Graduate School Today

Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences Today

 Ever since its establishment in April, 2003, the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences, as its establishment principle, has maintained education research while accomplishing projects in cooperation with institutes and research centers as a “project-based graduate school”, working as an “individual graduate school” not found on specific undergraduate course, to develop researchers who will engage in leading issues and theme of the new era.

 Based on these features of a “project-based graduate school”, “project based program for developing researchers of human and social science” (2005) was chosen as Improvement of Graduate Education Initiatives in 2005 and in 2007, and was chosen as Global COE Program Ars Vivendi (until 2011), both by Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. We are developing education research activities with graduate students and faculty as a whole while working on research projects for Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research.

 Furthermore, reports are made at international conferences or symposiums, academic meetings, graduate student projects, all sorts of seminars (including public seminars planned and run by graduate students), inside and outside the country. We are dispatching our accomplishments proactively through the publication of thesis on Core Ethics (edited and published by Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences) and other scientific journals, or publishing Ars Vivendi), edited by Research Center for Ars Vivendi (published once a year from Seikatsu Shoin) and Reported Issue by Research center for Ars Vivendi (13 issues in past three years). With such positive participation of faculty and graduate students to “theme-centered project research”, the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences, working on fostering and educating leading researchers, has marked a huge success in seven short years since its establishment.

Items (1) and (2) are pursued under these education guidance systems.

(1) The initiative and results in producing 39 top-class doctoral graduates

  Our mission in education and learning is to foster graduate students into “top-class researchers” through positive research participation in projects, and staying true to this principle, we have produced numerous top-class doctoral graduates in a short period of time. As a matter of fact, we produced 39 doctoral graduates (scholar/science) (including those pending graduation) in five years between 2005-2009. The number is increasing every year — one in 2005, four in 2006, nine in 2007, 13 in 2008 (including 2 thesis doctors), 12 in 2009 (including those pending graduation). We developed a “career paths forming support program” in which the doctoral graduates like the above plan and create research programs as PD, RA or writing staff. Because of this substantial and effective career paths forming support, more than 60% of 39 doctor’s degree acquirers are now working as university faculty members, PD research fellows at the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, or PDs at the Kinugasa Research Center.

(2) Making effort to cooperate research results linked with a title=”project” href=”″>project, with international research institutions

Taking a look at the latest three years (2007-2009), the number of submission of research results linked with projects was overwhelming. The total number of thesis and books written was 1170 (900 of it was accomplished by GCOE) and reports made at academic conferences were 790 (702 of it was accomplished by GCOE). 34 students acquired doctor’s degree (including those pending graduation), and 22 students made to become research fellows of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (including PD). We are also making a remarkable effort in main publications and international research institutes.

Based on these series of accomplishments, the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences promotes the following (3)-(5).

 Supported by these international expansion and result submissions, the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences cooperated with international education research institutions – we have already made an organizational cooperation agreement with the Anthropology and Epistemology of Complexity Course of Bergamo University (CERCO, Italy), held several international exchange projects with University of Edinburgh (UK), and worked with Disability Studies Center of University of Leeds which develops international research led by Prof. Colin Barnes, a world-famous authority on disability studies. We have maintained close research base point cooperation with Kyonggi University (Korea), Daegu University (Korea), DPI Korea (Disabled People’s International), and Association for Research on Disability Studies Korea, and worked with McGill University (Canada) which held an international symposium in 2007 and 2008, and University of Calgary (Canada) and so on. While cooperating education research internationally with Disability Studies Center of University of Leeds, we submit the knowledge and technique earned to Kyonggi University or Daegu University in Korea, and internationally make known the circumstances of disability studies of Korea. In this way, we aim for “cooperation of base= hub functionalization. Domestically, we have also collaborated in planning and cooperated with education research institutions developing leading researches in Japan, such as Center for the Study of Communication-Design of Osaka University and GCOE of University of Tokyo.
Our goal is to construct a network of education research base of East Asia through cooperation of base= hub functionalization of international education research institutions like above, and to be in center of global education research institutions, and to foster researchers who will truly be valued internationally.

