Most JTEC panels are asked to evaluate specific technologies, each panel being chosen according to the technical expertise needed to understand and evaluate certain areas. This study, however, needed a group that could cross disciplines and, in addition to being technical, understand research policies and detect subtle sociological and cultural changes. The JTEC team was composed of senior experts, a mix of scientists, engineers, and policy-makers.

The chairman of the panel is Dr. George Gamota, who has been involved with JTEC since its inception in 1983. A physicist and an expert on foreign and domestic research assessments, he has been tracking changes in Japanese science and technology policies for over two decades. Two panelists had served on the earlier ERATO study team in 1988: Drs. John Rowell and Rita Colwell. Rowell, a noted materials expert, is also a technical manager with industrial experience. Colwell, a well-known bioscientist, is President of the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute. By revisiting ERATO after seven years, they were better able to assess the long-term effects of the program. They were also able to revisit some of the people they met on their earlier trip.1

Mr. Paul Herer is Senior Advisor for Planning and Technology Evaluation at NSF. Besides being a senior policy maker in the U.S. government, he brings a unique perspective to the panel. In 1989, he was a Science and Technology Agency (STA) fellow in Japan working at the Research Development Corporation of Japan (JRDC) when ERATO policies were still being formulated. He thus has seen policies being developed and can now observe their impact. Drs. Leo Young and William Bentley are new to ERATO, but each has been able to bring important perspectives. As a former director of defense research, Young brings important knowledge of science policy as well as expertise in electronics and the physical sciences. Bentley is a chemical engineer at the University of Maryland and an expert in biosciences research. The panel also included Drs. David Kahaner, Jay Lee, and Tamami Kusuda. The first two were living in Japan during the JTEC panel's visit, and were able to help not only during this trip but also in preparing information and following up after the visit. Kahaner, a well-known Japan watcher, is an expert on electronics and computers. He is currently director of the Asian Technology Information Program (ATIP). Lee, a mechanical engineer, was an STA fellow in Japan. Kusuda has often traveled to Japan and has been particularly interested in the PRESTO program, an offshoot of ERATO begun in 1991. He recently retired from a senior position at the Asia/Pacific Technology Program in the Department of Commerce, and is now serving as a consultant. In addition, Dr. Alan Engel helped us with planning this study and participated in the visit. Currently ERATO's Overseas Representative, he brought the perspective of a foreigner who has been involved in ERATO projects. Engel was one of the first foreign researchers to join ERATO and has since continued to consult for JRDC on ERATO matters.

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Published: September 1996; WTEC Hyper-Librarian