My name is Tetsuro Mimura, and I am a Professor at the Kobe University Graduate School of Science. It was a great honor to be appointed as president of the Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists at the annual meeting in Sapporo, for the two years beginning March, 27th 2018, and to follow in the footsteps of my predecessor, Prof. Hiroo Fukuda.
Since 1982 when thirty-six years ago my first paper was published in Plant and Cell Physiology, my own research has undoubtedly benefited in the intervening years from the many valuable discussions at the annual meetings and through papers published in PCP.
Moreover, the opportunity to interact with many colleagues from neighboring fields in the steering committee of the JSPP has also helped widen my horizons. I would like to use my term as a president to give back to the organization that has provided me with much support over the length of my career.
So far, the previous Executive Committees, led by Prof. Ikuko Hara-Nishimura and Prof. Fukuda achieved in carrying on the various efforts to internationalize the society. A prime example of these endeavors is Taiwan- Japan Plant Biology (TJPB) 2017 held in Taipei in last November, in which a Japanese contingent of nearly 300 interacted with Taiwanese researchers and students. Moving forward, I believe that sustaining and further developing the momentum of this internationalization is one of our major duties. The second international symposium will be held to coincide with next year’s annual conference (which also marks the society’s 60th founding anniversary) in Nagoya, and together with local members, we are getting ready to welcome a large contingent from Taiwan. We will strive to promote broader interaction with colleagues from around the world.
The publication of PCP is the other our most important core task—indeed, the society was supposedly established for that very purpose. We surely be proud of PCP’s global status as an academic journal established by the founders’ constant endeavor, and it now plays a central role in the society’s activities. Moreover, since PCP mainly funds our activities, the journal’s development is a primary concern of JSPP. As we explore ways of transitioning to an online journal, the cooperation of the JSPP membership is quite important.
At present, we are making solid progress in transforming the JSPP’s annual conferences into international events and publishing PCP. Such achievements are made possible by the proactive involvement of the society’s membership. As Japan’s population continues to decline, we cannot consider ourselves immune to that trend. We must, therefore, consider what is necessary to maintain the integrity of the society’s activities.
Post-doctoral and tenured employment remains a major issue, but we live in an age when many young Japanese researchers now have their own laboratories at overseas institutions and, indeed, a number of JSPP members are pursuing their research in this way. Information about these can be found in the Gakkai Tsushin newsletter. We must, therefore, figure out how the society can offer support to those people, and to those who may follow them. Giving future messages to junior high school, high school, and undergraduate students who hold an interest in basic plant science, is also an important mission for the society.
My hope as president is that together, through the diligent efforts of the Steering Committee and the cooperation of the entire membership, we can achieve steady, incremental progress in these endeavors.
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