2010 UK-Japan Young Scientist Workshop - a Cambridge First



2010 UK-Japan Young Scientist Workshop Participants

Image: Clifton Scientific Trust

This summer, the UK-Japan Young Scientist Workshop was held in Cambridge for the first time. Most recently held in Kyoto, these Workshops have been running since 2001 and bring together senior high school/sixth form students from schools across Britain and Japan. The students live together for a week, this year at Murray Edwards College in association with the Kaetsu Educational and Cultural Centre, and work in small teams with scientists and engineers. At the end of the week they give team presentations of their achievements. As well as 'toe-dipping' cutting edge science, by living and working closely together, the students learn about each other and form lasting friendships. This is a challenging high-pressure week and one in which the students thrive.

This year fifty students from twelve schools across Britain and Japan came together in Cambridge and worked in nine project teams with scientists from Cambridge University and The Babraham Institute. Projects included the synthesis and manipulation of gold nanoparticles in the Chemistry Department, University of Cambridge, a project on nanotechnology for future electronics with Hitachi Cambridge in the Cavendish Laboratory, three ecological projects at the Evolutionary Genetics Laboratory at Madingley and four bioscience projects at the Babraham Institute on bioinformatics, molecular signalling, neuron degeneration and cognitive neuroscience.

Among the special guests at the team presentations were Lord Rees of Ludlow, President of the Royal Society, Dr Richard Pike, Chief Executive of the Royal Society of Chemistry and Mr Hans-Jeorg Hinkel from Mitsubishi Electric Europe. Also in attendance from the Japanese side were Professor Kozo Hiramatsu, Director of JSPS London, Mr Takeshi Sekiguchi, Deputy Director of JSPS London and Mr Tomohiko Arai, First Secretary of The Embassy of Japan.



Dr Oren Schermans student team in Chemistry

Image: Clifton Scientific Trust

Two of the participating students gave the following comments about the workshop:


I think it was a good opportunity that students from England and Japan worked together through science. I learned that even though we do not speak the same language, we can share a lot of things. Also I learned that no matter how difficult it is to solve problems, we can get some result by helping each other.
Keiko Shiozaki from Ritsumeikan Moriyama Senior High School.


I suppose the most important thing that I took from this workshop is that science is becoming more and more international, so being able to work with Japanese students has set us up well for the future. I can say I have taken a lot from this week. I have made new friends, seen new science, made new memories and had an absolutely wonderful time.
Louise Deer, Colchester County High School for Girls


The Workshop was devised and organised by Clifton Scientific Trust in association with the University of Cambridge, Hitachi Cambridge and Babraham Institute scientists and engineers and the participating schools, and was supported by grants and charitable donations from the Department for Education, the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, Mitsubishi Electric Europe, Toshiba Research Europe and in Japan from the Japan Science and Technology Agency. Clifton Scientific Trust www.clifton-scientific.org is registered as a charity in England and Wales 1086933 and further information can be obtained from eric.albone@clifton-scientific.org The Trust was privileged to be recipient of the Japan Society Award for 2007 for this work.


Dr Eric Albone,

Clifton Scientific Trust