Picobiology : Life Science at the atomic level

Picobiology: Life Science at the atomic level" was selected in 2007 as one of the 13 programs in the field, "Life Science

Comments from the Program Leader

Following the 21st century COE program, a plan for establishing a research base centered at the University of Hyogo Graduate School of Life Science for the global COE program was adopted. To fulfill the expectations of the Global COE Committee, I would like to request the university and prefectural agency, including the university faculties directly in charge of promoting the COE program undertaking for their cooperation and support more than as ever.

Specific information on the COE program establishment plan will be given in the following pages. Here, allow me to explain the basic policy of the promotion of COE.
Program Leader: Prof. Shinya YOSHIKAWA
The objective of the global COE is the gmaking of an internationally competitive universityh through the gconstruction of internationally appealing graduate school educationh. Comparing to the objective of the 21st century COE program, it appears that an emphasis is placed on education (researcher training). However, it is impossible to construct an internationally appealing graduate school program at a university where internationally appealing research is not promoted. Without saying, to accomplish a truly internationally acclaimed (creative) research work, long-range steady efforts are needed. As opposed to this kind of research is the gcatching up and overtakingh type of research and in this research, by quickly adopting the methods and ideas developed by the research groups overseas, scientific papers must be mass-produced with aid of manpower and research fund. To achieve this, persons available immediately as a regular member are needed and therefore, there is no room for the long-range training of researchers. Thus, this system will propagate the idea of gthe emphasis on research and the neglect of educationh that is bitterly criticized by the gGlobal COE Committee chairman in his inaugural addressh. From such research group, there is absolutely no possibility of producing internationally acclaimed scientific research work. As it is said that gteaching is learningh, true education will surely bring the researcherfs growth. The above-mentioned long-range steady effort should include an effort to train researchers. Accordingly, it can be said that by neglecting education, the establishment of a research base promoting international appealing (creative) research is quite impossible. Because the effect of educational improvements is not apparent immediately, improvements especially requiring budgetary appropriation are easily postponed anyway. The fact that the university was selected as a global COE is viewed as a rare opportunity to make these educational changes, and all persons involved in promoting the research base establishment intend to tackle it positively.

It is clear that the ginternationally appealing researchh is not a research that simply keeps up with the fashion. However, it is necessary to see through that the research is not in fashion because of low academic importance or because the research is assumed to be extremely difficult to carry out. Even if it is the latter case, unless persuasive and concrete plannings for the research are presented, the latter is forced to be regarded as a self-righteous research similar to the former. There is barely a possibility of making a revolutionary discovery from researches like these; however, in order to promote the global COE program operated by a national budget, it is necessary to fulfill the responsibility of explaining the importance of the research. A non-Japanese researcher once said that gsuperiority and inferiority of research is neither far from nor close to the applied field.h It would be difficult to make life science, a basic science, into an internationally appealing research if the possibility of application is only proposed as the importance of research. Giving the opportunity to young researchers to present their work at young researchersf work presentation and year-end accomplishment presentation, our research base will also put a stress on research evaluation as much as possible, in addition to graduate school education.