Vol.4 No.2 2011
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Round-table talks :Third anniversary of Synthesiology−128−Synthesiology - English edition Vol.4 No.2 (2011) matter of whether the general public will accept the result of risk assessment. When I talk to the local government or company, it is about social acceptance, and I think AIST should step into that field. Well, there’s a problem of how many people with sociology background can be employed here. YoshikawaI’ve been thinking about the same thing for a long time, and that was why I set up “design science”. I’ve been told that “design is not a discipline”, and the individual designers just made things in solitude. There was no accumulation, and there were no advancements like in physics, and it’s been viewed with some degree of discrimination because it cannot be expressed quantitatively, and therefore it’s not a science. In a wide sense, there’s a structure where the science department is important but the engineering department isn’t. I am trying to think of the method for “making science out of qualitative issues”. The fact that many issues can only be handled qualitatively means that it can be a major issue as the subject of science, and the researcher involved deserves respect.KinoshitaWhile I am not a physicist, I have a science background. In my field, many people who studied in faculties of science seek for qualitative discussions, and many people from faculties of engineering tend to seek for quantitative arguments, such as computer performance, etc. I think it’s the people from faculties of science where the qualitative discussions are sought that are discriminated.AkamatsuIn the case of Dr. Suwa, the goal is not set with quantitativeness alone, but qualitative element enters to form a cycle. I felt that the next step couldn’t be taken unless some sort of spiral is set off.SuwaIt’s exactly as you say. While the qualitative factor cannot be explained clearly, it is there for sure, and the quality changes throughout the research process. If there is an academic demand at some point and the daily trendiness mixes in, a certain vector is formed. We must decide what we should do about the vector as we come across it. As a cycle, I think we return to the basics again and again. AkamatsuDr. Watari emphasizes that the story is important.WatariI’ve been in charge of various projects in the Research and Innovation Promotion Headquarters, and the way of thinking of synthesiology was extremely instructive for understanding the start-up of a project and its topic. Recently, we’re promoting another activity, the promotion of joint research with companies. As a recent trend, we find that it’s difficult to determine the topic of joint research between the AIST and the company people. That is because they do not have the synthesiology to breakdown the subject based on the topics they are studying. To get the blooming results, we must think about which elemental technologies to select or which technologies should be developed as the target of basic research. I think synthesiology is necessary to send the technology into society, such as understanding the other’s demand or creating a scenario through close communication. I feel that the study of building synthesiology may be the most important activity for AIST right now.KinoshitaJoint work with industry sometimes brings about a language barrier. In some cases, I found that there was some fundamental misunderstanding half a year after we started talking.WatariI think narrowing down the subject is a preliminary preparation stage, but the vocabulary is difficult even within AIST.AkamatsuI think it is good training to write for Synthesiology so people of other fields can understand. Dr. Makiko SuwaDr. Hiroyuki Yoshikawa

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