Across Japan there are 95 local railways, many of which are now struggling to survive. The aging population, a declining birth rate, an increase in motorists and the poor financial situation of local governments have made things difficult for the railway industry. In addition, the impact of the coronavirus is taking its toll. Now, local railways are reexamining the significance of their role in local communities, and how best to work with these communities and local governments to ensure their survival. Join us as we take a look at case studies from previous episodes, and talk to a researcher from a major think tank that has been researching ways to improve local railways nationwide.