1,100 workers needed per year for construction

The original article was published in the Iwate Nippo. Read the original here.

-Working group within MEXT’s ILC Panel of Experts
Preliminary written report on securing human resources:
Stressing the importance of cultivating young workers

A panel of experts, run by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), has been deliberating on the various challenges associated with the International Linear Collider (ILC). Within that panel is a working group tasked with reviewing policy on securing and training human resources. They met on the 20th to put together a draft for the panel. They stated that during the construction phase of the ILC, an average of around 1,100 researchers, engineers, and other workers will be needed per year for parts manufacturing, coordination, and other duties. The group stressed the need for the strategic training and securement of human resources, including young people. The written report will be released publically after discussions on July 7th with the panel of experts.

The report draft is based on the ILC Technical Design Report, and states that an average of 1,124 people will be needed for each year of the 9 years of construction. The 5th year of construction will require a peak of around 1,589 people. These workers would be researchers, engineers and others who will manufacture accelerator parts and do coordination work; the total does not include workers needed for tunnel construction and other civil engineering work. Additionally, it is presumed that installing the parts at the ILC site will take 7 years, and will require an average of 479 workers per year.

The draft also brings up training workers within the particle accelerator field. Young workers will have fewer chances to work on other new projects as the ILC will be so huge and span over so much time. The working group points out that at current levels, there would be not enough workers if the ILC is realized. There is a need to strengthen the base of accelerator-industry workers on a national level.

To counter this, they proposed training young workers by dispatching them to repair and upgrade facilities throughout Japan and the rest of the world, which would give them real-world experience. Another suggestion would be to appoint young workers to senior positions on new accelerator projects. The group also stressed how important it is to create an environment that includes support for living in the area, as we look ahead to new networks between domestic accelerator facilities and the arrival of foreign workers in the area.

The working group is made up of 11 researchers from universities and companies who have been deliberating on policies for securing and cultivating workers for the ILC since 2015. Leading the group is Takashi Nakano, the director of the Research Center for Nuclear Physics of Osaka University. Nakano said, “It has become clear what kind of workers are needed to build the ILC. We have received various specific ideas about how to move forward, and we have proceeded constructively with our deliberations.”

The decision by the national government on whether or not to host the ILC will take into account the deliberations taken by the panel of experts. The decision is presumed to be made around the end of fiscal year 2017 or within fiscal year 2018.