San Diego’s 12th Annual Kyoto Prize Symposium to Feature "Father of Computer Graphics," Molecular Cell Biologist and Indian Intellectual During Gala and Public Presentations March 12-14

Free transportation available for high school groups to attend Kyoto Prize laureate presentations at SDSU, UC San Diego and USD

SAN DIEGO — (BUSINESS WIRE) — March 4, 2013 — The Inamori Foundation and the Kyoto Symposium Organization today announced the 12th annual Kyoto Prize Symposium, March 12-14, 2013, in San Diego. Honoring the latest winners of Japan’s highest private award for global achievement, the Kyoto Prize Symposium includes a private benefit gala highlighting the laureates' lifetime achievements, followed by free presentations by the laureates that are open to the public March 13-14 (online registration is required at Free transportation to the Symposium events at SDSU, UCSD and USD is available to high school groups through the online registration form.

Dr. Irwin Jacobs, co-founder of QUALCOMM, will reprise his role as honorary chairman of the symposium, which begins with media interviews by appointment at Point Loma Nazarene University, Tuesday, March 12.

“The Kyoto Prize Symposium serves as an extraordinary resource for the San Diego-Baja region and a source of inspiration for our youth,” stated David Doyle, chairman of the non-profit Kyoto Symposium Organization and partner of Morrison Foerster in San Diego. “Each year our community is enriched through the unique presentations by Kyoto Prize laureates — some of the world’s most brilliant pioneers in technology, science and the arts.”

Six high school seniors — three each from San Diego and Tijuana — will be honored as recipients of the 2013-2014 Kyoto Scholarships, given to students who have been inspired by the laureates to better society through their life’s work. Valued at $10,000 each, these scholarships will be presented in the categories of advanced technology, basic sciences, and arts and philosophy. The scholarships are funded by the benefit gala, “The Kyoto Prize: Celebrating Outstanding Lifetime Achievement,” which opens the Symposium on March 12 at 5:30 p.m. at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront hotel. Tickets are available at $300 per seat. Chair of the Opening Ceremonies and Scholarship Gala is Masashi Oka, president and CEO of Union Bank.

The 28th Kyoto Prize Laureates

• Advanced Technology: Dr. Ivan Edward Sutherland, 74 (computer scientist; citizenship: U.S.).

Sutherland is a visiting scientist at Portland State University with prior leadership positions in private industry and DARPA. His 50-year career of innovation in computer science began with his 1963 invention of Sketchpad, a breakthrough application that opened new ways for humans to interact with computers. Years ahead of its time, Sketchpad served as the conceptual progenitor to the “graphical user interface” used in everything from today’s smartphones to computer workstations. His work has supported applications ranging from operating systems to video editing, animation, 3-D modeling and virtual reality. Sutherland will speak at San Diego State University, 10:00-11:30 a.m., Wed., March 13.

• Basic Sciences: Dr. Yoshinori Ohsumi, 67 (molecular cell biologist; citizenship: Japan).

A scientist, researcher and professor at Tokyo Institute of Technology, Ohsumi has made groundbreaking contributions to the life sciences by demonstrating how a living cell can degrade its own proteins in order to adapt to nutritional deficiency or other environmental influences. This phenomenon, known as autophagy, is now recognized as a vital cell-recycling system that may aid in future treatments for conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, cancer and other age-related ailments. Ohsumi will speak at University of California San Diego, 3:30-5:00 p.m., Wed., March 13.

Arts and Philosophy: Prof. Gayatri Spivak, Ph.D., 70 (literary critic and educator; citizenship: India).

An Indian intellectual, activist and University Professor at Columbia University, Spivak champions those within our globalized society ― especially women, minorities, the working class and new immigrants ― who have been deprived of their voice and their history through unseen structures of oppression. She is perhaps best known for her essay, “Can the Subaltern Speak?,” a landmark text in the study of post-colonialism. She plans to donate a portion of her prize funds to rural education in India. Spivak will speak at University of San Diego, 10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., Thurs., March 14.

The Kyoto Prize

The Kyoto Prize is presented each year by Japan’s non-profit Inamori Foundation to individuals and groups worldwide who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to the betterment of society, in “Advanced Technology,” “Basic Sciences,” and “Arts and Philosophy.” The prize consists of academic honors, a gold medal, and a cash gift of 50 million yen per category, making it Japan’s highest private award for global achievement.

The Inamori Foundation

The non-profit Inamori Foundation was established in Kyoto, Japan, in 1984 by Dr. Kazuo Inamori, a humanitarian and founder of both Kyocera (NYSE: KYO) and KDDI Corporation. Dr. Inamori created the Kyoto Prize in reflection of his belief that human beings have no higher calling than to strive for the greater good of society, and that mankind’s future can be assured only when there is a balance between science, technology and the human spirit.

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