On 30 June, Japan's education ministry MEXT announced the granting of Designated National University (DNU) status to Kyoto University and two other institutions.
The newly-launched DNU program aims to support Japan's national universities with strategies for attracting capable individuals, enhancing research capacity, and earning broad societal recognition and support, establishing a virtuous cycle of growth. In order to qualify, universities must demonstrate an ability to execute their plans within a set timeframe.
Designated institutions are expected to present a concrete roadmap for realizing a vision, based on analysis of existing human and material resources, and on anticipated changes in the economic and social environment. In addition, as leaders of Japan's national university reform, DNUs are responsible for actively sharing the outcomes of their efforts, including estimated impacts on socio-economic development.
Comments from President Juichi Yamagiwa
I am extremely honored and humbled to see our University and its new vision recognized by the government as worthy of this special designation and support. As President, I am committed to striving to ensure that Kyoto University will live up to its vision by continuously enhancing its educational and research capabilities.
Since its inception, our University has been guided by its Mission Statement to serve the nation and the international community by tackling global issues and proposing solutions. Based on both this Statement and the WINDOW Concept, which has guided our actions since 2014, we spent about a year formulating the plans envisioned under the DNU program, settling eventually on the details outlined in the diagram below.
As a world-leading university, we aim to execute these plans in collaboration and coordination with the international community, so that we can continuously contribute to global harmony.
Our goals as a DNU can be summarized as follows:
- Flexible and dynamic organization for creating knowledge
Enhance our world-leading research to forge new frontiers by facilitating open and flexible interaction across departments
- Cycle of capable and diverse minds
Establish a "human cycle" spanning multiple sectors by attracting diverse students and faculty from across the world, and training and sending them out into society
- New ways to contribute to society
Integrate and internationalize well-established disciplines to create new value and societal impact, and rethink our multi-sector collaboration efforts by founding a holding company to give more back to the community
- World-class administration
Establish an administrative structure that facilitates constant coordination of top-management policies and employee proposals, ensure strong and thorough central governance and timely policy implementation, even while protecting the autonomy of diverse internal organizations, and strengthen our financial foundation by enhancing sources of revenue
We are confident that the DNU program will help us achieve these goals and increase our capability to serve humanity. We will, however, call on the government to carry out further regulatory and legal reforms so that we can build the foundation and organization necessary to operate at the same level as the world's other leading universities.
Kyoto University appreciates your understanding and support as we take on new challenges as a designated university.