Symposia, Seminars, and Workshops
- March 22
- The Department of Architecture (School of Engineering, UTokyo) invited guest speakers from ETH Zürich to a talk session on architecture and digital technology. The purpose of the talk session was to review the pavilion project that Associate Prof. Yusuke Obuchi's research group has been working on for the last 5 years by drawing comparisons with similar examples from other universities, including ETH Zürich.
- February 14
- Prof. Didier Sornette of the Chair of Entrepreneurial Risks (Department of Management, Technology and Economics, ETH Zürich) visited the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology (UTokyo) for a timely workshop titled “Virtual Currencies and Privacy towards Frontier ICT Education.” The workshop was supported by the Strategic Partnership Project and held in connection with the Graduate Program for Social ICT Global Creative Leaders, which is managed by the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology under the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Program for Leading Graduate Schools.
- January 16
- The “2nd ETH Zürich-The University of Tokyo Strategic Partnership Symposium on Science, Design, Manufacturing, and Innovation” was held at the Hönggerberg campus of ETH Zürich, with a total of 61 participants: 30 from ETH Zürich (10 professors, 17 researchers and students, and 3 staff members), 30 from UTokyo (9 faculty members, 5 researchers, 15 students, and 1 university research administrator (URA)), and 1 researcher from the Swiss pharmaceutical industry F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd. The opportunity for researchers at both institutions to interact with those working in different fields led to many new connections being made and old ones being strengthened.
- The symposium began with opening remarks by Prof. Jeffrey Bode (Department of Chemistry, ETH Zürich) and Prof. Hiroaki Suga (Department of Chemistry, UTokyo), who both highlighted the benefits of the strategic partnership between the two universities. Then, plenary lectures by Prof. Suga, who presented the ribosomal synthesis of unnatural peptides, and Prof. Didier Sornette (Department of Management, Technology and Economics, ETH Zürich), who discussed economic growth in modern societies, brought together researchers from diverse fields and prompted several interesting questions from the audience.
- The remaining oral presentations were divided into parallel sessions representing the varied research fields of the participants. Notably, presentations in the combined social ICT (information and communications technology)/architecture/digital fabrication session generated lively discussions, despite the different backgrounds of the participants, and the system engineering session included a presentation on the importance of collaborations between industry and academia from Dr. Rainer Schmidt (F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd.). The symposium ended with a poster session, with 33 posters presented mainly by students and young researchers.
- Department of Chemical System Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering
- “The symposium gave me a great opportunity to connect my students in Tokyo with our research partners in Switzerland through open discussions and social events. I also enjoyed meeting with my former/future exchange students at ETH who stayed/will stay in my laboratory. Such an event like this symposium is very important for sustaining the relationship between the two universities.”
- Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science
- “This year I took part in the ETH Zürich-The University of Tokyo Strategic Partnership Symposium for the first time. I was very happy to have the chance to visit ETH Zürich, Switzerland's top university, and present a poster at the symposium.
- The symposium covered not only scientific fields such as chemistry and biology, but also recent research in many other areas, even touching on economics and statistics. It was a great opportunity to be able to expand my knowledge beyond the research covered by the conferences I usually attend. Furthermore, many of the professors from ETH Zürich came to see my poster. We had some lively discussions and they gave me very useful advice on my research. After the poster session we visited the Arch_Tec_Lab, where we got to experience the state-of-the-art in the design field.
- Overall, it was a fascinating day filled with new experiences, and I'd like to thank everyone who gave me this opportunity. I look forward to taking part again when UTokyo hosts the symposium next year and hope that I will be able to assist the visitors to Japan.”
- Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science
- “As soon as I came out of the subway, I was moved by the beautiful historical streets and houses in Zürich. The trams running across the bridge over the Limmat River, the car lights, and the illuminated clock tower and other buildings in the old town were wonderful.
- At the symposium, it was very interesting to listen to lectures from a wide variety of fields. It was a new experience for me to attend such a small symposium (with participants from only two universities) and to interact with researchers from fields that I know absolutely nothing about. For example, at the conference dinner in the evening, I had the chance to talk to some international students studying architecture at UTokyo. This made me realize that international exchange is happening in every research field and how important this exchange is for inspiring and motivating researchers.
- While we were at ETH Zürich, a Japanese researcher based there was kind enough to show us around the chemistry labs. It was interesting to see the similarities and differences between the labs at ETH Zürich and those at UTokyo for myself.
- Thank you for this valuable and interesting opportunity.”
