Opening up the Future at the Crossroads of Science and the Arts: A symposium commemorating the partnership between RIKEN and the Tokyo University of the Arts
On Sunday, November 15, the Tokyo University of the Arts (TUA) and the Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (known as RIKEN) held a joint symposium at our university's Sogakudo Concert Hall commemorating the partnership and joint efforts between the two institutes. Entitled "Opening up the Future at the Crossroads of Science and the Arts," this symposium is based on a March 24, 2009 agreement by RIKEN and TUA concerning the partnership and joint efforts between the two institutes in an alliance intended to provide our society with spiritual enrichment and hope for the future. The symposium got underway with a fanfare delivered by our students, followed by greetings from TUA trustee/vice president Kenji Watanabe and RIKEN executive director Kenji Okuma. The first half of the symposium featured dialogues between our teaching staff and RIKEN's researchers on three themes: sound, cultural property, and beauty. Along with introductions to their own research fields, the participants enthusiastically discussed the potential for establishing science and the arts, two fields of endeavor that have developed separately, on a common research field. The second half of the event began with a string quintet performed by our students, followed by a three-person discussion involving TUA president Ryohei Miyata, RIKEN president Ryoji Noyori, and Susumu Tonegawa, director of the RIKEN Brain Science Institute. After reaffirming the close ties binding the arts and sciences and their role as the foundations for future social developments, efforts to advance the newly-formed alliance were proudly proclaimed.