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International Forum: "The Formation of a Multipolar World-view and Foreign Language Education – The Challenge of Cultural and Linguistic Diversity”

June 20, 2008

An international forum entitled "The Formation of a Multipolar World-view and Foreign Language Education – The Challenge of Cultural and Linguistic Diversity" was held at the Kyoto University Clock Tower Centennial Hall on June 20, 2008. The forum was sponsored by the Institute for the Promotion of Excellence in Higher Education. The forum was designed to send a message of inspiration to undergraduate students and promote the internationalization of Kyoto University's education and research. The event drew over 500 participants from both within and outside the university, including students, faculty and staff members as well as citizens from diverse sections of society.

The first section of the forum, entitled "The Challenge of Multilingualism and Cultural Diversity," featured a keynote speech by the former Prime Minister of France, Mr. Dominique de Villepin. The second section featured presentations entitled "The World in Turmoil – From American Unipolarism to a Multipolar World" and "Multilinguisticism as National Policy," presented by Professor Keishi Saeki of Kyoto University's Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies and Professor Nobutaka Miura of Chuo University respectively. The presentations were followed by a symposium hosted by Associate Professor Kizou Ogura of the Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies. The symposium, which featured contributions from all three presenters, reaffirmed the value of studying foreign languages other than English and provided insight into the importance of forming a multipolar world-view.


Mr. Dominique de Villepin, former Prime Minister of France

Professor Keishi Saeki of the Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University

Dr. Kazuo Oike, President of Kyoto University, gives a welcome address

Professor Nobutaka Miura of Chuo University

A scene from the symposium