- Third-year doctoral student, Department of Physics, Graduate School of Science, and International Center for Elementary Particle Physics
- “The joint symposium with ETH Zürich was very interesting, with presentations covering many different research fields. Some parts of the talks by researchers in other fields were difficult to understand, but they started with simple explanations, so I enjoyed listening to them. I could see that, no matter what the field, UTokyo researchers are actively working together with researchers at ETH Zürich, and this gave me the motivation to more actively pursue collaborative research myself.
- For me personally, the poster session was particularly worthwhile. It not only gave us students the chance to deepen our understanding of each other's research, but also provided a rare opportunity to talk to students from ETH Zürich about their daily lives and to get to know them better. It was also easy to ask questions about research in other fields at the poster session, and the presenters' thoughtful explanations of their research, starting with the basics, left a strong impression on me.
- The symposium had a different atmosphere to that of a conference or meeting, and I am glad to have been given the chance to take part in this interesting event.”
- Third-year doctoral student, Department of Chemical System Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering
- “In this year's symposium in Zürich I had the great opportunity to attend several presentations regarding some future applications of computational tools in multidisciplinary research. Such an exchange allowed me to open my horizons and validate my research direction. Also, I had the chance to discuss my research with experts in my field and other academics. The symposium enabled me to carry on the connection between my “alma mater” (ETH Zürich) and my current university.”
- First-year doctoral student, Department of Chemical System Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering
- “The symposium gave me a good opportunity to get in touch with students and researchers from other fields from both UTokyo and ETH Zürich. One could join interesting talks in the morning and afternoon sessions, and lively discussions during the poster presentations. The social events were also a great way to exchange knowledge and experience. Therefore, I am looking forward to the next symposium.”
- First-year doctoral student, Department of Chemistry, Graduate School of Science
- “This was the first time I had taken part in a symposium outside of Japan. I was worried at first, but the symposium gave me the chance to talk to students and professors from ETH Zürich and listen to lectures on all kinds of topics outside of my own research field, so in all it was an extremely thought-provoking meeting. I hope that we will continue to hold symposia like this, and that many students from both universities will be able to use them as a place for active discussion and exchange between the universities and among different research areas.”
- Second-year Master's student, Department of Architecture, Graduate School of Engineering
- “Besides the opportunity to present and explain the project we have been working on for almost a year to academics and professionals in several fields, it was a great experience to be able to see and hear from others about what they are doing, be it at UTokyo or ETH Zürich. This was especially so when the work was not in our area of expertise, as this allowed us to expand our knowledge a little. Also, it was a great experience to be able to see the ETH Zürich campus, and this was more special since we, as architecture students, were able to visit the architectural building and see all the technology in robotics they have invested in there. Thanks to this, we were able to later present and talk to the students from the Department of Architecture about our achievements and what they are doing as well. In all, it was a rich and positive experience that allowed us to exchange knowledge and meet experts in several areas.”
- First-year Master's student, Department of Chemical System Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering
- “In the symposium, I had the opportunity to interact with ETH students. Through discussion with them, I was able to obtain a future plan for my research. The symposium gave me more motivation for my research.”
- Fourth-year Bachelor's student, Department of Chemical System Engineering, Faculty of Engineering
- “I had an invaluable experience at the symposium. It was interesting to see the environment in which ETH students study, and discuss with ETH students about my own research. Through participating in this symposium, I gained great motivation to proceed in my research.”
- After the symposium Dr. Russell Loveridge, Managing Director of the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) Digital Fabrication (ETH Zürich), led a guided tour of the Arch_Tec_Lab, which was constructed through interdisciplinary collaboration between researchers at ETH Zürich using new digital fabrication technologies.
- November 15-16
- Prof. Kimito Funatsu's research group in the Department of Chemical System Engineering (School of Engineering, UTokyo) organized the 5th Autumn School on Chemoinformatics, an international symposium held at the Nara Kasugano International Forum. Prof. Gisbert Schneider, a leading expert in the chemoinformatics field from the Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences, ETH Zürich), was invited to give a lecture on drug discovery at the symposium.
- March 28-29
- An international seminar on the collaborative research into muon decay being carried out at the ETH Domain's Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), as well as other related research, was held at UTokyo. The participants, who included six graduate students from UTokyo and three from ETH Zürich, presented a report on the PSI summer program held in August 2016 and held discussions about future plans and developments in education.
- January 19-20
- The “ETH Zürich-The University of Tokyo Strategic Partnership Symposium on Science, Design, Manufacturing, and Information” was held at UTokyo. Researchers from both universities exchanged their opinions on the similarities and differences between their extremely diverse subject areas, which ranged from particle physics to architecture, and discussed the potential for interdisciplinary research.
