On behalf of the conference committee, I welcome all of you participating in the 12th Biennial International Conference on EcoBalance (EcoBalance 2016). As an international conference having the main theme of life cycle assessment, the first International Conference on EcoBalance was held in 1994. The last conference, which was the 11th, marked our 20th anniversary. After that turning point, the UN Sustainable Development Summit 2015 established sustainable development goals (SDGs). COP21 adopted the Paris Agreement as the first international treaty since the Kyoto Protocol. Under development of such various international movements as a new step forward for social sustainability, naturally, there is no time for EcoBalance to look back on its successful past. We must make the turning point a new starting point for our advancement. EcoBalance 2016 welcomes you to Kyoto, an international city steeped in the rich history of Japan, and presents all of you with opportunities to interact with one another and share advanced discussions leading along a path to a sustainable society based on the life cycle concept.
We decided that the overall theme of the conference shall be "Responsible Value Chains for Sustainability." Last year, the Japanese Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), the world's largest institutional investor, signed the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). This completed the preparations for investments in environment (E), society (S), and governance (G) in Japan. We have entered an age in which disclosure of ESG information by Japanese companies can strongly affect their corporate value. EcoBalance 2016 aims to discuss challenges to incorporating sustainable value chains that create corporate value in a business, cooperating with various stakeholders, and finding solutions using scientific knowledge.
I sincerely thank all of you for participating in the conference and thank our sponsors, Reviewers, and International Advisory Board members for providing support and cooperation in holding the conference. I earnestly hope that this conference, all of the time you spend here, and the people you meet in Kyoto will provide you with a fruitful and rewarding experience.
We look forward to seeing you in Kyoto.