Tohoku-Melbourne Day Down Under

The third Tohoku-Melbourne Day was held at the University of Melbourne on November 8 and 9, with President Hideo Ohno and Executive Vice President Toshiya Ueki leading the 23-member group from Tohoku University.

This year's event included a senior leadership meeting - the first between President Ohno and University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor Duncan Maskell since both men took office - as well as two days of joint workshops for researchers in the fields of materials science, physical chemistry and higher education.

At the leadership meeting, held on November 8, President Ohno outlined Tohoku University's new vision, specifically mentioning industry-university collaboration.

Tohoku University and the University of Melbourne entered into a strategic partnership in 2016, and since then, there has been a marked increase in exchanges of students and researchers. Executives from both sides shared information about recent achievements, and discussed areas that both universities would like to see encouraged, such as the promotion of the universities' missions within their local communities, the further exchange of students, and efforts to support entrepreneurship.

Joint workshops held over two days were split into two strands - one for materials science and physical chemistry, and the other for higher education. Presentations in the former group focused on materials science on the first day, with seven speakers - including Professor Atsushi Muramatsu, director of the Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials (IMRAM) - invited to give an overview of their research.

Attention turned to the field of physical chemistry on the second day, and six representatives from Tohoku University, including Professor Fuminori Misaizu of the Graduate School of Science, presented their work. The lecture series was followed by a poster session for students to introduce their recent research efforts.

At the Higher Education workshop, Professor Kazuko Suematsu, who is special advisor to the president and the deputy director of the Global Learning Center, met with her counterparts from the Melbourne Center for the Study of Higher Education (MCSHE) to discuss the development of Tohoku University's "Intercultural Co-learning Class."

From next academic year, the two universities will promote new cooperative activities, such as the holding of seminars for educational practitioners and the production of joint research papers. There are also plans for about 16 undergraduate students from Tohoku University to take part in a two-week faculty-led program down under, titled "Multiculturalism: How diversity shapes a society" next February.


Tohoku University International Exchange Division
Tel: +81 22 217-4844

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