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The 13th Kyoto University Global Environmental Forum Living with Risks

Date: July 14, 2012
Venue: International Exchange Hall III, Clock Tower Centennial Hall, Kyoto University, Japan

Organized by:
Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, Kyoto University

Co-organized by:
Global COE Program “Global Center for Education and Research on Human Security Engineering for Asian Megacities”

Number of attendants: approximately 70

Report 214


We are living in a society with various types of risks: natural disasters, radioactive materials, safety of foods, disruption of ecosystems, and traffic accidents. How should deal with these risks? How should we understand risk information provided through mass media? The aim of this forum is to address these questions. After the four presentations, a panel discussion was held for further discussion.


First, Assoc. Prof. Yamazaki talked about risks and statistics in medical science. Especially, he addressed confounding factors and how to understand results from epidemiological studies. Then, Assoc. Prof. Echigo made a presentation on the risks associated with drinking water. His focus was risk trade-off between chemical risks and microbiological risks. Assoc. Prof. Tanaka made a presentation on ecological risks. He talked about the restoration project of the natural environment in Lake Biwa, as an example. Lastly, Prof. Kikkwa talked about risk communication. Her topic ranged from food safety to radioactive materials.
In the following panel discussion, the panel received many questions from the audience. These questions ranged from specific risks such as drinking water quality to risk communication. It was a great opportunity for us to exchange information and opinions on various issues related to risks.