Jargon Watch: IR3S (Integrated Research System for Sustainability Science)

Does your college have a B.A. in Sustainability? IPOS, the Intensive Program on Sustainability is an educational course on global sustainability in Asia. This course stared in 2004, looking at Asia as the key region in achieving global sustainability:

On one hand, solutions to Asia's regional problems are an essential requisite for global sustainability. On the other hand, Asian traditions and perspectives should be introduced to other parts of the world and contribute to global sustainability much more. IPoS is a challenge to develop an educational program that enables such goals.

A great way for students to get together to discuss important issues that will shape our future here in Japan, China, India - and a lot of other great places to live, if you are ready to make the leap.Sustainability Science is the official journal of the Integrated Research System for Sustainability Science (IR3S). Yuya Kajikawa et al discuss how to create an academic landscape of sustainability science:

Sustainability is an important concept for society, economics, and the environment, with thousands of research papers published on the subject annually. As sustainability science becomes a distinctive research field, it is important to define sustainability clearly and grasp the entire structure, current status, and future directions of sustainability science.

A number of universities in Japan are involved in thinking about sustainability:

Kazuo Oike, Kyoto University:

The 21st century is quite often pronounced as the century of the environment. It means the following two things. First, the global environmental problem will become more serious to the extent that it threatens the existence of human beings. Second, the challenge to preserve the environment is expected to work as a new driving force to accelerate economic growth, since innovation is one of the necessary conditions for economic growth.


Katsuhiko Shirai, Waseda University:

Worldwide countermeasures for global warming are rapidly changing. After a decline following the enactment of the Framework Convention on Climate Change in 1992 and the Kyoto Protocol of 1997, the international political momentum behind such measures is once again building strong momentum.

As these two trends advance, we must closely examine the secondary effects of and reactions to the measures for global warming that have influenced and can be expected to influence the developing countries especially in the Asian region.

Hiroshi Komiyama, Tokyo University:

Hiroshi Komiyama's "Vision 2050" is a plan for paving a road to global sustainability. It lays out a path to a sustainable future for humanity that could realistically be achieved by 2050 through the application of science and technology. A prominent Japanese academic and leader in global sustainability, Komiyama draws upon realistic assumptions and solid scientific concepts to create a vision that makes the living standards enjoyed by developed countries today possible for all people by 2050. "Vision 2050" is built upon three fundamental principles – increased energy efficiency, recycling, and development of renewable energy sources – and the book argues for the technological potential of all three. Specifically, Komiyama envisions a three-fold increase in overall energy efficiency and a doubling of renewable energy resources by 2050. "Vision 2050: Roadmap for a Sustainable Earth" is written to address the concerned citizen as well as to inspire an exchange of ideas among experts, policy makers, industrial leaders, and the general public.

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Brought to you by Martin Frid at greenz.jp

Tags: Education | Japan

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