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PRESTO Convergence Camp
Front runners in the young scientist and business sectors discuss the future and social significance of research

August 2019

Precursory Research for Embryonic Science and Technology (PRESTO)

Challenge-driven Convergence Engine (CHANCE)

In convergence research, researchers from across disciplines share common goals and collaborate to solve grand challenges, such as environmental issues and aging problems. Convergence research has become essential in recent years for sprouting novel seeds in basic research in Japan. The development of convergence research requires places where researchers can meet and exchange diverse views to produce new ideas.

PRESTO program supports basic research by individual researchers and held the “PRESTO Convergence Camp: New social design through discussions with top young scientists” to inspire researchers involved in convergence research. The camp was organized as a joined activity with the CHANCE initiative, an open platform for co-designing future society, through a collaboration between academia, industry, and government.

The 2nd PRESTO Convergence Camp was held in May and 38 participants from 23 companies and organizations gathered. Seven PRESTO researchers presented their themes, including “The fascinating reproductive world of plants” and “Unraveling the relationship between air pollution and brain disease.” Participants attended roundtable discussions of their interested themes and engaged in fruitful discussions about the future and social significance of research from the various perspectives of their different fields and industries.

The camp encouraged participants to expand their horizons and research ideas. A researcher said, “I noticed that I can leverage my research in an area that I had never thought of.” One corporate stakeholder also said, “Working with researchers was groundbreaking and worthwhile.” Due to the event’s success, further development of convergence research is expected in the PRESTO program.

  • Researchers and participants discussed each theme around a table.