Strategic Planning of Materials Research and Development for Strengthening Industrial Competitiveness/CRDS-FY2009-SP-02
Executive Summary

As a strategy to add a new direction towards specifically enhancing the global competitiveness of industries in the basic material researches carried out in Japanese universities, we propose the “Strategic Planning of Materials Research and Development for Strengthening Industrial Competitiveness”.

Researches in universities and institutions generally tend to be based on their interest, and they consider strategically insignificant for strengthening industrial competitiveness. On the other hand, though industries have large expectations for the basic researches in universities, they find difficulty in expressing a unified long-term strategy to universities, since they are compelled to value short-term profits and are competing with each other in the initial stages of technology development.

In order to overcome such situations, Center for Research and Development Strategy, CRDS, has developed “Strategic Planning on Research and Development for Strengthening Global Industrial Competitiveness” (see (1)), and applied it to the material development field. Furthermore, CRDS extracted the R&D issues which should be confronted with strategically in the future, by referring to the discussions from the bird’s eye view workshops in the “material science field” etc. (see (2) ). These issues are shown in the following table.

Industry ClustersIndustries for Energy or EnvironmentIndustries for Natural Resource DevelopmentIndustries for Information-communicationIndustries for Machinery and Precision MachineryIndustries for TransportationRequests from each industry clusterHydrogen Generation and Carbon Dioxide FixationDiversification of Industrial Core MaterialsTechnology for Nano-electronic DevicesHuman Alternative RobotsFuel Cell VehiclesBiofuels produced from MicroalgaeAutonomous Decentralized Low Power Consumption Machine SystemsNew Battery Powered Electric VehiclesAcquisition and Assessment · Monitoring of Sustainable WaterResearch and Development of Metal and Inorganic Materials extracted from Low-grade Secondary ResourcesPackaging Technology for Nano-electronic ProcessingDesign for Environment (DfE)Biological Adaptation·Autonomous Decentralized Medical Device SystemsUltra-lightweight CarsMaterial Technology – Important Elements Extracted from Interdisciplinary IndustriesVoid Space Control · Utilization TechnologyThermal ManagementFusion Molecule Material TechnologyInterface · Surface Control and FormationComposite MaterialsLightweight Solution
(1) Strategic Proposal “Developing a Method for Strategic Proposals for Strategic Planning on Research & Development for Strengthening Global Industrial Competitiveness??Creation and Development of ‘Umbrella Industries’ utilizing ‘Element Industries’ which Japan boasts” CRDS-FY2008-SP-10 from CRDS, JST.
(2) Report on the Results, Effects of Integration, Future Issues of Nanotechnology - the Bird’s Eye View Workshop in the “Material Science Field” from CRDS, JST, CRDS-FY2008-WR-05.
The requests to the research and development from each industry cluster listed here comprehensively describe the themes which should be preferentially invested to further strengthen the future industrial competition. By making R&D investments according to these requests, we will be able to allocate funds more effectively and expect a speedier contribution from the specific basic research results. In extracting technical issues and element technologies, emphasis was laid on the following two perspectives of “public investment necessary to make strong industries stronger” and “upfront public investment for future industry competition” rather than “the ideal social image of the future”.

Here we do not intend to leave the matter of the future R&D in each industry just to the industrial world, but have presented the critical items requested towards R&D addressed by the non-industrial world. By implementing these items, it will become possible to realize innovative breakthroughs, knowledge creation and so on, which will be difficult to expect directly from R&D in industries, thus it enables us to contribute to maintain and enhance the global competitiveness of Japanese industries.

In order to speedily connect R&D results by using industrial competitiveness, multi-faceted approaches need to be considered, and the fields of R&D or needed features and functions, are widely varied. This proposal aims at enhancing the connection between basic researches and industries by specifically presenting the requests to strengthen the industrial competitiveness to the researchers in universities, and so on, and facilitate conveying the requests from industries to the basic researches in universities which have not necessarily been done systematically.