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JST co-organized a Scientific Session at the ESOF 2022

Department for Promotion of Science in Society

The EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) 2022 was held from 13-16 July 2022 in a hybrid format at the venue in Leiden, the Netherlands, and online. JST organized a joint online session with the World Bosai Forum Foundation.

ESOF is the Europe's largest dialogue platform for interdisciplinary and intersectional debate about scientific culture, scientific research and innovation, for and with society, bringing together over 4,500 leading thinkers, innovators, policy makers, journalists, educations from more than 90 countries to discuss current and future breakthroughs in contemporary science. Under the theme “Crossing the Borders, Engaged Science, Resilient Societies”, the ESOF2022 offered a range of programs for dialogue focusing on how science can address and solve the increasingly complex and interrelated social challenges of recent years.

During the session organized by JST, participants discussed topics including what science can do for community building, which forms the basis of a resilient society where more integrated and effective efforts are required in the face of increasingly diverse crises, as well as what scientists and local governments can work on together. The discussion was facilitated by Professor Yuichi Ono, Representative Director of the World Bosai Forum Foundation, with presentations by Ms. Risa Yanagiya, City of Sendai, on the experiences and challenges of community building to prepare for disasters, and by Ms. Katja Sjöholm, Head of Cocreation and Innovation, City of Espoo, Finland, on its advanced cases, promoting open innovation with citizen participation. In addition, Dr Walter J. Ammann, President of the Foundation Global Risk Forum GRF Davos, spoke on how governments and local authorities consider risk management and increase awareness and commitment to risk reduction for achieving the global targets of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, based on the model developed by the Global Risk Forum. During the panel discussion and the subsequent open discussion, a range of perspectives were exchanged on the engagement of science, including the potential and benefits of utilizing digital and data for community building, reflecting the COVID-19 pandemic, and the need for more open discussion on the pros and cons of the current growth-oriented economic model. Mr. Atsushi Arakawa, Director of the Department for Promotion of Science in Society, JST, emphasized the importance of turning the dialogue into action to solve societal challenges and expressed anticipation for the discussion to be taken over by the World BOSAI Forum to be held in Sendai in March next year.

EuroScience (External website)