- After the opening address by UTokyo's Prof. Masashi Haneda, Executive Vice President responsible for International Affairs, Prof. Naoto Sekimura, Deputy Director of the Division of International Affairs, gave a speech on the strategic partnership initiative. Then, faculty members and graduate students from ETH Zürich and UTokyo presented and discussed their research in eight sessions, which included a poster session. The topics straddled particle physics, physical chemistry, organic chemistry, information science and technology, drug design, pharmaceutical processing, and architectural design.
- The symposium was well attended by over 150 participants. Oral presentations were given by six professors, four researchers, and five graduate students from ETH Zürich and a total of 10 professors and graduate students from UTokyo, and there were 25 poster presentations. Researchers from the Swiss company F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd. and two Japanese companies also gave oral presentations.
- During the seven oral sessions, participants from both universities presented their respective research findings, and also exchanged information about the effects of the strategic partnership initiative. This led to fruitful discussions during the Q&A sessions that followed each presentation and the poster session held in the evening of the first day.
- In concluding the symposium, Prof. Kaoru Yamanouchi, head of the executive committee, summarized the discussions and expressed his hope for a continued partnership with ETH Zürich.
- ETH Zürich:
- Before the symposium, on January 17, Prof. Matthias Kohler of the Department of Architecture (ETH Zürich) and Dr. Russel Loveridge of the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) Digital Fabrication visited Associate Prof. Yusuke Obuchi's laboratory in the Department of Architecture (School of Engineering, UTokyo). Afterwards, they held a reception, to which they also invited Dr. Matthias Frey and Ms. Kyoko Suzuki, Head and Deputy Head, respectively, of the Science and Technology Office at the Embassy of Switzerland in Japan, and Prof. Kaoru Yamanouchi of the School of Science (UTokyo).
- Prof. Kohler's group also visited two of Japan's leading general contractors and one heavy industry company before the symposium.
- Science and Technology Office Tokyo, Embassy of Switzerland in Japan:
- November 9-10
- Prof. Jörn Piel of the Department of Biology (ETH Zürich) was invited to UTokyo along with seven postdoctoral researchers and four doctoral students for the “ETHZ-UTokyo Joint Symposium of Frontier Chemistry”, which was organized by Prof. Hiroaki Suga of the Department of Chemistry (School of Science). Prof. Takeaki Ozawa of the Department of Chemistry, and researchers of all levels, from associate professors to doctoral students, took turns in presenting their work in interdisciplinary research fields. The symposium attracted almost 100 participants, including many researchers and students from UTokyo. A postdoctoral researcher from ETH Zürich who now works at the School of Science also took part in the event. The symposium generated lively discussions on a wide variety of fields, ranging from physical chemistry to chemical biology.
- The reception, held on the evening of the 9th, was attended by two representatives from the Embassy of Switzerland, including the head of the Science and Technology Office, and provided participants with further opportunities for international networking.
- Science and Technology Office Tokyo, Embassy of Switzerland in Japan:
- October 16-20
- “Physics of Fundamental Symmetries and Interactions” (PSI2016), an international workshop on particle physics, was held at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) of the ETH Domain. Eight students from UTokyo and six from ETH Zürich participated in the event. In addition to oral and poster presentations, the participants held lively discussions with researchers working in related fields. A report on the summer program held in August was also presented.
- End of March
- An international seminar on the collaborative research into muon decay being carried out at the ETH Domain's Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), as well as other related research, was held at UTokyo, with six participants from UTokyo and three from ETH Zürich. A report on last year's summer program was also presented.
- December 5
- Associate Prof. Yusuke Obuchi of the Department of Architecture (School of Engineering, UTokyo) organized a symposium on the production of a pavilion that was achieved through industry-academia collaborations involving Associate Prof. Jun Sato's group in the Department of Architecture, Prof. Takeo Igarashi's group in the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, and Takenaka Corporation. Prof. Matthias Kohler of the Architecture and Digital Fabrication group (Department of Architecture, ETH Zürich) was invited as the keynote speaker.
- November 12
- Prof. Kaoru Yamanouchi, Vice Dean of the School of Science (UTokyo), and Ms. Mayuko Nakai of the Division of International Affairs attended a workshop on human resources systems for academic staff and researchers held at the Embassy of Switzerland. The workshop was also attended by Dr. Matthias Frey, Head of the Science and Technology Office of the Embassy of Switzerland in Japan; Dr. Thomas Eichenberger, Head of Faculty Affairs at ETH Zürich; Mr. Boris Dongelmans, ETH representative in Japan; and Dr. Rahel Byland of ETH Global. They met and held discussions with representatives from other Japanese universities and organizations who also participated in the workshop.
- February 19
- Prof. Donald Hilvert, Head of the Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences (ETH Zürich), and Prof. Jeffrey Bode, Head of the Laboratory of Organic Chemistry, visited the School of Science (UTokyo) where they gave talks at the kick-off symposium.