Economy, Finance and Physics

Hideaki Aoyama November 2019

I am a physicist.

To be precise, I am a theoretical physicist, specializing on high-energy physics. Nobody has decided who I am. But I feel that way. In fact, through my days at Caltech, Stanford, · · ·, Kyoto University, I have been engaged in research on particle/string theories, field theories and a bit of condensed matter physics. As I turned 65, I was forced to retire from Kyoto University at the end of March 2019 (Age Discrimination!). But I am still engaged in research at full speed. This is the way of my life: Full of excitement and joy in finding and revealing new things, which nobody else could see before me.

I am now the Representative Chairman of this company iBEST. This is because I have been engaged in research on Economy and Finance recently. In this company, I am lucky to have my collaborators Yoshi Fujiwara and Hiro Inoue as Directors. I am also glad that we have excellent people, Mr. Takei as the President and Prof. Iwashita as a Senior Advisor. One of the strongest member I can think of.

The name “iBEST” is the official name of this company by itself, inspired by an another name in our mind, “institute of Big data in Economy, Science, and Technology”. As this name suggests, we wish to bring our new analytical tools and findings to the business world and also help/assist various researchers with the same mind.

The is also an academic society “B.E.S.T. Society”, of which I am a president. Most of the key members of this society are from Japan, Korea and United States. We have conferences and workshops for the purpose of free academic exchanges and discussions at various locations of the world.

Back to my story: Penny Hofstadter claimed that “You guys are physicists. OKAY? You’re always gonna be physicists.” Yes, I am and will be always a physicist.

At the particle group of Caltech, we had Richard Feynman and Murray Gell-Mann, both of whom received Nobel Prize for Physics in 1969. They were not only great physicist but also worked outside Physics: Feynman worked for revealing the cause of the Space Shuttle Challenger incident, worked on deciphering ancient languages, and on a super-parallel computer, ”Connection Machine”. Gell-Mann had good knowledge on Linguistics and also worked on deciphering ancient languages. There was also George Zweig, who played a key role in the discovery of quark, and was doing research in Neurobiology. BTW, I was once defeated during a discussion on a fine pint in Japanese grammar by Gell-Mann. A good memory.

So, I was enlightened by them. Physicist are always physicists. As such, engagement in new academic area armed with all the mathematical skills with the aim of finding new hidden truths is most enjoyable. I hope readers by now can imagine why I am here. The starting points? Well, one day, years ago, I came across a set of economic data and found something remarkable. That is the starting point. I will

elaborate on it on my next blog.