Director's Corner

US-Japan symposium

and | 3 March 2016


Hon. Shionoya is recommending the Kasoku Kids cartoon book to the roundtable discussion chaired by Dr. William Schneider, Jr. (Hudson Institute)

As is well known, the International Linear Collider (ILC) is being discussed as an International project, which means many countries around the world would contribute human, technical, and financial resources to the project. This is clearly a very complicated proposition and it takes effort from many directions to keep it moving.

Recently, three Diet Members and leaders of the Federation of Diet Members to Promote ILC in Japan, Mr. Ryu Shionoya, Mr. Shunichi Suzuki, and Mr. Taku Otsuka visited Washington DC to meet their US counterparts  as well as officials of Department of Energy (DOE) to discuss a closer US-Japan collaboration in science and technology, including the ILC. On the first day there was a reception at the Congressional building. Unfortunately it was scheduled at the time of an important vote in the House, so attendance by Congress staff was very poor. Fortunately there was a reception at the Residence of the Japanese Ambassador on the same evening where attendance by US administrative officials was much better.

An important meeting took place on 12 February where the three Diet members met Dr. Cherry Murray, Director of the Office of Science of DOE, Dr. James Siegrist, Director of the High Energy Physics, as well as Mr. Hiroshi Ikukawa, Deputy Director of the Research Promotion Bureau in MEXT (Ministry for Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology).

At this meeting, there was broad agreement that the discussions on ILC participation by the US should proceed bilaterally rather than trying to involve all potential partners at the same table from the beginning. (It does not preclude a separate discussion between European countries and Japan.) There were active discussions about the issues concerning governance of such a large-scale international project, and possible formation of a “Discussion Group” between DOE and MEXT about this. It was clearly identified that Dr. Murray and Mr. Ikukawa would be the proper counterparts for further discussions.

There was also a separate meeting between US and Japanese scientists organised by the Hudson Institute. Both sides reiterated enthusiasm for the ILC project, citing community studies such as Snowmass and the P5 report as examples. The physics case remains as strong as ever. In particular, given the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012, this is a rare occasion when we know exactly what machine to build to guarantee exciting physics results.

Lyn Evans

Lyn Evans (CERN) is the Linear Collider Director.

Hitoshi Murayama

Hitoshi Murayama leads the Physics and Detectors efforts as WG3 Chair of the ILC International Development Team.
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