Algorithms for Love: Japan Will Soon Launch an AI Dating Service – Singularity Hub
Every year for the last 13 years, Japan’s population has shrunk. The country has one of the lowest birth rates in the world, and not enough babies are being born to replace an aging population; Japan also has the highest proportion of people over 65 of any country in the world.
The reasons for the baby bust aren’t totally clear, but some contributing factors could include economic insecurity, women prioritizing their careers over raising a family, and strict immigration standards that let in few potential child-bearing foreigners. In 2019 just 864,000 babies were born in Japan, a 5.9 percent drop from the previous year, which was already a historic low.
And perhaps unsurprisingly, it doesn’t end there; young people in Japan seem to have lost interest not only in babies, but in marriage (marriages fell from 800,000 in 2000 to 600,000 last year), dating, and even sex.
The Japanese government is concerned, to put it lightly, and with good reason—the country’s economy and the well-being of its people are at stake. Last week Japan’s Cabinet Office announced it’s putting 2 billion yen ($19.2 million) towards an initiative it hopes will give a much-needed boost to dating, marriage, sex, and babies: artificially intelligent matchmaking.
If the idea of the government being involved in your love life sounds strange, it’s actually not a new thing in Japan. The country is divided into 47 prefectures—like small states—and about 25 of these already offer some