Science for the benefit of global challenges, nanotechnology and the internationalisation of research will be part of the focus during Norway-Japan Science Week in Tokyo on 27-31 May, where the tenth anniversary of the agreement on research cooperation between Japan and Norway will be celebrated.
Since the agreement on bilateral research and technology was signed in 2003, collaboration and mutual exchange have expanded in many areas.
In 2012, Norway and Japan signed an agreement on research cooperation specifically related to polar research. Today, many of Norway's top research groups are working together with Japanese researchers and institutions. Developing sustainable solutions in the areas of energy and environmental technology, advanced materials and nanotechnology, seafood and food safety have been, and continue to be, key elements of the Norwegian-Japanese collaboration. In addition, space research, polar research and other research in connection with the North are emerging as potential areas for new joint research activities.
The Halden Project on nuclear reactor safety and plant materials has been a spearhead in the research collaboration between Norwegian and Japanese R&D institutions. Japan has been a member of project since 1967.
Astrophysics and neuroscience also on the agenda
Top-rate astrophysics and neuroscience groups will also be well represented during Science Week, as the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe, University of Tokyo will be hosting the Kavli Japan 2013 Laureate Lecture and Symposium together with the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Tokyo, the Kavli Foundation and the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters on 27 May. The institute is one of the 16 established by the Kavli Foundation.
Julie Christiansen is contact person for Japan at the Research Council of Norway. The symposium will address the role of science in solving common global challenges through activities such as international cooperation and exchange.
Norwegian-directed workshop on nanotechnology
Prominent Norwegian research groups from the areas of advanced materials and nanotechnology will host a workshop on 29 May in collaboration with the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS), located outside Tokyo in Tsukuba.
The work carried out at NIMS is highly relevant for Norwegian researchers in the nanotechnology and materials field. The institute takes active steps to encourage talented young researchers and has established special instruments to promote links between higher education and research.
Seeking more education and research collaboration
The increasingly rapid pace of globalisation enhances the need for international education and research cooperation. On 28 May, Norwegian and Japanese institutions participating in the bilateral cooperation will discuss their experiences and ways to further develop Norwegian-Japanese collaboration.
Norwegian-Japanese research cooperation
- On the Norwegian side, activities under the research agreement between Norway and Japan are followed up by the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Research Council of Norway and the research and technology representative at the office of Innovation Norway in Tokyo.
- On the Japanese side, the agreement was signed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but activities are followed up by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology (MEXT) and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI).
- The Research Council of Norway has collaborated with the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) for many years on researcher exchange and personal visiting researcher grants.
- Norway participates in CONCERT-Japan, an ERA-NET receiving funding under the EU's Seventh Framework Programme.
- In 2011, the NORALUMNI Japan student network was launched. The network encompasses Japanese students who have studied in Norway and Norwegian students who have studied in Japan.