A group of 40 first year students and 2 teachers from Tochigi Prefectural Senior High School visited JIRCAS through the "Tsukuba Science Tour" program on November 11, 2021. This was the second visit from the school since November last year. As a safety measure against COVID-19, the students were divided into two groups for introduction of JIRCAS research initiatives (indoor lecture) and introduction of rice samples at the Hachimandai Experimental Field (outdoor lecture).
In the indoor lecture, Dr. IZUMI Taro (Project Leader, Climate change measures in Monsoon Asia) and Mr. UNO Kenichi (Senior Researcher, Rural Development Division), introduced the approach to climate change from agriculture and the water management technology for rice paddies that leads to the reduction of greenhouse gases, with a case study of the Mekong Delta in Vietnam as an example of the JIRCAS project in the Environment Program.
At the Hachimandai Experimental Field, Dr. SASAKI Kazuhiro (Researcher, Biological Resources and Post-harvest Division) gave an outdoor lecture and explained about rice plants grown in the tropics and in Japan, and the students observed the characteristics of various rice samples.
The number of students entering doctoral programs at graduate schools in Japan has been on a downward trend since 2003. We hope that some of the students who experienced this visit and exercise will become young researchers who will lead the future of science and technology in Japan.