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Kobe University, Kyoto University, and Osaka University Joint Symposium held

2019-9-6(Fri)

On Wednesday, September 4, the Kyoto University, Osaka University, and Kobe University Joint Symposium (sponsored by Nikkei Shimbun Inc. and the Japan Center for Economic Research) was held in Kita-ku, Osaka, to which some 550 individuals from the fields of industry and academia were in attendance, as part of the annual "Kansai Economist Meetings." Under the theme of “Kansai-led Creation of the Future – Toward Expo 2025,” presidents from the 3 universities and representatives from the industrial realm had an active discussion on the meaning of creating value on the initiative of the Kansai region, with the upcoming World Expo Osaka in 2025 as the driving force.

At the start of the symposium, Nikkei Shimbun Managing Executive Officer FUJII Tatsuro spoke about the significance of the symposium and his hopes for the revitalization of the Kansai area through industry-academia collaboration. Following this, KANSAI Association of Corporate Executives Representative FUKANO Hiroyuki spoke about unique endeavors that the Kansai region can carry out under the World Expo 2025’s theme of “Designing Future Society for Our Lives,” as well as the kinds of endeavors he wants universities to undertake in order to realize the Expo's vision.

Later, Kyoto University President YAMAGIWA Juichi, Kobe University President TAKEDA Hiroshi, and Osaka University President NISHIO Shojiro spoke about endeavors at their respective universities that can contribute to value creation in the Kansai region. Subsequently, President TAKEDA Masatoshi of crossEffect, Inc. gave an introduction to his company as well as his expectations for Expo 2025 in medical innovation.

During the panel discussion, participants discussed how to make Expo 2025 more attractive to potential visitors. President Nishio said, “In order to entice people to come top the Expo, there needs to be something unique and entertaining for attendees, something truly mind-blowing. To make the expo fun and beneficial for visitors, in addition to simply exhibit things, it needs to create the right atmosphere and use a little ingenuity in delivering unique experiences to attendees. I hope that Expo 2025 will serve as a good opportunity to show the diversity in the Kansai region and its long-held spirit of innovation, a spirit to create new value by destroying conventional value.

President Yamagiwa delivered a proposal on the fusion of traditional Japanese ideas and technology, while President Takeda made a proposal on creating an environment in which people from any country can communicate with each other across language barriers.

They also discussed the concept and principles of industry-university collaboration. President Nishio talked about the significance of “Co-creation” industry-university collaboration that OU has promoted. He said, “In addition to conventional industry-university collaboration, it’s important to build a 'circular system' of R&D. That is, a system in which industry and universities perform creative activity together from the stages of problem seeking and fundamental research, share the results with society, and go back to the fundamental research stage when tackling new challenges uncovered during the R&D process.”

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