University Summit in Kyushu 2007
Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan, 27-28 October
Keynote Address

Prof. Dr. Katsuhiko SHIRAI
President, Waseda University

 

About University and Community Cooperation

 
   

As we are entering into an era of an aging society with a falling birthrate, the environment facing higher education is becoming even more challenging.@It has been predicted that there will be an increase in the number of universities which will have difficulties in the management of their schools due to the lack of students resulting from the falling birthrate.

Meanwhile, many local governments are suffering from declining communities as a result of a lack of youth, as well as declining local industries due to a decrease in the labor population.@Therefore, the local governments are expected to create concrete strategies to make their communities attractive to young people while also being elderly-friendly.

Having collaboration with local governments and communities is not only a social responsibility for a university, but also it will provide a catalyst for university revolution in nurturing individuals who can make productive contributions to society.

Moreover, it is also beneficial for communities to collaborate with a university in order to invigorate local industries by utilizing university's intellectual resources.@In addition, the collaboration will provide an opportunity for lifelong study to the community which will add value to it.

Waseda University has been known as a "university without a gate", and has been promoting its openness to society both internally and externally.

We have been strengthening and creating community-related initiatives, such as Open Education Center, Extension Center, Project Research Center, Technology Licensing Organization (TLO), and Professional Graduate Schools.@Waseda has nine comprehensive partnership agreements with both domestic and international local governments, and is promoting the utilization of intellectual resources of the university in various communities.

I would like to discuss comprehensive strategies and the significance of University-Community cooperation by introducing Waseda University's initiatives and examples.