By Collaborating between Teaching and Administrative Staff, Promoting Glocalization and Giving Back to the Community
Gifu University Organization for Promotion of Glocalization (GU-GLOCAL) was established on April 1st, 2019 with the aim of promoting glocalization and giving back to the community the fruits.
GU-GLOCAL consists of four main divisions: International Collaborative Education Promotion Division, Glocalization Promotion Division, Study Abroad Promotion Division, International Affairs and Planning Division, and the Center for Japanese Language and Culture.
GU-GLOCAL endeavors to foster internationalization of Gifu University by promoting international collaborative education with a focus on joint degree programs, supporting Japanese students in their study abroad, and assisting international students in their academic activities on campus and dailylife in Japan.
Greetings from the GU-GLOCAL Executive Director
About the Gifu University Organization for Promotion of Glocalization (GU-GLOCAL)Dr. UEMATSU Yoshihiko, Executive Director, GU-GLOCAL
In the midst of environmental transformation in the landscape of higher education, efforts to promote the university’s internationalization and contribution to the local regions play a pivotal role in sharing the research and educational benefits with the regions and strengthening the institutional functions. The Basic Plan for Promoting Education stipulates the future direction of educational policy as follows: “As expecting the further progression of globalization, developing global human resources who possess problem-solving skills for social and global challenges is crucial.” At the core of Gifu University’s internationalization strategy is “Gifu University’s vision for the future,” and establishment of Gifu University Head Office for Glocalization (GHOGL, former the Office for Academic Globalization) headed by Executive Director for International Affairs and Public Relations, Vice President in order to carry out the strategic reforms. The GHOGL consisted of the following three divisions: International Collaborative Education Promotion Division, International Exchange Promotion & International Exchange IR Division and Inbound and Outbound Student Basic Education Promotion Division. In April 2018, the Center for Japanese Language and Culture (formerly called International Student Center) was added into the organizational structure with the goal of strengthening the education system of Japanese language and culture for international students. In 2016 under the leadership of the Executive Director, GU-GLOCAL was given the mandate to form a special working group in preparation for obtaining permission from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) for the establishment of four joint degree programs. Approval was finally obtained in AY2018. It is worthy of note that the joint devotion and enthusiasm among all the staff of Gifu University, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IITG), and the National University of Malaysia (UKM) helped realize the implementation of these international joint masters and doctoral degree programs in April 2019 which aim to foster advanced professionals who are able to address local challenges as well as enhance the excellence of educators and researchers. The university has also put in place academic and welfare support system for JD students. Furthermore, the Japanese government has touted to “promote international students to Japan and strengthen the employment support programs for foreign students in Japanese enterprises” through improvement in Japanese language education and provision of mid- and long-term internship and career education. GU-GLOCAL, which organized a number of cross-departmental educational staff related to internationalization, was established to enable its stakeholders to participate and more effectively contribute in response to meeting both domestic and international needs.
2. Overview of GU-GLOCAL
Gifu University Organization for Promotion of Glocalization (GU-GLOCAL) (refer to the organization chart) was established with the aim of accelerating internationalization of the university and supporting activities which promote internationalization rooted in the local community as well as providing the benefits of internationalization to the community. GU-GLOCAL consists of five main divisions: International Collaborative Education Promotion Division, International Affairs and Planning Division (name changed), Study Abroad Promotion Division (name changed), the Center for Japanese Language and Culture, and Glocalization Promotion Division (the latest division). In addition, Glocalization Promotion Office, a newly-established administrative office supports the Glocalization Promotion Division which promotes employment efforts in local communities through international collaboration among local communities and industries based on joint degree programs. GU-GLOCAL endeavors to collaborate with faculties to foster internationalization of Gifu University through supporting various internationalization activities of its students, teaching and administrative staff.
-Excerpt (modified) of documents reported at Education and Research Council (held on February 21, 2019)
Policy & Vision
1. Internationalization PolicyNovember 21, 2013
Gifu University: Pursuing a global agenda, contributing to local society
As institutions advancing education and research, Japanese universities are expected to possess a wide international scope. Some of Japan's national universities have a strong scientific orientation. They are advancing research that takes a global lead within the domain of science and technology. Others have established themselves as learning centers within their local and regional communities. While elevating their international visibility, these universities are working to foster the next generations of leaders across a wide spectrum of specializations and vocations. Given these national university roles and identities, Gifu University has forged its own unique globalization policy. It is stated as follows:
"Gifu University promotes learning based on the students own efforts. It has reinforced its education quality verification system, trains highly skilled professionals, and undertakes community-based "Teach for Communities" activities. By introducing courses on design ideas in its science and technology Master's programs and stressing liberal arts-based general education, the university strongly promotes the training of students who support innovation. Other priorities include the development of medical education that meets international standards. The university undertakes not only internationalization rooted in the local community, but also glocalization by providing the benefits of internationalization to the local community. The university promotes various policies that lead to internationalization. These include creating a multicultural international liberal arts course, organizing and expanding programs that bring Japanese and international students together, and reinforcing support for international students gaining employment opportunities."
