JST (President: Michiharu Nakamura)’s Center for Research and Development Strategy (CRDS, Director: Hiroyuki Yoshikawa) has looked into problems regarding the roles and responsibilities of science and the government in policy making and implementation in the last few years. CRDS issued a strategic proposal on this issue in March this year; an article by Tateo Arimoto, Professor of the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies and Deputy-Director General of CRDS, and Yasushi Sato, Fellow of CRDS, discussing how Japan should take action on this issue is published on Science (7 September 2012). *
*Tateo Arimoto and Yasushi Sato, “Rebuilding Public Trust in Science for Policy-Making,” Science 337 (7 September 2012), pp.1176-1177. DOI:10.1126/science.1224004.
This article first mentions that, after the great earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear accident in March 2011, the public trust in science and technology was damaged and the relations between science and the government has been discussed extensively. The article calls for Japan’s efforts to install a robust framework to link science and policy making, such as the establishment of principles regarding the relations between science and the government in policy making and implementation.
The article then introduces recent trends from international perspectives. In the United States, President Obama has promoted scientific integrity in government since he came into office. In the United Kingdom, principles regarding the relations between the government and scientific advisers were established in 2010. More recently, the U.S. National Science Foundation has hosted the “Global Summit on Merit Review” in May this year, with the aim of enhancing international discussion on scientific merit review and scientific integrity. In the Summit, the Global Research Council was established. Meanwhile, the InterAcademy Council is carrying out a project on “research integrity and scientific responsibility,” in which educational materials for the global scientific community is being developed.
The article finally emphasizes the need for international as well as domestic efforts to create mechanisms to utilize scientific/technical expertise effectively and to maintain mutual trust between the government and the scientific community, as the world has entered an era of intense, intricate interaction between science, technology, and the globalized society.
CRDS, “Toward the Establishment of Principles Regarding the Roles and Responsibilities of Science and Government in Policy Making” (CRDS-FY2011-SP-09), March 2012.
CRDS (Center for Research and Development Strategy)
CRDS was founded in July 2003 in order to strengthen the strategic planning capability of Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST). It strives persistently to advance science and technology toward the fulfillment of societal needs and realization of our vision of future society.
Tateo Arimoto, Yasushi Sato
Center for Research and Development Strategy / Japan Science and Technology Agency
K’s Gobancho, 7, Gobancho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0076
Fax: +81-3-5214-7481 Tel: +81-3-5214-7385