This is who we 'R':
Get to know BDR and R-CCS researchers!

Questions for Everyone

Have you ever wondered what kinds of people work at RIKEN—what they like to do, for instance, or if they like math and science? Or even if there’s anything they’re particular about? Check out these responses to the get-to-know-you survey from 160 people who work at BDR and R-CCS!

1 Which division are you working in?


23 23 8 15


79 0 0 15

Kobe Administrative Division

0 0 0 17

*Some respondents in the R-CCS research division, R-CCS FLAGSHIP 2020 Project, and the R-CCS operations and computer technologies division categories have multiple affiliations.

  • Research Division
  • FLAGSHIP 2020 Project
  • Operations and Computer Technologies Division
  • Admin

2 Which age group you are in?

13 people in their 20s, 51 in their 30s, 60 in their 40s, 27 in their 50s and above, and 9 in secret.

  • 20s
  • 30s
  • 40s
  • 50s and over
  • Do not want to specify

3 Which prefecture or country are you from?

  • Hyogo
  • Osaka
  • Tokyo
  • Aichi
  • Saitama
  • Kanagawa
  • Fukuoka
  • Chiba
  • Shizuoka
  • Hokkaido
  • Hiroshima
  • Ibaraki
  • Miyagi
  • Kyoto
  • Okayama
  • Mie
  • Fukui
  • Shiga
  • Kumamoto
  • Kagawa
  • Wakayama
  • Yamanashi
  • Yamaguchi
  • Yamagata
  • Nara
  • Nagasaki
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Saga
  • And abroad…*

*Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, India, Italy, Taiwan, United States

4 What is your hobby?

  • Reading
  • Travel
  • Listening to music
  • Sports
  • Foodie/Trying fine food
  • Watching movies
  • Anime, comics
  • Video games, computer games, smartphone games
  • Watching sports
  • Playing a musical instrument
  • Driving a car or riding a motorcycle
  • Climbing, hiking
  • Cycling
  • Photography
  • Gardening and nature
  • Programming
  • Yoga, Pilates
  • Go, shogi, board games
  • Being interested in trains/airplanes
  • Other

What is your hobby? (Fill in the blank.)

Travel and the outdoors: Tourism, mountain climbing, summer festivals, fishing, going to hot springs, going on walks, going on trips to Southeast Asia (though no one can go at the moment), going on trips to beautiful nature areas like geoparks, camping x2, taking care of herbal medicinal plants/succulents/fields, bug collecting, observing and photographing wild animals, hanging out in the jungle on Iriomote island
Games, sports, and exercise: Computer games, table tennis x2, Go, Nintendo Switch, tennis x2, futsal, judo, ball-based sports, golf, internet gaming, board games, Koshien baseball tournament, watching the NBA, muscle training, jogging, billiards, kendo, yoga, supporting the Cerezo Osaka football (soccer) club and secondarily supporting the Kyoto Sanga FC, batting, dance, watching baseball, stretching, watching road bicycle racing
Food and drink: Cooking, alcoholic drinks, craft beer, baking bread, making sweets, trying out all the izakaya pubs in my new neighborhood
Music, arts, crafts, literature, etc.: Seeing plays at a theater, manga, learning French, drawing, reading (science fiction), art appreciation, shigin (a type of Japanese poetry), flower arrangement, electric organ, piano, flute, karaoke, idols (celebrities/pop stars), going to live concerts, exploring bookstores, knitting, sewing, taking photos of railway scenes
Other: Making videos, selecting/buying/repairing used cars, DIY, making electronics and audio equipment, asset management, getting/using points (e.g. on point cards), sleeping for 20 hours, smoking, aroma therapy, cleaning, internet browsing, raising plants and animals
And more!

5 Do you have a pet?

  • I don’t have a pet
  • Goldfish/Tropical fish
  • Cat
  • Dog
  • Insect/bug
  • Other mammal
  • Other fish
  • Turtle/Frog/toad
  • Other
  • Bird
  • Other amphibian

6 What’s your motto?

  • R-CCS research division member, 20s

    Regret what you did do instead of what you didn’t.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s; R-CCS administrative staff; BDR research team member, 40s

    Fortune is unpredictable and changeable.

  • R-CCS research division member, 50s

    Speedy but slapdash work beats slow but polished work.

  • R-CCS Flagship 2020 Project member, 30s

    Don't try - Bukowski

  • R-CCS operations and computer technologies division member

    Be ready at all times.

