Inaugural Greetings from the President
-Prof. Keiichi Hori,
The president of the Japan Explosives Society.

ChairmanDear esteemed members of Japan Explosives Society, it is a great honor to be appointed as the President of the Society.

I joined the society in 1982, in which year I was assigned to Iwama Laboratory of the then Institute of Space and Astronautical Science under the Ministry of Education as the first-year postgraduate student. The society was called the Industrial Explosives Society at the time, when the collaboration and friendly competition between the industry and universities was stronger. Later, however, the economy went into a nationwide and extensive stagnation, during which companies started to streamline their businesses and exclusively focus on activities that may directly result in product development. These changes have eventually led to the revision in the Engineering Award two years ago. I am hoping that the revision effectively boosts corporate engineers' motivations.

Obviously, this is not the only change the society went through. There have been a number of reforms in the past several years. And I would like to continue the efforts of my predecessors, Prof. Atsumi Miyake and Prof. Mitsuru Arai, who steered the society towards reform. Since the last presidential term, the society have been appointing corporate representatives as the Vice President to reinforce industry-academia collaboration. For the last four years (two terms), Mr. Nobuhisa Nakano, the then President of Kayaku Japan Co., Ltd., took the office of the Vice President. His viewpoint as the company manager was very fresh and educational for someone like us, whose backgrounds are exclusively academic. For this term, we will have the valuable assistance of Mr. Hisashi Maekawa at Asahi Kasei Corporation as the Vice President. I am very much looking forward to working together with Mr. Maekawa in exploring new ways of industry-academia cooperation. For the post of Vice President representing academic institutions, we have invited Prof. Akiko Matsuo at Keio University to assume the office. I am counting on Prof. Matsuo as the chair of the executive committee of International Symposium on Energetic Materials and their Applications (ISEM) 2021, an international conference the society hosts in November 2021. I will join her in our collective commitment to the further promotion of High Energetic Materials research.

As I write this message, Japan has just managed to suppress the first wave of COVID-19 following the successful containment of the pandemic in China and South Korea. The first wave has been losing momentum also in the Western countries, but Latin America and Africa are still bracing for uncertain future. My current presidential term shall probably be completely occupied with pandemic responses. To be honest, there is no other way to manage this unprecedented situation than carefully handling each and every challenge we face along the way. I am sincerely hoping that, one day, we can look back on our present struggle and remark, "Oh yes, that was a hard time indeed!" with a smile.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics will take place in July and August next year. We can surely bring it to a success so long as everyone in Japan joins forces and works together as a team. I am also hoping to successfully hold ISEM2021 in the warmth of remaining excitement brought forth by the Olympics and Paralympics. The success of ISEM will internationally boost our significance in the academic forum and immensely impress younger people. Your support is indispensable in bringing the event to a success. I appreciate your guidance and support in this regard.

The success of ISEM, of course, is not our final goal. Our priority remains the close collaborations of industries and academia. Through the cooperation, research activities at respective institutions are facilitated, which will eventually lead to the advancement of domestic academic societies and ultimately the international forum. The impact factor of our journal, Science and Technology of Energetic Materials (STEM), would increase and further boost our society's international presence. While my vision may sound overblown, I will take actions step by step under the theme of "strengthening the industry-academia collaboration" together with you. The two-year term may pass by like a flash if I leisurely remain in my post. I will work together with you and do whatever I can, no matter how small contribution I may make, to bring a brighter future to the Explosives Society. Thank you very much for your invaluable support.

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