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Filter by author: Kazuto Kato

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4 publications found

Nov 28, 2011 Article
Scientists' attitudes toward a dialogue with the public: a study using "science cafes"

by Eri Mizumachi, Kentaro Matsuda, Kei Kano, Masahiro Kawakami and Kazuto Kato

Currently, science is developing rapidly and its influence on society is more significant than ever. This is all the more reason for today’s scientists to interact with the general public. To design effective science communication activities, we must understand scientists’ motivations and barriers to publicly communicating science. In this study, we interviewed 19 early-career scientists who had participated in science cafes in Japan. From these interviews, we identified five factors leading to their reluctance to participate in science cafes: 1) troublesome or time-consuming; 2) pressure to be an appropriate science representative; 3) outside the scope of their work; 4) could not perceive any benefit; and 5) apprehension about dialogue with the public. Among these factors, apprehension about dialogue may be the clearest reflection of the scientists’ underlying feelings about this form of communication and an indicator of more intrinsic barriers to engaging in science cafes.

Volume 10 • Issue 04 • 2011

May 23, 2011 Article
What are the features of non-expert opinions on regenerative medicine? Opinion analysis of workshop participants

by Chie Nakagawa, Ekou Yagi and Kazuto Kato

Regenerative medicine (RM) has the potential to strongly impact on society. To determine non-experts’ impressions of RM, we analyzed opinions obtained from workshops in which participants freely discussed RM. Three major features were apparent. First, non-experts were most concerned with the possible effects of RM after it has been fully realized in society. Second, non-experts expressed concerns not only about RM itself, but also about the governance and operation of the technology. Third, non-experts were not only concerned about direct influences of RM, but also about its potential indirect influences. These identified features are likely to be controversial issues when RM is introduced into society. It is important to promote early discussion of these issues by society as a whole.

Volume 10 • Issue 02 • 2011

Jan 26, 2009 Article
Mouse model: what do Japanese life sciences researchers mean by this term?

by Jin Higashijima, Kae Takahashi and Kazuto Kato

Mouse-related research in the life sciences has expanded remarkably over the last two decades, resulting in growing use of the term “mouse model”. Our interviews with 64 leading Japanese life sciences researchers showed heterogeneities in the definition of “mouse model” in the Japanese life sciences community. Here, we discuss the implications for the relationship between the life sciences community and society in Japan that may result from this ambiguity in the terminology. It is suggested that, in Japanese life sciences, efforts by individual researchers to make their scientific information unambiguous and explanative are necessary.

Volume 8 • Issue 01 • 2009

Jun 20, 2008 Article
Analysis of Japanese newspaper articles on genetic modification

by Ryuma Shineha, Aiko Hibino and Kazuto Kato

The rapid spread of technologies involving the application of “Genetic Modification (GM)” raised the need for science communication on this new technology in society. To consider the communication on GM in the society, an understanding of the current mass media is required. This paper shows the whole picture of newspaper discourses on GM in Japan. For the Japanese public, newspapers represent one of the major sources of information on GM. We subjected the two Japanese newspapers with the largest circulation, the Asahi Shimbun and Yomiuri Shimbun, to an analysis of the full text of approximately 4000 articles on GM published over the past to perform an assessment of the change of reportage on GM. As for the most important results, our analysis shows that there are two significant shifts with respect to the major topics addressed in articles on GM by Japanese newspapers.

Volume 7 • Issue 02 • 2008