the Participant from using the service of the Company, withdraw the Participant’s membership, claim damages from the Participant or take any other measures deemed necessary by the Company.

Article 6. Change, Discontinuation or Termination of Provision of Services under These Terms

1.The Company may change or temporarily suspend the services provided by the Company under these Terms without prior notice to the members.
2.Upon one (1) month prior notice to the members, the Company may suspend for a long period of time or terminate the services provided by the Company under these Terms.
3.The Company shall not be liable for any results or damage arising from the measures taken by the Company under this Article.

Article 7. Modification of Terms

1.The Company may modify, add or delete any provisions of these Terms from time to time without the approval of the members.

Enforced on April 1, 2018