On the occasion of a meeting on 5 May in Bern, Mauro Dell’Ambrogio, State Secretary for Education, Research and Innovation, and Toshiei Mizuochi, State Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan, reviewed the ongoing cooperation between Switzerland and Japan in the field of science and technology. Both parties confirmed that the collaborations have been highly successful and the partnership could be strengthened in the future.
The meeting between Mr. Dell’Ambrogio and Mr. Mizuochi led to the signing of a declaration of intent that would lay the foundation for closer and simplified direct cooperation between the research funding agencies of both countries, namely the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) and the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST).
Switzerland and Japan has an agreement on bilateral scientific cooperation which was concluded in 2007. Under this agreement, a strategic program to fund joint research projects was implemented between JST and ETH Zurich as the Leading House agency for Japan. As a result, 13 joint projects have been funded through four calls between 2008 and 2012, with workshops and exchange grants also being supported through 2016.
The Swiss and Japanese funding agencies have been working more closely together in order to find sustainable ways of cooperation. SNSF and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) have made a call for joint research projects last year. As for the new call by SNSF and JST, the topics and timetable for the first tender, which will serve as a pilot, will be determined in the coming months.