At the core of these Ideals and Aims is Gifu University's basic stance: "To educate and dispatch into the local and global communities people who possess wide perspectives and abundant knowledge, derived from the academics, science and technology cultivated by the university, and who will receive society's trust and confidence." This objective is what the university's globalization effort is oriented to achieving. Over recent years, a trend toward globalization has taken root in Japan as the nation's population shrinks and its society rapidly ages. Moreover, our universities are seeing a decline in the number of Japanese students going abroad and also in the number of international students coming to Japan to study. Against this backdrop, there is a greater need than ever for students to acquire wide international perspectives, in response to which Gifu University seeks to develop students who possess strong language and communication skills and a keen ability to understand other cultures.
All the members of Gifu University's faculty and staff are working to achieve the university's internationalization objectives, while building an undergirding education and research infrastructure throughout the campus.
From a research perspective, Gifu University has established a support system and research environment that provides buoyant global platform for educators and researchers. To our campus, Gifu University invites researchers who are or will play substantial roles on the global stage. With these objectives as the bedrock of our policy for human resource development, Gifu University promotes international cooperation and carries out concrete programs that advance interaction with local communities. The university's educational program includes curricula for Japanese students to study and learn about socioeconomic, political and cultural affairs in both Japan and other countries along with opportunities to learn foreign languages and polish their international communication skills. Programs are also offered for the Japanese students to study abroad.
Concurrently, international students are provided a curriculum especially designed for them to study and learn about similar domestic affairs in Japan. An environment is also established for them to study and live their daily lives smoothly and anxiety-free. Within this setting, the international students study together with Japanese students, and have ample opportunity to interact with people and businesses within Gifu Prefecture. After they graduate or complete their courses, our international students are expected to apply the specialized knowledge and international perspectives they acquired through their studies at Gifu University to contributing to the development of their own countries or the region of Japan centered around Gifu Prefecture.
Toward achieving its globalization policy, Gifu University has established overseas bases. Through them, we select universities and organizations in other countries with which to interact in carrying out active programs of academic exchange. With these counterparts at the core of its internationalization effort, Gifu University both advances education and research and strengthens mutual exchange across a wide spectrum of places and peoples. Most especially, the university is working to tighten its collaborative bonds with education and research institutions in emerging and developing countries.
2. Internationalization Vision
Vision of Gifu University Five Years from Now
- -All the students, faculty and staff of Gifu University will fully comprehend the university's internationalization policy.
- -With a systemic support system to be in place, Gifu University will be carrying out international education and research exchanges that span a wide range of countries.
- -Gifu University will be actively supporting and participating in international exchange activities carried out by local and regional communities.
- -By continuing to establish and maintain overseas bases, Gifu University will bolster its international exchange programs.
- -Gifu University will be working in close collaboration with academic institutions overseas including emerging and developing countries.
- -The students of Gifu University will receive various forms of support for studying abroad in comfortable environments.
- -By enhancing their foreign language skills and cultural understanding, the students of Gifu University will acquire heightened ability to communicate within the international arena.
- -The students of Gifu University will take up the challenge of studying abroad with enthusiasm and a strong sense of purpose.
- -With a robust support system for them at Gifu University, Gifu University international students will be studying in a comfortable, anxiety-free environment, conducive to absorbing Japan's advanced know-how and expertise.
- -Gifu University international students will be using the specializations and international acumen they gained at Gifu University to contribute to development in their home countries and the region.
- -After graduating or completing their courses, Gifu University international students will themselves be cooperating in carrying out Gifu University's education and research activities.
Mid-Term Objectives and Plan
Period III Mid-Term Objectives (Internationalization)
Gifu University undertakes not only internationalization rooted in the local community, but also glocalization by providing the benefits of internationalization to the local community. The university promotes various policies that lead to internationalization. These include creating a multicultural international liberal arts course, organizing and expanding programs that bring Japanese and international students together, and reinforcing support for international students gaining employment opportunities.
Please refer to the following website for further details. (Japanese only)
Mid-Term Objectives and Plan, Annual Plan, and Evaluation （https://www.gifu-u.ac.jp/about/objectives/mid_obj.html）
Period III Mid-Term Plan (Internationalization)
(1) Measures to achieve internationalization go
- 1-i To promote campus internationalization by establishing and utilizing overseas lab stations at partner universities and promoting double degree programs as well as arranging and implementing joint degree programs by 2019.
- 1-ii To support international students’ studies and job hunting opportunities through establishing a strong cooperative network of internship programs with higher educational institutions overseas, and selecting appropriate educational and research training programs and workshops.
- 1-iii To increase the number of outbound Japanese students to over 500 during the Period III Mid-Term Objectives and Plan by establishing and offering various types of short term study-abroad programs.
- 1-iv To accelerate training and professional development of the university’s teaching and administrative staff through development of training programs with overseas partner universities.
- 1-v To conduct Institutional Research analysis on the university's internationalization activities in order to better serve the needs of local companies in their efforts to globalize and make a contribution to the local communities.
- 1-vi To establish programs that bring Japanese and international students together by reviewing and improving English conducted courses with the aim of leveraging fall enrollment in the Graduate School of Applied Biological Sciences and the Graduate School of Engineering, in addition to establishing a liberal arts program at the Faculty of Regional Studies.
Please refer to the following website for further details. (Japanese only)
Mid-Term Objectives and Plan, Annual Plan, and Evaluation（https://www.gifu-u.ac.jp/about/objectives/mid_obj.html）