Greetings from the New President

Masahiro Morikura
President, IEICE Communications Society
Professor, Kyoto University, Japan

Junji NAMIKI

 


It is my great honor to serve as president of the IEICE Communications Society (IEICE-CS), which is the largest society in IEICE, and a place where many excellent researchers and engineers from academia and industry actively pursue their goals. Specifically, it is the responsibility of IEICE-CS to promote research and development in electronics, information, and communication fields, and also to educate and nurture researchers and engineers. Consequently, it can be said that IEICE-CS fosters vibrant technical committees, and the activities conducted within the society contribute greatly to the progress of research on a global scale. Building on this success, I promise to do my best to further improve IEICE-CS activities and to increase their value for IEICE-CS members.

IEICE has recently reported a decrease in both its number of members and its finances; however, various methods can be employed to rectify this situation and revitalize and enhance the academic activities and technical capabilities of IEICE-CS.

I believe that the strength of IEICE-CS lies in its ability to continuously find means of improving equipment and systems for each new generation of communication technologies; furthermore, it has also proven to be adept in regard to human-resource development, which is consistently conducted, from seniors to juniors, within the society. On the other hand, it seems that the society’s power to create new, paradigm-shifting technology is currently insufficient. This form of technology concerns the combination of multiple technical fields and elements to establish new technical fields that are not bound by conventional boundaries. Consequently, it is important for universities and academic societies to cultivate human resources that have the ability to generate and understand such technology. To expand on this last point, I would now like to present three points regarding the qualities that should be instilled in such human resources.

(1) Strong curiosity
In 2005, the book “The World is Flat” by Thomas Friedman included the formula: “CQ (curiosity quotient) + PQ (passion quotient) > IQ (intelligence quotient).” The meaning of this formula is that successful research-and-development engineers possess more curiosity and enthusiasm than ordinary people. In other words, even a person with a high IQ cannot outperform an individual who constantly ponders research subjects and has strong curiosity in their field. In order to foster such human resources, special education systems must be implemented in academic societies; such systems will facilitate the fostering of engineers and researchers who can make remarkable achievements in activities related to science and engineering.

(2) The ability to cope with environmental changes
Dr. Charles Darwin, who advocated the theory of evolution, developed the concept of “survival of the fittest.” This concept can also be applied to engineering, as it is a discipline that concerns creating new technologies to solve society’s problems. Societal problems change as time passes, and it is not always possible to address these problems using traditional academic frameworks. In order to solve future societal problems, it is necessary to engage in cross-disciplinary activities that transcend clearly divided areas of expertise; consequently, I believe that it is important to promote such activities within IEICE-CS.

(3) Different senses of values
In order to make new discoveries and obtain new knowledge, it is important to interact with people who have different ideas and who are from different fields; globalization facilitates such interactions by making exchanges with overseas researchers and students possible. However, a clear obstacle in regard to creating diversified networks of engineers in IEICE-CS is that there are very few female electric and electronic researchers in the society. As a result, I believe that it is important to encourage and develop more female researchers; after all, half of the consumers of products and services are women. In order to increase the number of female researchers, it is necessary to change various social systems which, unfortunately, is a relatively difficult task.

The three points mentioned above reflect my opinion on the qualities new human resources should possess in order to accommodate the needs of future societies. I would also like to add that I believe that it is important that young people who wish challenge new research fields that cannot be categorized under existing academic systems are not impeded.

I wish to conclude this greeting message by asking all of you to continue to lend your kind support to IEICE-CS activities.