The conference of ASIW2016 was held in Tokyo during 2-3 June. Collaboration concerning technology and science between Norway and Japan has long history which motivates the conference.
The first day conference was started opening and plenary sessions. Welcome addresses by Ambassador of Norway and Vice minister of MEXT were followed by Norwegian Arctic Research policy and Japanese research policy by the International Director of the Research Council of Norway and the Director of Ocean and Earth Division of MEXT, respectively. In the keynote session, ArCS was introduced as a project which promotes science studies based on the Japan’s Arctic Policy. Interconnection of climates between the Arctic and Asian/Pacific was also noted from Japanese side. Economic opportunity and challenge and the relation among education, research and innovation were noted from Norwegian side.
Specific five parallel sessions were held in the afternoon. Themes were “Marine operation and Social needs”, “Marine environment and resource management”, “Arctic climate system and tele-connections”, “Climate process and the role of Antarctica” and “Energy and infrastructure for Arctic sustainability”. There were tens of presentations on each session. Changes in the territorial ecosystem were also discussed in the third session. The first through the fourth sessions were continued to be held until morning of the second day. In the second day afternoon, sessions were re-composed under themes of “Education”, “Technology Development”, “Prospect of Arctic cooperation between Norway and Japan(Legal and Policy)”, and “Observing System and Data Sharing”. (I participated sessions on the third and the last themes.) Most of scientists joined in the session of the last theme and they shared experiences and information of their observation. Needs for research collaboration between Norway and Japan were pointed out including data sharing frequently. On the other hand, discussions held in the session on the third theme were very interesting from the view point of the structure of ArCS where natural science and social science stand together.
Through the conference, I had an impression concerning the scientific cooperation between Norway and Japan. The Arctic issues are mostly Norway’s great national issues as all presentations were so excellent and with deep insights. But Norway seemed to hope these issues to be more international/global ones. The scientific theme proposed from Japan could be more global (even equatorial) issues so far.
Masao Fukasawa (ArCS PD)