This program promotes international research and educational activities by students building on a close network of ties with academic institutions especially in Asia. It has been in operation since April 2010 and has been adopted by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) under the “Institutional Program for Young Researcher Overseas Visits”.
One of the most important trends of the 21st century is the rapid rise of Asia, reflected in expansion of the ICT network and economic growth throughout the continent. In response to this trend, the GSII established the ITASIA program (International Master’s/Doctoral Degree Prgram: Information, Technology and Society in Asia) whose curriculum is taught entirely in English, making it a base for the internationalization strategy of the University of Tokyo. The information studies approach to globalizing Asian society is emphasized.
It has become clear, however, that the provision of education programs in English has had the unfortunate side effect of distancing Japanese students from playing a central role in the internationalization process. In recent years, Japanese students seem increasingly reluctant to participate in international conferences and present their research in English. To counteract this tendency, this program seeks to strengthen existing ties with overseas academic institutions and promote participation by Japanese students in joint activities with overseas students and international partnership projects being pursued by faculty members.
Under the program, Japanese students currently engaged in thesis/dissertation writing will be selected on the basis of proposals they submit and given approximately two-month placements at appropriately chosen overseas universities to receive research supervision or conduct fieldwork.
Two types of projects are supported by the program:
1. International Cooperative Projects
Students can apply for support under the program in order to participate in joint research projects between the III and overseas universities. This requires students to follow the directions of faculty members in charge of each international project.
2. Individual Projects
Students can also apply for support to carry out their own fieldwork or data collection projects overseas. This must follow a specific procedure involving submission of a proposal, selection, travel overseas, submission of a report afterwards, and feedback from the supervising faculty member.
Students successfully completing either type of project under the program will by awarded credit for the course unit “Asian Globalization Studies”.