Shanghai has taken a significant step in the realm of metaverse tourism with the release of the “Shanghai Action Plan for Creating a New Path in Metaverse Tourism (2023-2025)”. The plan, unveiled by the Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, outlines the city’s strategic focus on five key areas to propel the development of metaverse tourism in the coming years.
Recognizing Shanghai’s immense potential in terms of its large-scale cultural and tourism consumer market, advanced digital infrastructure, diverse cultural and tourism applications, abundant creative resources, and thriving innovation and entrepreneurship culture, Shanghai aims to harness these advantages to foster the growth of metaverse tourism. Embracing the digital wave and technological revolution is crucial for Shanghai’s tourism industry to enhance its overall competitiveness in the digital era.
The plan emphasizes the need to actively embrace the transformative experiences brought about by immersive technologies, the evolving spatial-temporal dimensions, and the industrial transformations driven by new technologies. To achieve these goals, Shanghai will launch five specialized initiatives under the plan: “Digital Tourism Infrastructure,” “Technological Breakthroughs,” “New Metaverse Tourism Scenarios,” “Digital Art Platforms,” and “Immersive Interactive Content.”
The “Digital Tourism Infrastructure” initiative will focus on accelerating the construction of key network infrastructure in designated areas, establishing new cloud platforms tailored for the tourism industry, promoting edge computing capabilities, and facilitating access to cultural resources through the development of international, industry, and local standards.
Under the “Technological Breakthroughs” initiative, Shanghai aims to conduct collaborative research on key areas such as digital cultural rights protection, real-time audio and video, immersive interactions, and smart media. The plan also calls for the accelerated development and application of technologies like digital humans, AIGC tools platforms, rendering engines, and virtual production techniques.
The “New Metaverse Tourism Scenarios” initiative aims to continuously enhance the supply side of metaverse tourism experiences. Shanghai plans to create digital cultural scenes, expedite the digitization and display of precious cultural relics, encourage immersive tourism experiences in cultural and commercial districts, and develop high-quality and innovative performing arts products.
Through the “Digital Art Platforms” initiative, Shanghai intends to leverage its urban blockchain infrastructure to establish digital creative alliances and a storage system for digital artworks. This initiative will encourage cultural institutions, professional organizations, and artists to intensify their creative efforts and explore cross-chain applications of digital artworks in museums, scenic spots, games, and other contexts.
Lastly, the “Immersive Interactive Content” initiative aims to establish Shanghai as a hub for digital content creation. The plan focuses on leveraging artificial intelligence to empower both professional and user-generated content, thereby fostering the development of next-generation high-tech audiovisual products. Additionally, the plan encourages the convergence of innovative elements through the incubation and upgrading of characteristic industrial parks, the construction of digital IP chains, the creation of open and shared environments, and the protection of digital copyrights.
During the Shanghai Metaverse Tourism Initiative event, Shanghai Immersion Opportunities Technology Development Co., Ltd. and Shanghai iQiyi New Media Technology Co., Ltd. shared their latest advancements in metaverse technology applications, content production, scene development, and market promotion. They highlighted the successful implementation of the “Wind Rises in Luoyang” project at the Shanghai Opportunities Center, which exemplifies the integration of popular IPs and technological innovations in offline tourism experiences. Representatives expressed their intention to replicate such projects across the country, encompassing not only virtual reality but also other cultural and entertainment ventures, in order to establish a model for Shanghai’s modernized metaverse tourism.
On 15 June, Shanghai also announced its ambitious “Three-Year Action Plan for Promoting High-Quality Development of Manufacturing (2023-2025)”, which also highlights the metaverse as a crucial aspect of its vision.