  • R-CCS administrative staff, 40s

    No rain goes on forever.

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    “Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right.”- Isaac Asimov

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    Be a game changer

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Nature is full of mysteries; there is no end to pursuing them.

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    Every person has a path: even if it’s difficult or different from others’, that path is still yours.

  • Research administrative division member, 40s

    The busier you are, the more meticulous you should be.

  • BDR research team member, 60+

    Always stay positive.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Having joy is more valuable than working hard.

Questions for Researchers and Technicians
who work at BDR (78 people) and R-CCS (30 people)

7 Do you like math? Are you good at it?


37% 40% 20% 0% 3%


18% 47% 22% 0% 13%
  • I like it and I’m good at it
  • I like it but I’m not good at it
  • I don’t really care, I have no interest in it
  • I don’t like it but I’m good at it
  • I don’t like it and I’m not good at it

If you answered that you like math,
please tell us your favorite kind (s) of math.

Popular responses: differential equations,
linear algebra, geometry, calculus, and factorization. Other responses included:
  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    Probability and statistics, because I need to be able to interpret the essence of all sorts of data in both my work (research and development) and private life (news broadcasts and the like).

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Fourier transform, because I think the wave shape it makes is beautiful and that it’s awesome you can express it as a numerical formula.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    Bayesian inference, because with it you can handle changes to subjective probabilities.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    If I had to give an example, I’d say I like the achievements of and anecdotes (like taxicab numbers) about Srinivasa Ramanujan​. Not just him, but plenty of other mathematical geniuses have amusing anecdotes—Newton, Gauss, Euler, Hamilton, Galois, Seki Takakazu, Neumann, Gödel, Turing, Wiles, and more. When you learn math, you understand how terrifying people like this can be (in a good way).

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    All of mathematics, regardless of type. Though you need training, practice, and talent to understand it, every natural phenomenon uses the common language of math. Math itself can be expressed as a theory on paper and is a tremendously versatile and wide field of study. Without math, we would struggle mightily to understand nature or convey its essence to future generations. It is a truly great invention and branch of learning.

8 What area (s) of science do you like?


Physics 73% Chemistry 30% Biology 23% Geology 17% I don’t particularly like any of
the usual science subjects


Physics 33% Chemistry 36% Biology 76% Geology 14% I don’t particularly like any of
the usual science subjects
If you have a particular area or subject in science you like, what is that area/subject and why?
  • R-CCS research division member, 50s

    I like the relationships between shapes/forms and energy/power that are made on the border of stability and instability.

  • R-CCS operations and computer technologies division member, 50s

    Mechanics, because complex natural phenomena can be written using simple equations.

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    Astronomical observation and dinosaurs—I don’t know why; I just like them.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    Through age 25 I was terrible at and hated physics. I even got zero points on a final exam. It wasn’t until I started studying quantum mechanics on my own and become able to see things through a physics lens that I started to like physics.

  • R-CCS research division member, 40s

    Neuroscience, because it combines biology with AI.

  • BDR research team member, 50s

    Elementary particles and DNA. For their meaning as the foundation of what everything is made up of, and because I feel the mystery of their role as the root of properties that evolve over time.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Ecology, especially for marine life, because I love the ocean. There are more unknowns in the ocean than on land.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    I always loved observing animals ever since I was little.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Organic chemistry, because there is beauty in how carbon atoms connect to form patterns (like benzene rings) while following chemical rules. Though the word “organic” has come to have a nuance of “natural” due to organic farming and agriculture, organic chemistry is a forceful and competitive type of chemistry, which makes it fun.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    Thermodynamics/statistical mechanics, because it seems to have connections to a wide variety of phenomena. I find it interesting that it’s also applied to biological phenomena such as the neutral network.

  • BDR research team member

    Bioinorganic chemistry, because you can explore the mysteries of living organisms using the language of chemistry and learn from the precision of organisms’ functions.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    I love all areas of science. Though I don’t dislike any area, I do have strengths and weaknesses. For example, I’m not very good at math because I can’t observe it directly. However, biology is fun for me—I never get bored of making observations and there are always surprises. I think this means I love observing natural phenomena.

