I was warmly welcomed into my host supervisor’s group within the School of Environment and Society at Tokyo Institute of Technology during March 2018. My month-long research placement taught me a great deal about the Japanese energy sector and some of the ways the country has changed since the 2011 earthquake and resultant nuclear accident. Additionally, I observed some of the differences with regards to working in an academic environment in Japan. Hamish

The staff and students of the group were working on a variety of challenges around engineering for development, and also on some of the social aspects of environmental challenges. They were incredibly interesting to talk to and bounce ideas off. My focus while I was there was understanding how renewable energy is making Japan more resilient in the wake of the 2011 Tsunami. It was fascinating to see how decentralised energy has been implemented in certain affected communities, aiming to allow essential services reliant on power to continue to operate if another disaster of the same magnitude happens again. I interviewed people in business, academia and government to understand the opportunities and barriers for low-carbon distributed energy. I made many friends and contacts during my short stay in Japan and I hope that it is just the beginning of a long collaboration with Tokyo Institute of Technology.                                                                                                                                                  

"The staff and students of the group were working on a variety of challenges around engineering for development, and also on some of the social aspects of environmental challenges. They were incredibly interesting to talk to and bounce ideas off."                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hamish Beath