Vol.4 No.2 2011
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Round-table talks : Third anniversary of Synthesiology−129−Synthesiology - English edition Vol.4 No.2 (2011) WatariNormally, I have no idea what the research papers of other fields are saying, but I can get the flow when I read Synthesiology. When I read the questions first, I can understand what other people consider as the main issue and what the point is. I think the good thing about Synthesiology is that a reader can understand a paper of any discipline if he/she has a basic knowledge of science.Through the discussion with reviewersAkamatsuOne of the characteristics is the discussion with reviewers. How do you feel about the quality of the discussion with the reviewers?KomaiIt was vey educational. I had about two exchanges, and when I wrote the scenario, everything became clear, and I am grateful for this experience. I have abundant dealings with companies, and the people of the companies are dead serious about manufacturing and product realization. I feel that the R&Ds at AIST do not have a scenario all the way to the final product realization. I feel that by writing the whole scenario, you can propose the research project with the fastest route to product realization.SuwaFirst, I was thinking I had to explain my research within the framework of AIST’s Full Research. When I tried to fit it in, there were some kinks that I found rather uncomfortable. I was advised to “freely present what you designed”, and I felt better about writing. It was very educational because I was able to look back on my research. I think the paper turned out excellently. However, I think this kind of discussion can be directed only to the employees of AIST. I assume you will be seeking submission from people outside of AIST. In conventional papers and journals, there isn’t much exchange of opinions for the reviews, and I am worried that there aren’t any people outside of AIST who will spend time on this. AkamatsuDr. Yoshikawa, what do you think after hearing other people’s comments?YoshikawaDr. Komai extends into the field of science and technology policy and system design, not just the new risk assessment technology for soil and ground water contamination. Dr. Watari covers various fields to realize the great objective of energy-saving process for ceramics manufacturing. I call this the “design of super-discipline”, and the “synthesis” is possible when the individual researches are integrated. Dr. Suwa integrates wide-ranging researches in bioinformatics that is the combination of life science, information and communication, and ICT. Dr. Kinoshita’s clinico-informatics discusses, in some sense, the design of synthesiology or the essence of synthesis. Dr. Nakamura engages in a wide range of research with the increasing importance of standard and globalization in the background. In Dr. Wakita’s seamless geological map of Japan, accumulated knowledge was not written up as a research paper until now, but with this paper, the larger issue in the background was extracted.I think that the science handled in Synthesiology has a universal structure, though rather abstract, in the background of diverse issues. From the accumulated papers, it may be possible for us to extract something that is different from the methodology of Type 1 Basic Research, but just as important; something that we can say “this is Type 2 Basic Research”. That is something which I look forward to.Expectation for SynthesiologyAkamatsuFinally, please express your expectations for the journal Synthesiology.KinoshitaI’ve worked on the scenario based on the thought that whenever you discuss safety and reliability there is always risk assessment, and that dependable and reliable software should be constructed in a certain way. I’ve never thought of generalizing this to other fields of technology. So, Dr. Yoshikawa's comment was an eye-opener for me, and to pursue a common structure in these kinds of scenarios is interesting. Hopefully, there will also be other authors who will take part in the pursuit of this direction. SuwaIf it is called science, it must be reproducible. I think it would be interesting to categorize the structure of researches in linkage with the results, to study how many percentages of researches succeeded or failed when some method was taken. Also, considering the trend in the world and the interaction with the exterior environment, I think it will be helpful to see the results of the research group in a certain era and the changes in reproducibility over time. AkamatsuThat means that one may fail using the same method depending on the changes in the social situation. I hear suggestions that people would like to read stories of failures, but you’d have to be brave to publish that.WakitaIn my field, recently we are discussing “geodiversity”, and we hope to propose a new discipline as synthesiology of the fused disciplines. I hope you open roads for publishing cases of failures and successes of attempting such fusions.

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