Interim report of "Innovation 25" 2007/02/28
Recently, the interim report "Innovation 25" was presented. We had received high expectations and a lot of support from various sectors including http://dndi.jp, which created some pressure, and there was some difficulty to bring it to completion. This interim report is unusual as this kind of report. It starts as a message from Ms. Sanae Takaichi, Minister of State for Innovation and continues to a day in the life of the Innove Family (an image of Japanese family in 2025). Afterwards, I explain my fundamental policies as a chairperson and the normal report follows.
The focus of the report is on the innovation of science and technology and the development of society and the social system. This development will require the cultivation of human resources. How to promote these priorities together is the agenda of this report. The immediate policy issues of overriding priority are (1) increased investment for young people, (2) reform of the university system, and (3) making environment issues as an engine for economic growth and international contributions. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has demonstrated his recognition of these three policies as high-priority issues that we need to remedy and directed us to promote these goals.
The reform of the university system was discussed in the Council of Economic and Fiscal Policy on the 27th and I think the councilmen and the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology are of the same opinion. Of course each opinion and viewpoint is different in detail and methodology. Everyone has the perception that the reform of the university systems is a very important pillar of the national policy. Ultimately, the reform of university systems means the Ozumo-nization of the university of which I always speak.
In addition, developed countries have a common perception that the global environment and climate change has risen as a top-priority issue. Not only in EU countries and the UK, but even in the United States, energy and environment has become a top priority as mentioned in President George W. Bush's State of the Union address. Former Vice President Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth won the 2007 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Seeing these movements, the worldwide push for the environmental reform is obvious. Countries are beginning to compete with each other for leadership of the G8 summit this year in Germany and next year in Japan. Japanese leadership and our message concerning environmental problems is going to be challenged by the rest of the world.
For the proposal of Innovation 25, Prime Minister Abe himself stated that we should try to make an environment engine for economic growth and international contributions a top-priority issue. I think this is a very important thing. Related government ministries and agencies will be questioned on how to get public support for this proposal. Information is global and the entire world is watching us.