Implementation of a program that develops more active research with those concerned and their supporters

 Together with the over 10 students with disabilities in the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences, in addition to the plan of educational, there has been a concrete initiatives and planning of the Support Center for Students with Disabilities. Pioneering research has been carried out on the societal structures to that end. In other words, students with disabilities and ones supporting them are attempting to maintain necessary methods of support, while summarizing their research, and publishing their results internationally. This research is gaining both national and international attention. In reality, these results have lead to tie ups with various domestic and international projects and the Research Center for Ars Vivendi, Report 6 (there were initially 1000 copies of Center Report 6 published, but due to the overwhelming response, another 1000 copies were published, and in March 2010, a enlarged and revised edition was published as the Research Center for Ars Vivendi, Report 12). Furthermore, due to the overwhelming international attention, this report is planned to be translated into Korean.

 The development of the research by those concerned and their supporters, includes many projects: there is research into support technologies and support system where information has been digitalized to help students with visual disabilities (Disability Support Research Project); the lifestyle support initiatives and, using IT, information sharing initiatives carried out by people with terminal diseases such as ALS, which is furthered by more research (Terminal Disease Support Research Project); by compiling and posting a vast amount of text data, we can guarantee the accessibility of people with disabilities, and, at the same time, by transmitting information in English, Korean and Chinese on the homepage, this benefits not just Japanese users but those in East Asia (Information Dissemination / Securing Research Project).

At the Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences, through these detailed and effective initiatives, the research programs of these internationally acclaimed researchers and supporters have developed. In reality, while being active with international patient organizations, internationally and domestically highly acclaimed research by several graduate students have been compiled by many students(of those, one received the 41st Grand Prize of the Oya Soichi Award for Non-Fiction).

5. Maintenance and enrichment of research environments and resources for the research programs by those concerned and their supporters and the base partnerships

It is a given that to “make connections with international educational research institutions = by functioning as a hub, and to build networks and educational research institutions in East Asia” and to “develop the research by those concerned and their supporters”, it is necessary to “maintain and enrich research environments and resources”. For example, it is crucial to have personnel who can manage multi-language projects, as English, Chinese and Korean are necessary to create partnerships with research institutions in East Asia (Project Manager for partnerships with international educational research institutions).

 Furthermore, without hiring a team of “researchers to create base partnerships” and create quality international cooperation, the program will not develop. In order to handle the multiple tasks of research projects by those concerned and their supports, it is necessary to personnel who have the ability to manage task such as organization, operation, archiving and website management (Project Manger of research projects by those concerned and their supporters). Also, it is necessary to make an IT environment for study, publishing subsidization system, multi-language transmission of independent publications, and an East Asian scholarship archiving operation.

Through the maintenance and enrichment of research environments and resources, “the development of research programs by those concerned and their supporters” and base partnerships can take place, it will bring the possibility of “partnerships with research institutions of East Asia”. We have developed research under our department research policy of “an educational research system based on a project style graduate school and partnerships with international research institutions.”

Our aim in research policy is to connect such “partnership” with educational research institutes in East Asia, outside the two organizations, and to make a more multiple and organic linking of base point= hub functionalization, and to become the center of connection between Europe, America, and East Asia.

While taking into consideration the development of these East Asian research, our second challenge is to transmit in multi-languages the supporting principle of our fundamental research, “to jointly research with the cooperation of those concerned and their supporters”. We also aim to accumulate and share in multiple languages our research resources with the world.

Thirdly, we plan to continue and construct from a mid-term perspective the enrichment of a framework for independent research to further the programs of those concerned and their supporters, as well as partnerships with the above.

(Extract from “2010 Application for the Promotion and Development Measures”, some parts edited)

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