3rd HOPE Meetings Overview
Date: March 7-11, 2011 (Registration: March 6)
Venue:Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa (Tokyo, Japan)
Subjected Field: Physics (and related fields)
Organizer: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)
Under the auspice of the Yomiuri Shimbun
From 2008, JSPS has been holding HOPE Meetings, which provide a platform for young researchers from the Asia-Pacific region to engage in discussions with Nobel laureates and other distinguished researchers and to interact with peers of their own generation.The third in this series of HOPE Meetings was held on the subject of physics and related fields from 7-11 March in Tokyo. Its organizing committee was chaired by JSPS executive director Dr. Makoto Kobayashi, 2008 Nobel laureate in physics.
Attended by about 100 doctoral students from 14 countries and regions of the Asia-Pacific, the meeting was addressed by Dr. Kobayashi and eight other Nobel laureates and two world-renowned scientists.
HOPE Meetings comprise five basic components: (1) Lectures by the Nobel laureates and distinguished scientists, (2) group discussions among the participants attended by the lecturers, (3) individual poster displays by the participants, (4) presentations by teams comprising participants of various nationalities, and (5) an observation tour of state-of-the-art research facilities.
The young participants of these meetings are both edified and inspired by hearing directly from the lecturers about their research accomplishments and ways of living as scientists, while broadening their perspectives and horizons through close interaction with peers from a wide swath of nations and cultures. The participants of this HOPE Meeting praised this opportunity and the chance it gave them to build networks with future colleagues within the region.
Right in the middle of the team presentations in the afternoon of the last day, the Great East Japan Earthquake struck 370 kilometers northeast of Tokyo. Resulting disruptions caused the participants to return home early, albeit with indelible memories.
It’s our hope that the meeting participants will put into action the new knowledge they’ve garnered and networks they’ve seeded at the HOPE Meeting as they spread their wings and go on to soar as researchers both within the region and the wider global scientific community.
HOPE Meeting Jr.
On 6 March, the day before the commencement of the HOPE Meeting, a “HOPE Meeting Jr.” was held, which gave Japanese elementary and junior-high school students an opportunity to listen to and talk with Nobel laureates. Numbering 26, the students came from around Japan, and were assisted in conducting an experiment and enjoying their exchange with the laureates by nine of the graduate students who would be attending the HOPE Meeting.
On 10 March during the HOPE Meeting, a “HOPE Dialogue” was carried out. Organized in conjunction with JSPS’s Science Dialogue Program, the session gave high school students aspiring to become scientists a unique opportunity to engage in conversation with the HOPE Meeting lecturers, which kindled their interest in research while expanding their international perspectives. Afterwards, the students told us it was the first time for them to participate in such a fun scientific event and how it had elevated their interest in doing research work.