Hokkaido University Officials Visit UP

Officials from Hokkaido University pose with UP President Danilo L. Concepcion (7th from right) and officials of the University of the Philippines. Photo by Bong Arboleda, UP MPRO.

Officials and faculty of the Hokkaido University of Japan visited the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman campus on March 15, 2017. Activities included concurrent seminars by professors from Hokkaido University, a tour around the campus, a lunch meeting with UP President Danilo L. Concepcion, and an Appointment Ceremony for Hokkaido University Ambassadors and Partner at the UP Executive House.

By way of orientation for the visiting professors, Dean Jose Maria Balmaceda of UP Diliman, College of Science (CS) gave an overview of the UP System, the UP Diliman campus, and the degree granting units of CS. Dean Koichiro Ishimori of the Faculty of Science of Hokkaido University in turn presented an overview of his university. Seminars conducted by the Japanese professors were then held simultaneously at the National Institute of Geological Sciences, Institute of Chemistry, National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology and Institute of Biology, National Institute of Physics, and Institute of Mathematics. The topics and lecturers were: Algebraic Geometry and Hypergeometric Functions by Prof. Masanori Asakura; New Magnetoelectric Effect in Toroidal Ordered State of UNi4B by Prof. Hiroshi Amitsuka; Tetramerization of Tumor Suppressor Protein p53: Mutation, Evolution and Application by Prof. Kazuyasu Sakaguchi; Phylogeography and Population Genetics of Asian Mammals by Prof. Ryuichi Masuda; and, Collaborative Space Development by Philippines and Hokkaido University by Prof. Yukihiro Takahashi.

At the UP Executive House, officials of UP and Hokkaido University, and the newly appointed Hokkaido University Ambassadors and Partner, expressed shared optimism in creating more opportunities for the collaboration and strengthening of existing partnerships. In his message at the Appointment Ceremony, Prof. Ichiro Uyeda, Vice President and Executive Director of the Institute for International Collaboration of Hokkaido University, said they aimed to strengthen relations between the University and its graduates in Japan and abroad; and to build a global network of Hokkaido University partners and supporters. For these purposes, the following were appointed as Hokkaido University Ambassadors: Dr. Amelia Guevara, retired professor of Chemistry, former Vice President for Academic Affairs of the UP System, and former Undersecretary for Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST); Dr. Joel Marciano Jr., professor of Electrical and Electronics Engineering of the College of Engineering, UP Diliman, and Acting Director of the Advanced Science and Technology Institute of DOST; Dr. Derrick Ethelbhert Yu, professor of Chemistry, College of Science, Head of Materials Science and Nanotechnology Research Unit, and Vice Dean of College of Science, De La Salle University, and head of the Hokkaido University Alumni Association in the Philippines; and, appointed as Partner of Hokkaido University, Dr. Evangeline Amor, professor of Chemistry, College of Science, and former University Registrar of UP Diliman.

DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said he is happy with the partnerships, since opportunities such as these also advance science and technology in the country, e.g. further help   the space technology development program.

UP Executive Vice President Teodoro Herbosa likewise expressed gratitude for the continuing partnership between UP and Hokkaido University.

To highlight collaborative efforts in previous years, the Philippines’ first microsatellite, DIWATA-1, was successfully launched into orbit in April 2016. The microsatellite was developed by Tohoku University, Hokkaido University, the DOST and UP Diliman under the DOST-funded research program, “Development of the Philippine Scientific Earth Observation Microsatellite (PHL-MICROSAT)”.

Hokkaido University is one of Japan’s oldest, largest, and most prestigious universities. In preparation for its 150thanniversary celebrations, the University geared itself to “contribute towards the resolution of global issues.” To support and “bring together world-class teaching staff from around the world and within the University” and to promote cultural exchange and internationalization, Hokkaido University’s Global Institution for Collaborative Research and Education has six Global Stations for:  Quantum Medical Science and Engineering; Zoonosis Control; Food, Land and Water Resources; Soft Matter; Big Data and Cybersecurity; and, Arctic Research.

The academic visit was made possible through the initiatives of the UP System’s Office of International Linkages and Hokkaido University’s Institute for International Collaboration and Office for International Academic Support, Faculty of Science. (Fred Dabu, UP MPRO)

For more photos of the event, please click through the album here.