On Friday 21 October 2016, the Embassy of Japan in the UK hosted a seminar and networking lunch to discuss the latest trends and future challenges in advancing science diplomacy. The event brought together a wide range of participants from Japan and the UK, as well as the wider international community, and welcomed representatives from government, academia and the private sector.
The morning session featured presentations from Professor Teruo Kishi, Science and Technology Advisor to the Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, and a talk by his UK counterpart, Professor Robin Grimes, Chief Scientific Advisor to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
The two advisers talked about the role of science and technology diplomacy in a modern context, and then took part in an audience-led discussion, facilitated by Professor Nabil Ayad of Loughborough University London, which focused on wide-ranging topics such as human resource development education in science diplomacy, and the implications of Brexit on the field of science and technology.
The afternoon session featured an introduction to Japan’s ‘Cross-ministerial Strategic Innovation Promotion Programme (SIP)’, the Japanese national flagship project for Science, Technology and Innovation. This project is spearheaded by the Council for Science, Technology and Innovation (CSTI) and the session included thematic presentations regarding four projects, namely, 1) Structural Materials for Innovation (SM4 I), 2) Automated Driving System, 3) Infrastructure Maintenance, Renovation and Management and 4) Enhancement of Societal Resiliency against Natural Disasters, as well as an introduction to the science and innovation landscape in the UK by BEIS. This session also included lively participation from the audience, with discussion focused on the efforts of both countries towards implementing science in society, promoting international initiatives and human resource development.
The programme and speakers’ biographies can be found here.
Embassy of Japan