Rediscovering the Charm of a Town from a Cross-Cultural Perspective

Comparing and analyzing two cities

In our design projects, we value reading information from diverse perspectives and developing new questions. To this end, in addition to researching the subject matter, we also incorporate various perspectives by surveying fields in other industries to look for clues and conducting workshops with experts and researchers from different sectors related to the topics.

In the community development field, it may be difficult to actually go and see what other towns are doing or to interact with people from outside the community due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In this method, residents will rediscover the new attractiveness of their town by comparing it with a foreign counterpart online. In addition, by observing a town with a different culture, the participants will look for tips on how to solve problems in their own.

Community Development, Education, Living Labs

Why Choose CoMADO

  • Discover new attractions in a town from a different cultural perspective
  • Learn the similarities and differences between a town and one in a foreign country, and gain inspiration for solving problems in one’s own town

Suitable for

  • Those implementing community development programs at high schools, universities, etc.
  • Those who are involved in municipalities or NPOs working on local development


You will work with a foreign town (local government or university) to report on and observe each other’s town. In turn, the participants will introduce their town, its culture, activities, residents, etc., and share the challenges they face. Other participants will observe them and record what they find interesting and their opinions on the issues. Finally, participants will reflect on the results of their research in Miro, summarizing the similarities and differences between the two towns and the insights they have gained from each town toward solving the issues they face.

Typical Duration
About 180 min.
Typical # of Participants
About 6 to 10 people
Partner cities (municipality, universities, etc.), CoMADO room, Miro board, internet environment, stabilizer (for presenters), smartphone, PC


  • 01

    1 day

    Preparing to report on the town

    Consider how to share the town and decide the content and flow of the report. Visit the site and conduct a preliminary rehearsal with CoMADO. During the main rehearsal, confirm that the report can be broadcast outdoors without signal interruption. Also, if there are multiple presenters, share the switching timing, etc., in advance.

  • 02

    15 min.

    Greetings and icebreaker

    Confirm the purpose and goals of the program. Introduce yourself as an icebreaker.

  • 03

    50 min.

    My town report and observation, part 1

    The presenter reports on their town. The participants point out things they find interesting and ask questions to the presenter. At the same time, they jot down on sticky notes what they found interesting and attractive in the town, what they were curious about, and any advice they might have.

  • 04

    50 min.

    My town report and observation, part 1

    The other town reports on their town. Follow the same procedure as step 3.

  • 05

    60 min.


    All participants look back on their survey notes on Miro. While sharing their own notes with the other participants, they will identify the characteristics of each town, the similarities and differences between the two towns, and hints on how to solve the problems in each town.


Kahoru Tsukui

津久井 かほる

She is a service designer conducting design research and co-creation workshops for projects in various fields to create new values that enrich not only customers and employees but also society. She is currently studying behavioral design methods to enhance well-being.

Agency: ACTANT, Inc.


This method compares towns in two different countries, but I think interesting discoveries can probably be made by practicing the method in two different towns in the same country. I also believe that the first step, “Preparing to report on the town,” can be an educational program to think about your town and summarize how to communicate with others. I’d even recommend trying to incorporate only this portion into your coursework!

Tips & Tricks

By adding themes such as safety, crafts, and housing to the town reports, you can make more focused observations. It would be interesting to seek the assistance of residents and others to serve as presenters for the reports.

It is also possible to make this a two-day program, spending a little more time on the town reports. Please arrange the program flexibly according to the goals and conditions you wish to implement.

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