This adventure started in January 1997 when I received a telephone call from Professor Makoto Konagai of Tokyo Institute of Technology. Professor Konagai asked me if I would like to become a member of the Oyo Buturi Journal Editorial Committee. Feeling honoured, I accepted the invitation with alacrity, although not knowing quite what to expect.

It was in a Committee meeting in June 1997, that it first occurred to me that the Oyo Buturi Journal could make an even greater contribution to the global understanding of science and technology by including a section in English that could act as a forum for reflecting on the nature of the relationship between science and society. So, later that summer, I made official my proposal to include such a section and Professor Konagai asked me to prepare a first draft. I submitted a draft and the concept was approved by the JSAP Board of Directors. After that, things moved very quickly, the first step being to name the section and assemble an editorial committee.

The Editorial Committee of the "Oyo-Buturi International" (OBI) section consists of members from six countries, each having an in-depth knowledge of science and technology and related international issues. This Committee provides the energy and is the driving force behind OBI. It is a pleasure to work with such an opinionated and creative group of people.

The first OBI meeting was held in July 1997 at the JSAP Editorial Office in Kudanshita. Fortunately, Ms Kayoko Itoh and Mr Yoshihiro Karigome of the JSAP Editorial Staff were on hand to give advice about the realities of publishing. We talked about technology and earthquake prediction, scientists and engineers, education, liquid nitrogen and ice cream; it was a lively meeting and the minutes were difficult to write!

The roles of the OBI Editorial Committee are many and varied. However, each member also has specific responsibilities: Johan Bergquist manages the DTP and internet technology; Robin Sowden is responsible for the final proof reading and critical review of the contents; David Heard undertakes the macroscopic proof reading; Francis Saba, Adarsh Sandhu, Tanya Sienko and Miwako Waga compile the Scientific Japanese section; interviews of leading figures in the world of science an technology have been carried out by the Chairman and Govind Pindoria.

The newest member of the OBI group is "Sentan-Kun", or Mr Leading Edge. His cartoons will highlight aspects of life in Japan and the often inexplicable traits of scientists world-wide. I am grateful to Tim Ernst for his skills in turning an idea into a visual reality. OBI is designed to be interactive and I invite you to comment on its style and content. In particular, suggestions for enlivening the `.dot', `Science and Technology News', and `Publications' sections will be most welcome. Finally, on behalf of all the OBI Editorial Committee members, I would like to thank Professor Makoto Konagai for his continuous support and encouragement during the planning stages. OBI would not have been possible without his enthusiasm and foresight.

Welcome to the Oyo-Buturi International!

Adarsh Sandhu
Oyo-Buturi International Editorial Committee