On 3 March, Kyoto University held an award ceremony for the winners of the 13th Tachibana Award for Outstanding Women Researchers. The annual award honors the University's early-career women scholars who have made exceptional achievements.
Due to Covid-19 concerns, the 2021 ceremony was held without an on-site audience, but was live-streamed instead to a large number of viewers tuning in from both on and off campus.
The proceedings began with remarks from Dr Kyoko Inagaki, executive vice-president for gender equality, international affairs, and public relations, who as the award committee chair reflected on the 2019-2020 selection process. President Nagahiro Minato then presented a certificate and plaque to each of the two winners, one in the student category and the other in the researcher category. The student winner was Hinako Murayama, in her second year in the doctoral program at the Graduate School of Science, and the researcher winner was Dr Keiko Imamura, program-specific research-center lecturer at the Center for iPS Research and Application (CiRA). Each also received a Wacoal Prize from Mr Tomoyasu Ito, Wacoal Corporation's representative director, president, and corporate officer.
Next, this year's sole honorable mention recipient, Assistant Professor Suyako Tazuru of the Research Institute for Sustainable Humanosphere (RISH), accepted a certificate and an additional prize, also from Presidents Minato and Ito, respectively.
President Minato then delivered a congratulatory address, wishing all the awardees continued success in their research, followed by President Ito's congratulations.
Afterward, Ms Murayama and Dr Imamura presented their winning research, the former discussing "novel quantum phases accompanied by rotational symmetry breaking in strongly correlated electrons", and the latter, "elucidation of the pathology of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and development of the novel therapeutic agents", as the ceremony presenters and others at the venue listened attentively.
The lively event concluded with an address from Dr Takao Hirajima, KyotoU's executive vice-president for education, information infrastructure, and library services.