About the Cover
Vol. 81 No. 8 (2005)
Opened in July 2001 in the Tokyo Waterfront region (Odaiba), the Tokyo Academic Park is a complex consisting of three institutions: The Tokyo International Exchange Centre (IEC), the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (MESI), and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) Tokyo Waterfront. At first sight, these three institutions may seem mutually unrelated. However, in reality, they are closely integrated by a unifying concept. The concept is “a hub to connect science and culture together” in the present knowledge society. In every country nowadays, scientific as well as cultural research activities are increasingly dependent on public funds. The public expects that new knowledge generated by public funds be used to solve problems in the modern society. However, it is fair to say that, although research keeps accumulating new knowledge, it has not been efficiently utilized to solve those problems. One of the major reasons for the inconsistent application of new knowledge is lack of communication among different sectors in the society: －the scientific community, the general public, and the industry. The mission of the international Exchange Centre is to encourage scientific and cultural communications within the society and among nations, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation attempts at breaking the isolation of the scientific community in the society, and the AIST builds bridges between the industry and the research community. Thus, these three institutions cooperate together to promote better circulation and utilization of new scientific and cultural knowledge for solving the problems of the modern society.
The illustration shows three buildings: AIST, MESI, and IEC from left to right.
Written by Park Superintendent Prof. Hiroyuki Yoshikawa