The Japanese Society of Bioinformatics (JSBi) was founded in 1999 for promoting researches and educational activities on bioinformatics as well as for promoting the relevant technologies and industries in Japan. JSBi tries to enhance international relationship as a member of AASBi and an affiliated regional group of ISCB (International Society for Computational Biology). The Society’s membership mainly consists of regular (individual) members and supporting (corporate) members. Their numbers are 630 for regular members and 34 for supporting members (at Jan. 30, 2007).
The most important event of the Society is the General Meeting, which is held once a year and to which all the members are requested to participate. Until 2006, the General Meeting had been held as a part of an international meeting (GIW). Since GIW becomes an official meeting of AASBi from 2007, the General Meeting will be held independently in Japan. However, its official language will continue to be English and participants from outside Japan are welcome.
Two important activities of JSBi are the activity of Special Interest Groups (SIGs) and that of (regional) Working Groups. Each SIG has its own chief-editor and steering committee. Usually, each SIG holds its own meeting, where JSBi members can attend freely, listen to invited talks, and sometimes present their own research results. The Working Groups have been set up for the benefit of JSBi members who live relatively far from Tokyo because many SIG meetings are held in Tokyo or its suburbs. Currently, there are five Working Groups in various areas of Japan and their existence will stimulate the local activities on bioinformatics.
Other activities include the proposal of a standard curriculum for bioinformatics education in universities and graduate schools and the editing of an encyclopedia of bioinformatics (in Japanese). The encyclopedia, written by hundreds of JSBi members and researchers in related areas, was published by Kyoritsu Shuppan. Co. Ltd. in 2006. Newsletters are delivered to JSBi members twice a year. Summer schools for students and young scientists are organized and financially supported annually by JSBi.