1. Home
  2. IAC News Extra.2, July 30,2013

IAC News

IAC News Extra.2, July 30,2013

Japan Society of Civil Engineers International Activities Center July 30, 2013 IAC News Extra.2

IAC News Special issue


Introducing achievements of women in civil engineering

1. About the issue

This special issue of IAC News focuses on the activities of female members of Japan Society of Civil Engineering (JSCE).

Successful careers of women in civil engineering attract a lot of attention from the media today, and JSCE Social Communication Committee also introduced a comic book featuring a woman civil engineer (working as crane operators in it). In order to send information about these new trends to the world, The IAC Information Networking group focuses on female engineers on this issue

Ms. Mimura, an employee at Metropolitan Expressway Company Limited, answered our questions this time. The interview was conducted to focus on her personal profiles rather than introductions about projects or technical stories. It’s a little different from our usual reports, but we’d be happy if you read it.

2.Report of JSCE Social Communication Committee

 The first meeting of ’the Civil engineering a la mode’

—’Dobojo!’ (informal abbreviation of ’civil engineer girl’) became a heroin of girls’ comic.

This meeting was held as a part of the communication activities including sharing a wide range of latest topics in civil engineering and inviting guest speakers. In the talk live, we interviewed a comic book editor who is responsible for the comic books in which ’Dobojo’ is a heroin. Some women playing active parts in civil engineering field were introduced in the meeting, which were held in congenial atmosphere, while female participants in the meeting shared their experiences at work.

We will continue the reports like that time so that you can feel closer to civil engineering.

The first meeting place of ’the Civil engineering a la mode

’Dobojo!’’in three volumes, the comic books featuring a civil engineer girl


★Click here for more details on ’the Civil engineering a la mode’

http://committees.jsce.or.jp/publicity/node/36 (Japanese only)


3. Interview with Ms Mimura

Profile of Ms. Keiko Mimura

Ms. Mimura joined Metropolitan Expressway Co., Ltd. (MEX) in 1989 and engaged mainly in research and planning of new routes including ones for traffic safety measures.  After taking charge of a tank lorry induced fire accident on Route 5 Ikebukuro Line and serving customer’s inquiries at toll system transition from flat to measured, she has been Technical Manager (Intellectual Property Right), Technical Promotion Section, Technical Division of MEX since September 2012.


Q1. Why did you choose civil engineering?

I chose my major in civil engineering following the sponsor―my father’s intention. He was a registered surveyor. When I took high school science course in my third year, he told me, ’If you study civil engineering in university, I’ll pay your school expenses. Otherwise, I’ll just loan you so you’ll have to pay it by yourself’. At that time, I took the science course by elimination because I was not good at English, and had no enthusiasm for any other studies especially if I would have to pay tuition by myself.

Q2.What was the happiest thing in your career?

It was when one person once told me, ’You are a person who sincerely considers good for local community.’ and asked me shaking hand. After graduation, I looked for a job dealing with roads because I thought roads ensure peoples’ lives in modern. Though it was before the revision of law on equal job opportunities for men and women, 1989, I got a job at Metropolitan Expressway Public Corporation (at the time) somehow, and could get involved in construction and maintain metropolitan expressway. The projects I’ve worked on changed every few years, and I used to be involved in constructing general roads leading to a metropolitan expressway in a city area in one of the projects. I proposed a plan to plant trees which I had grown from the seeds for the local biotope to line the roads, and it pleased the local residents very much. I was very glad because my efforts didn’t end up only satisfying myself or our company, but could contribute to the real users.

Q3. Have you had any hardships?

No. I haven’t. I overcame some challenges in the past, but nothing reminded me as ’hardships’ afterward. I may have been experienced some challenging works, but when I think back them on, they are all good experiences to which I learned. I might be a type of person who wants to make use of experiences for the next time.

Q4. What are your goals for the future?

My future goal is to become an old woman whom everyone recognizes as female at first sight. I am turning fifty years old, and sometimes think about my past, present and future life. I’ve been generally happy enough at this point. If I ask myself whether my life is good or bad, I could say it’s good. Then, how should I spend the rest of my life while keeping it as good one?  I want to be like the elder women I admire, and I looked for things they have in common. I found out that all of them are womanly no matter how old they are. There are some old women you can’t tell whether a man or a woman for the first time, but none of them is very attractive to me. With behavior, make-up, fashion, belongings, charming women know various ways to be feminine. I’m getting a late-start and trying to follow them.

Q5. What are your favorite words or mottos?

My favorite words are ’Slow but steady wins the race’. That’s what my tea ceremony teacher once told me. I interpreted it as ’No matter how slowly, just do something consistently, so I will improve myself’, or’ Don’t overdo, but don’t give up’.

Q6. Please send a message to following women civil engineers.

’When in Roma, as the Romans do’. Although the number of female civil engineers has been increasing, we are still in the minority. In civil engineering field, the presence of female engineers is asserting ourselves already just by itself. You surely have some technical opinions you can’t compromise as an engineer. Excepting for those, why can’t we follow the rules that men, the majority made?  However, I can’t guarantee people around me also perceive my behavior as I mentioned above.

Thank you very much for taking time from your busy schedule for this issue.


 What's Happening

・Aug. 20-22:ACECC 6th CECAR in Jakarta, Indonesia


・Sept 4-6: 2013 JSCE Annual Meeting at Nihon University Tsudanuma Campus

・Oct. 9-12 : ASCE 143rd Annual Civil Engineering Conference (Charlotte, N.C)


・Oct. 23-25 : 2013 KSCE Annual Conference & Civil Exposition at High 1 Resort, Gangwon-do


・The summary of feature articles in the JSCE Magazine is available on the JSCE website.


・Concrete Committee International Newsletter No. 33


IAC News Subscription

IAC publishes the IAC News as one of tool to communicate with and share information with the members.  In order to network widely, we would like to invite you, your friends and colleagues to become a subscriber to the IAC News. Please register online if you are interested in the IAC News: (http://committees.jsce.or.jp/s_iad/iac_news_e). We are looking forward to meeting you.

Registration form for IAC News subscription:

Japanese :(http://committees.jsce.or.jp/kokusai/node/31

English :http://www.jsce-int.org/pub/registration/non-international_students

English for those who have studied/ graduated from Japanese colleges and universities : 



【Comments and Questions】

Please send us your feedback and comments to help us improve the IAC news. We look forward to hearing from you.

JSCE IAC: iac-news@jsce.or.jp