2018 Autumn Conferment of Decorations on Foreign Nationals (UK)

Sir David Alexander Warren KCMG

The Government of Japan has decided to confer the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun upon Sir David Warren in recognition of his invaluable contribution to strengthening bilateral relations and promoting friendship between Japan and the UK.

Sir David Warren has made a significant contribution to promoting Japan-UK relations through his long diplomatic service as well as his various activities after his retirement. Throughout his diplomatic career, he was continuously engaged in promoting Japan-UK relations through his three stints at the UK Embassy in Japan over a total of 13 years, culminating in his final diplomatic posting as UK Ambassador to Japan from 2008 to 2012. Some of his remarkable contributions as Ambassador include his participation in the celebration of the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and the UK in 2008, which involved over 300 official events at the British Embassy in Japan, and his significant role in assisting Japan in the aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, therefore contributing to the further strengthening of Japan-UK relations.

After retiring from the diplomatic service, he formally took up the role of chairman of the Japan Society on December 2012 and will step down at the end of this year after six years. The Japan Society is the leading independent body in the United Kingdom dedicated to the promotion of UK-Japan cultural, educational and business links. He actively involves himself in running the Society by overseeing educational activities as well as holding business-related events to promote Japan in the UK. He is also a member of the Steering Committee of Japan House London which opened in June as a new Japanese cultural hub and which he continues to promote. He is a visiting Professor in the School of East Asian Studies at the University of Sheffield, a member of the Advisory Board of the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures and an Associate Fellow of the Asia Programme at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House.

In view of Sir David’s sterling work outlined above, the Government of Japan considers that he well deserves to be honoured for his outstanding contribution to the promotion of Japan-UK relations.

Professor Baron Peter Piot KCMG

The Government of Japan has decided to confer the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun on Professor Peter Piot in recognition of his significant contribution to promoting Japan’s efforts in the field of global health.

Professor Piot was a member of the team who discovered the Ebola virus, and is a microbiologist widely known around the world for his research into Ebola and AIDS. In addition to his research on the AIDS project in Africa, he served as an Associate Director of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Global Programme on AIDS from 1992 to 1994, as Executive Director of UNAIDS and Under Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1995 until 2008, and has been Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine since 2010. He has received a number of awards in the field of global health, including the 2nd Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize for Medical Research in 2013. In 2014, he was one of “The Ebola Fighters” chosen by the American Magazine TIME as “TIME Person of the Year”.

As a member of the international community, the Japanese government has actively cooperated towards the fight against AIDS, a key issue in the field of global health which is one of its main areas of diplomacy. Since UNAIDS was established and Professor Piot took up his position as its first Executive Director, Japan has participated in UNAIDS activities as a member country of the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board, and has regularly provided personnel from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare. As part of this, Professor Piot provided strong leadership and worked to promote global measures against AIDS, committed to Japan’s human resource development for health, and also made a significant contribution to promoting Japan’s international efforts in the field of AIDS. Further, having recognised that AIDS is also a serious problem in the Asia region, where infection spreads rapidly, he set up the International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP), and Japan contributes to forming policies to tackle AIDS by providing personnel to this Congress. Through his cooperation with Japan, Professor Piot has made a significant contribution to the promotion of AIDS measures in the Asia region.

Since its founding in 2015, Professor Piot has been involved as a board member of the Global Health Innovative Technology Fund, a pharmaceutical research and development fund based on joint funding from government, private companies and public organisations that is a Japanese government initiative. Using his experience and insight he contributed significantly to building the foundations of this Fund. From 2015, as Vice-Chair of the Board, Professor Piot has played a key role in the decision making for GHIT, and as a result this has led to investments of 13bn billion yen (approx. £90m) by the end of 2017 into product development companies/projects that use Japanese science and drug-developing technology. Through the fund’s PR activities, he has also helped to convey Japan’s contribution towards research development in the field of global health.

As Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine he worked as an adviser to the “Working Group on Global Health” in 2017 which aimed to consider the global health strategy for the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, and he also contributed to the formulation of the proposal to the G7 Summit. In the same year, he also summarised discussions as MC at the “International Conference on Universal Health Coverage in the New Development Era: Toward Building Resilient and Sustainable Health Systems”, hosted by the Government of Japan, and contributed to the Japan’s agenda setting and increasing its presence for the Summit.

As Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Professor Piot has promoted research cooperation over many years between LSHTM and Nagasaki University. As well taking a lead in sharing research materials between the two universities, hosting joint research meetings, and promoting academic exchange, he has also set up a joint degree between programme between the universities, the first for either institution since their formation, helping to drive forward Japan-UK cooperation in research and development in the field of public health.

Sir Paul Nurse

The Government of Japan has decided to confer the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star on Sir Paul Nurse in recognition of his significant contribution to promoting research exchange and science and technology cooperation between Japan and the United Kingdom.

Sir Paul Nurse is a leading representative of UK science and academia, and is a globally renowned geneticist and cell biologist. Over the years he has held a number of prominent science and academic positions in the UK, enjoying many significant achievements in the field of biology and making valuable contributions to the promotion of UK-Japan academic exchange. After receiving a PhD from the University of East Anglia, Sir Paul Nurse carried out many years of research at various institutions including the Imperial Cancer Research Fund and Oxford University. Following this, he served as Chief Executive of Cancer Research UK from 2001, President of the Rockefeller University New York from 2003, Director of the Francis Crick Institute from 2011, and as President of the Royal Society from 2010 until 2015. As a result of his research into cell cycle control, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 2001.

While President of the Royal Society, Sir Paul collaborated with the Science Council of Japan and other national science councils, taking the lead in coordinating science and technology-related proposals towards the G7/G8 Summits every year from 2011 to 2015. At the G8 Science Ministers and National Science Academies meeting held at the Royal Society in 2013, Sir Paul led discussions and played a coordinating role in producing the joint statement recommending the global issues that the G8 should address, and contributed to strengthening science and technology cooperation between the UK, Japan and other countries in the G8. In addition to this, he has done much to promote Japan-UK academic exchange by strengthening collaboration with Japanese academic institutions, including recommending participants from the Royal Society to the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science’s research programmes. Following the Great East Japan Earthquake, he made efforts to maintain and expand Japan-UK academic exchange through a letter to the Embassy of Japan in the UK and the Science Council of Japan.

In 2010, Sir Paul joined the STS Forum as a Council Member, contributing to the management of the forum, helping set the agenda, selecting speakers, and he takes an active role in the discussions by visiting Japan to attend and speak at the Forum as a representative of UK academia. Furthermore, as a member of the first Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize Committee, Sir Paul visited Japan to attend the committee meeting in order to discuss the final selection of candidates for this award, who would then be recommended to Japan’s Prime Minister for his final decision. Through Sir Paul’s involvement, he helped widen the reach of Japan’s efforts in the field of infectious diseases to the international community. Sir Paul has also given a number of presentations in Japan, not only to experts, but to a wide range of audiences, and worked to enliven Japan-UK academic exchange. Until now, including in his role as Director at the Francis Crick Institute, Sir Paul has welcomed many Japanese researchers, helping them to develop their skills in the field of biology, as well as promoting Japan-UK research collaboration over many years through joint research papers and projects.

In view of Sir Paul’s outstanding work as outlined above, the Government of Japan considers that he fully deserves to be honoured for his significant contribution to Japan-UK relations.