9 When did you start thinking you would like to pursue studies and/or a career in science?


30% 30% 27% 3% 0% 10%


40% 26% 19% 6% 5% 4%
  • 12 years old or younger
  • Age 13-15
  • Age 16
  • Age 17
  • Age 18 (pre-university)
  • Age 19 (or university entrance age) and older

10 Do like video games?


55% 24% 7% 14%


30% 37% 9% 24%
  • I liked them as a child and I still do now
  • I liked them as a child, but I don’t play them or have the time to play them now
  • I didn’t play them as a child, but I recently started playing them/liking them
  • I don’t like them and/or I don’t play them

What are video games you like now or that you liked before?

Popular choices were the Dragon Quest Series (especially 3!), Super Mario Series, Final Fantasy Series, and Splatoon. Some respondents mentioned playing Splatoon and Minecraft with their kids!

Other responses: Resident Evil Series, Clash Royale, Fornite, Star Cruiser, Bomberman, Tetris, FreeCell, Monster Hunter Series, SUPER METROID, Street Fighter II, Dota 2, Portal, Power Pros, Pokémon, Metal Gear Solid, King’s field Series, Etrian Odyssey Series, Napoleon, The Legend of Zelda series, Momotaro Dentetsu, Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Nobunaga's Ambition, Dynasty Warriors, Samurai Warriors 2, Fate/Grand Order, Cave Story, Kero Blaster, Cim City, A-Train, The Game of Life, DARK SOULS, Pokémon GO, Puyo Puyo, Animal Crossing, Tekken, Gran Turismo series, Breath of Fire II, Death Stranding, Exciting Baseball, NUTS & MILK, Ultima, The MSX version of Gradius, Yokai Yashiki (Monster Mansion), Romancia, diablo, Harvest Moon, and more!

11 Do you like insects (or bugs in general)?


20% 33% 0% 47%


39% 25% 11% 25%
  • I’ve liked them since I was a child
  • I liked them as a child but not now
  • I didn’t like them as a child, but I’ve come to like them more recently
  • I don’t like them

Most popular response: dragonflies! Other popular choices: ladybugs, rhinoceros beetles, and praying mantises.

Other responses: swallowtail butterflies, Eumeta japonica (species of bagworm moth), cicadas, bell crickets, Drosophila melanogaster (species of fruit fly), diving beetles, stag beetles, pill bugs, jewel beetles, grasshoppers, Sagra femorata (species of beetle), drone beetles, shield bugs, silkworms.

12 Do you have any item that you are particular about? If so, what is it and why?

  • R-CCS research division member, 50s

    I’m from Shizuoka, so when I buy sports shoes, I always choose Puma ones.

  • R-CCS research division member, 20s

    I always get the green Monster Energy drink.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    My keyboard is the PFU HHKB (Happy Hacking Keyboard) with a US key layout and blank keycaps. I started using one on my supervisor’s recommendation, and now I feel awkward using any other keyboard.

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    My laptop is a Panasonic Let’s Note. It’s light, has high stability, connects to projectors no problem, and it’s “Made in Kobe”!

  • R-CCS research division member, 30s

    Other than my PC, all my devices are Apple.

  • R-CCS operations and computer technologies division member, 60+

    I love the smell of coffee beans being ground in a manual coffee mill.

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    My favorite ballpoint pens are the Zebra SARASA ones, sizes 0.4 to 0.6. Even when I dash off quick notes in the middle of experiments, I feel like my handwriting is pretty good using these pens.

  • BDR research team member, 50s

    Speakers; I made one myself just like one for my research, and the gap between theory and reality is interesting!

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    The brushes I use for thin frozen sectioning—they’re flat ones made with natural hair and with an appropriate amount of elasticity, and I buy them with my own money. I go into a rage if I lend one out to someone and they mess up the tip, so I never want to let any of them out of my clutches!

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    I switched out my white lab coat for a pink one to improve my mood.

  • BDR research team member, 30s

    I use the Muji portable glasses wipes to clean my glasses. The dry type works well on fingerprints, fats, and oils. You can also get more than one use out of a single wipe.

  • BDR research team member, 20s

    I love ZEQUENZ notebooks. I have used them since my university days to organize my thoughts by writing everything from my research ideas to everyday things down in them. I’m on my third one now.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    I always get the Tung-ting (Dongding) teabags that are sold at the Ikari supermarket. I like Chinese teas, but it’s rare to see them sold in easy-to-use teabags.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    The only cars I’m interested in are strange ones.

  • BDR research team member, 40s

    I always record the same three time blocks on TV: J League Time on BS-NHK, Zokkon Cerezo on J:COM, and the 9 pm Thursday night “Kyo Spo” program on Kyoto TV.