Message from the Panel

  • Question: Top-down vs Bottom-up?

  • Transdisciplinary Collaboration

  • Transformative Energy Technologies

  • Sustainable and Safe Energy Supply with Least Environmental Impact

  • Green Growth and Environmental Sustainability

  • Example: University of Michigan 2014

  • New Digital Tools Helps Integrating Different Disciplines at Schools



  • Question: Top-down vs Bottom-up?

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    Professor Nobuhide Kasagi: Okay. Since the timing is running out, I would like to summarize the discussion here. The organizing committee decided to hold this panel in the International Heat Transfer Conference almost a couple years ago. We first decided to invite Professor Yoshikawa to give a lecture on the relationship between science and society. To my knowledge, there has been no so such lecture in the Heat Transfer Conference before. So, we wanted to introduce some new culture or a new way of thinking to the thermal science research community, particularly to stimulate younger people. By talking with Professor Yoshikawa, we decided to hold this followup panel. And almost a year ago, I started to prepare for this panel. Fortunately, these five panelists accepted to work with me, and over the last several months, perhaps since the beginning of this year, we exchanged numerous emails to exchange our views focusing on the issues we have to discuss here at the panel. And even after coming to Kyoto, we had a meeting together and discussed the issues we faced too.

    The messages I’m going to show you are the temporary agreed messages among the panelists and the moderator. We are going to take the comments and the messages from the floor as well as discussants today. We will finalize the messages from this panel to transfer to the next International Heat Transfer Conference in Beijing. We also hope that everybody here to bring this back to your country and start your own discussion on this very important issue, the science for society.



    Transdisciplinary Collaboration

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    Let me briefly quickly introduce the messages. The first message is of course the need for transdisciplinary collaboration and thermal science to meet the societal challenges. Integration of fundamental sciences with other disciplines – applied energy research material science and so forth – is definitely needed for innovative and holistic solutions. Transdisciplinary research according to Peter’s honest presentation is quite complex and has some positive as well as negative aspects, which we should overcome. Good balance of course is necessary for top-down and bottom-up schemes.



    Transformative Energy Technologies

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    Message from Dimos Poulikakos is the focus on transformative energy technologies beyond pure heat transfer science. This is where we can extend our future where we have a perspective in the future. The pathway to a sustainable energy future will include the deployment of transformative/disruptive technologies. The development of such technology requires a holistic way of thinking across disciplines, like Peter’s comments, according to accounting for socioeconomical as well as geophysical and political realities. The heat transfer community must define and claim its role in the competitive field transformative energy technologies.



    Sustainable and Safe Energy Supply with Least Environmental Impact

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    The further message is thermal science needs to be deployed to enable sustainable and safe energy supply vis-a-vis implemental impact. This is the common wish of human beings on the planet. Thermal science must play leadership in environmental studies through work with exports and environmental science and interact with government to guide policy. We should lead collaboration with material scientists and the industry to develop cost-effective methods for energy storage and implementing renewable energy systems. We should make a major thrust for reducing energy consumption and the optimization of the system with the support from industry. We should get strongly involved in safety issues as well related to power generation and utilization. This is a very important issue after the recent disaster of Fukushima in Japan.



    Green Growth and Environmental Sustainability

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    Another message is our possible contribution to green growth and environmental sustainability. It’s necessary to carefully identify the upbringing technologies in thermal engineering for potential Korean technology businesses. And a strategic program should be developed for the high quality research output from university to covert to tangible asset and finally to the successful businesses. To create new growth engines and, again, an intergraded approach is necessary where we coordinate R&D in business and strategy education, technology transfer for commercialization, and industrial collaboration with the research institutions.



    Renovation of Teaching

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    Finally, this is also very important, the innovation of teaching thermal science – and this is actually an urgent matter. Students, faculty, and administrators work together to fully exploit new digital technologies for faster information flow, interactive communication involving curricula with less cost – thanks to the digital technologies. Also, it is important to create global knowledge capital for thermal science. This is a global knowledge, which is beneficial for all countries on the planet. We should continuously create an environment to teach thermal science to not only scientists but also the public and also maybe younger kids – children.



    Renovation of Teaching

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    And finally, as we discussed, in many countries issue-driven R&D strategy is deployed, but it should be better balanced to seed-push strategy in meeting societal challenges. Identifying societal issues from traditional disciplinary boundary and the institutional interest is possible through issue-driven R&D strategy. And in that case, science and technology goals can be defined clearly in terms of resolving the existing societal issues and implementing functions needed in the future society to justify public funding. Again, it is important to cultivate cross-disciplinary science and induce dynamic interaction between basic and engineering sciences. And finally, it is important to promote collaboration – this is not a new issue – of industry-academia-government leading to innovation. These are almost all what I wanted transfer from the panel.

    Thank you very much for coming to this panel, spending more than two hours with us. I would like to thank all panelists for their great contribution to the panel as well as discussants and all questioners or commentators for this discussion. Well, thank you very much again, and I’m closing this panel.

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