Japan-UK Universities Conference for Collaboration in Research and Education

On Thursday 1 May 2014, to mark the visit of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the UK, we held the Japan-UK Universities Conference for Collaboration in Research and Education at University College London. The event, co-hosted by the Embassy of Japan and UCL, was attended by a total of 30 universities from Japan and the UK. Attended by Prime Minister Abe and senior representatives from 14 Japanese universities and 16 UK universities, this conference was an unprecedented landmark event, with discussions on a wide range of issues surrounding research and education.

In order to sustain its growth and enjoy prosperity in an increasingly globalised world, it is vital that Japan is able to continuously produce outstanding talent and innovation at a global level. Universities are the foundation for nurturing such talent and creating innovation, and therefore the government have outlined increasing the number of Japanese universities in the world’s top university rankings, promoting the exchange of international students at universities, and strengthening innovation, as pillars of our growth strategy and in recommendations from the Council for the Implementation of Education Rebuilding. The United Kingdom has a number of universities named in these world rankings, and has an excellent reputation as an international hub for basic research and personnel exchange, and therefore it is significant that the UK continues to encourage cooperation with Japanese universities.

It is for this reason that the conference was divided into two main sessions of education and research, and along with various presentations and panel discussions, we also held a roundtable discussion attended by Prime Minister Abe. During this roundtable discussion there were extremely fruitful talks regarding a number of issues, including measures to promote exchange of students and young researchers between Japanese and UK universities, consideration of a framework for multilateral rather than bilateral collaboration, and cooperation between Japanese and UK universities in facing global challenges such as ageing. As a result of these discussions, we have been able to produce a joint announcement on behalf of all participating parties.
It is now vitally important to take further steps in our efforts towards realising the objectives outlined in the joint announcement and at this conference. As the Embassy of Japan, we look forward to continuing our efforts in follow-up to this conference, in cooperation with other relevant organisations.



Outline of the Japan-UK Universities Conference for Collaboration in Research and Education

1. Date: Thursday 1 May 2014, 10.00 - 17.15

2. Venue: University College London (UCL)

3. Host: Embassy of Japan in the UK, University College London, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, JSPS (the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) London Office and the British Council.

4. Participating universities: Japan - Doshisha, Hitotsubashi, Hokkaido, Keio, Kyoto, Kyushu, Nagoya, Osaka, Ritsumeikan, Tohoku, Tokyo, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tsukuba, Waseda. UK - Bristol, Cambridge, Durham, Edinburgh, Imperial College, King’s College, Leeds, Liverpool, LSE, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford, Sheffield, UCL, York, Warwick.

For more information on government and university participants, please see Main participants list.

5. Main topics discussed:
(1) Japan-UK Cooperation in Education
i) Promoting international student exchange between Japanese and UK universities
ii) Developing a curriculum through international collaboration
(2) Japan-UK Cooperation in Research
i) Promoting research cooperation between Japanese and UK universities
ii) Promoting collaboration between government, industry and academia in the two countries
iii) Promoting exchange of young researchers and students


The Embassy of Japan
Photographs courtesy of UCL