Media Relations Section

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If you have developed scientific technology that you’d like to promote, won an award, received a significant grant, or been elected as fellow to an academic society, or if you will organize a public outreach activity that you’d like to promote in local/international media, please contact


The Media Section manages press relations and science writing, and helps to coordinate video and photos as well as OIST's social media assets such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube. The section also produces OIST print publications and established the OIST podcast channel in 2019.

Media Relations Manager

Tomomi Okubo

Having worked in communications and public relations in diverse sectors and countries, Tomomi Okubo has an extensive professional network. She plans and implements strategic media communications at OIST. Tomomi is the principal contact point between OIST members and the media, both domestic and international. During her time with OIST, the institution has received prominent domestic and international coverage. Tomomi also contributes by writing newspaper columns and web stories, posting social media, organizing events, and doing whatever else will bring OIST greater name recognition. Tomomi possesses an MBA and was educated in Japan and France. She is a PRSJ Certified PR Planner.

Contact: , 098-982-3447

Tomomi Okubo outside smiling

Media Relations Specialist

Hisashi Gakiya

Originally from Naha City, Okinawa, Hisashi Gakiya has been involved in a wide range of communication-related activities, including event operations, community relations programs, and media relations. In the OIST Media Section, he is involved in a variety of initiatives designed to communicate OIST's activities and cutting edge research to the world. After graduating from Okinawa Shogaku High School, he attended University of Hawaii at Manoa, where he studied public relations and digital media.

Contact: , 098-982-3784

Hisashi Gakiya smiling

Web and Multimedia Assistant

Kaori Serakaki

Kaori Serakaki is the Web and Multimedia Assistant for the Media Section. She was born and raised in Onna Village, the home of OIST. After graduating from the University of the Ryukyus, she worked as a TV director in Tokyo. After being diagnosed in adulthood with Asperger’s Syndrome, she switched to web design and intellectual property management. She is also interested in using design and video for science.


See her work examples: 

Please inquire if you would like to see more samples, such as science illustration or logos.

Science Writers

The profiles of former OIST Science Communication Fellows.

Merle Naidoo

After completing an undergraduate degree in Plant Sciences and a MSc in Geography, Merle Naidoo worked as a lecturer in South Africa, teaching courses in environmental studies and urban development. She then completed her PhD in Sustainability Science at the University of Tokyo, exploring the adoption, visibility and outcomes of corporate environmental sustainability (CES) practices of retailers in Japan and South Africa. Merle is enthusiastic about research and innovation in green supply chains, livelihoods development, and sustainable lifestyle choices. She enjoys being outdoors exploring new places and listening to 80s and 90s music. Merle looks forward to using her diverse educational and research experience to highlight the work done at OIST.  


Merle Naidoo

Adrian Skov

With an MA in Rhetoric from the University of Copenhagen, Adrian Skov takes an academic and passionate approach to building connections between experts and the public. Having worked professionally in public affairs and public relations in specialist fields for several years, he’s built a deep passion for and familiarity with the inner workings of science, which he now uses to bring closer attention the research at OIST. In his spare time, he’s exploring – through cooking, out hiking, in museums, or by reading.


Adrian Skov