Scientific Research: Opening the Door to the Future
2. The Environment for Scientific Research
(3) The Science and Technology Basic Law and the Science and Technology Basic Plan - Establishing a Nation Based on the Creativity of Science and Technology
Growing awareness of the importance of science and technology, as well as changes in the world situation, Ied to the Science and Technology Basic Law, which was proposed by Diet members and passed unanimously by the Diet in November 1995. As stated in the first article of the new law, its objective is "to achieve a higher standard of science and technology (hereinafter referred to as 'S&T'), to contribute to the development of the economy and society in Japan and to the improvement of the welfare of the nation, as well as to contribute to the progress of S&T in the world and the sustainable development of human society." In July 1996 the Science and Technology Basic Plan, which is based on the Science and Technology Basic Law, was adopted by cabinet decision. This plan provides a framework for comprehensive and systematic efforts to establish a nation based on the creativity of science and technology. One of the most important priorities in this program is the reinforcement of basic and creative research and development activities. Universities, as the leading centers for basic research, will have a very important role to play.