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Japan's S&T Minister to Speak at AAAS
Koji Omi, Japan's Minister of State for Science and Technology Policy, will give a talk on Thursday, 6 September at AAAS about Japan's future and the role that science and technology will play.
The Embassy of Japan and AAAS will host Omi's visit, which is being sponsored by the Washington Science Policy Alliance, a coalition of institutions that has banded together to conduct seminars and meetings that focus on specific science and technology policy issues.
The Japanese minister has become one of the chief political advocates for improving the role of S&T in Japan, and is the chief architect of Japan's emerging S&T policies. In his current position, he advises Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on S&T issues, and administers all important policy and budgetary matters relating to science and technology in Japan across all government ministries through the Council for S&T Policy. Minister Omi has argued persuasively that Japan must further develop a strong knowledge base, and become more innovative if Japan's economy is to grow enough to support its aging population in the future.
Omi will discuss S&T policy and bilateral cooperation with the United States, as well as Japan's Basic Plan for S&T. The plan was stipulated in accordance with the provisions of the Basic Law for Science and Technology passed unanimously in both houses of Japan's parliament in 1995, under Minister Omi's leadership. The Basic Plan for S&T recommends that government funding for competitive research and development (R&D) be doubled over five years, and outlines R&D priorities in four key areas: life sciences, information and communication technologies, the environment, and nanotechnology and material sciences.
The seminar will begin at 5:30 PM in the AAAS main auditorium, 1200 New York Ave., NW, Washington, DC. It will be followed by a reception. Anyone wishing to attend the minister's talk should send an email message to email@example.com. Information on how to sign up for invitations to future seminars is available here.
-- Coimbra Sirica