Because of the rapid advances in information and communication technology in recent years, 21st century is said to be the year of “shifting toward to knowledge society”, where intangible goods such as knowledge is the important resource, from industrial society where they values tangible goods as important resource. In this knowledge society, it is important that the creation of new knowledge such as by utilizing of knowledge in existence. For that purpose, it is said to require the enriching and maintenance of environment to collect, archive and use intellectual information resource effectively and efficiently, such as books, magazines, dictionaries, data base, intellectual information resource of the internet.
As for the environmental condition of Japan in relating to collection, archiving and use of intellectual information resource, we believe that the current status of Japan is not called to be advanced environment. Meanwhile, in advanced countries of U.S.A and Europe, and also even in China and Korea, these activities are said to be aggressive and initiatives of some of projects are taken by these governments. For example, regarding publications such as books, magazines, news papers, and digital information on the internet, we face with many cases that the archiving and arrangement of such information is not structured and build systematically. It is, therefore, difficult to search and obtain easily necessary information. Also, we often see the cases that we can not use efficiently the intellectual resource because of difficult process of copyright with respect to the intellectual information resource.
In order to overcome this kind of situation, not only consolidation of legal system and financial support with regards to the intellectual resource, but it is also necessary to have comprehensive actions and measures with supports based on tight cooperation by people associated. As a prerequisite for this, it is imperative and useful in making the progress, we believe, that, from a comprehensive standpoint, people involved in the collection, archive and use of intellectual information resource, and/or personal, associations, agencies who are interested in these, should exchange opinions and discuss about the environmental arrangement with regards to intellectual information resource not on the short term profit and loss basis.
For that purpose, we periodically hold conferences and establish workshops with people regardless of agencies, associations or industries and study about the collection, archive and use of intellectual information resource. We believe that such the association as to provide educational campaign and disclosure of proposals on the Web homepage, and also by publish and distribution of pamphlet is necessary, and that incorporated nonprofit organization is most appropriate for it. We therefore formed this time IRI (Intellectual Resource Initiative).