【Report】 The 45th AJI Frontier Seminar was held! Dr. ZHANG Jiahao presented his research on a policy model for the local economic developments.

The 45th AJI Frontier Seminar took place online on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022. Dr. ZHANG Jiahao, a Senior Researcher at Asia-Japan Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University, gave a presentation in English entitled “Evaluating the Potential of Regional Attributes to Attract New Talent: An Application of Conjoint Analysis on Graduates, Entrepreneurs and Tourists” in which he explained the results of his research on evaluating a region’s potential for economic growth.

In order to find a regions’ potential, Dr. Zhang selected three groups estimated to contribute the most to future development, graduates, entrepreneurs, and tourists. He then employed a traditional form of conjoint analysis to rank attributes that would make the region appealing to these three groups. In order to select attributes for use in the main experiment using methodology, a large number of attributes need to be sent in a questionnaire to correspondents for evaluation and the data must then be put in order. As this is very time consuming he employed Baidu big data for his analysis (no. of searches or clicks) to rank and select the highest for use in main experiment.

Dr. Zhang demonstrated that through the analysis of the questionnaire data, urban water environment is the most important environmental attribute for graduates, residents' per capita deposits and the scale of government funding are of great significance to small and medium-sized businessowners and large business owners, respectively, and policies formulated through the analysis of tourists' social media activity can effectively improve the shopping experience of tourists. He explained that this conclusion can be used to help inform the spending decisions of regional or city governments to optimize the most crucial attributes.

An enthusiastic Q&A session followed in which Dr. Zhang answered questions about why he had chosen these three sector, why he had used such a large sample for his pretest survey, and why he had used conjoint analysis when other simpler methods of analysis exist. He explained that adopting this methodology had helped him to conduct the experiment more easily and save considerable time. All the participants learned useful lessons from his fascinating presentation.

Dr. Zhang presenting his research