UQ and Japan

Collaborating to change the world

UQ has strong links with Japan. Through partnerships with some of the country's most influential institutions and organisations, including the University of Tokyo and the Riken Institute, UQ graduates are equipped with the linguistic, cultural, and research competencies needed to thrive in today’s global community.

Fast facts



150

Japanese students enrolled at UQ


146

Japan-UQ co-publications


11

academic staff born in Japan


6

research project collaborations


970

alumni in Japan


57

agreements with 33 official partners

Research

Co-publications

Japan and UQ have partnered on more than 650 co-publications in the past 5 years, with key research areas including materials science; chemistry; public, environmental, and occupational health; genetics; and nanoscience. UQ's top co-publishing partners in this period are the University of Tokyo, the National Institute of Materials Science, Kyoto University, Osaka University, and Hokkaido University.

Research collaborations

In the past 5 years, UQ has collaborated with 16 Japanese institutions on 21 UQ-led research projects worth more than AUD 11.8 million (YEN 1023.8 million). Our top collaborators are the Riken Institute, the University of Tokyo, and Osaka University, with research covering diverse topics including integrative brain function, quantum technology, and spacecraft fire safety.

Research funding

UQ has received more than AUD 5.6 million (YEN 485.9 million) for 30 research projects from 5 Japanese organisations since 2012. 6 active projects are being funded by the Asia-Pacific research agency Asian Office of Aerospace Research and Development, and 3 by mining services company Nihon Superior Co

Collaboration in action

 

50 years of Japanese language

2016 marked a milestone for UQ: 50 years since the Department of Japanese Studies (now the School of Languages and Cultures) was established. A number of events helped mark the occasion, including Master of Arts in Japanese Interpreting and Translation Forums, a Japanese Language and Careers Engagement Forum, student performances (featuring the Osaka School of Music, Fukuoka School of Music and Dance, and Tokyo School of Music and Dance) and a research symposium. In 1980, UQ initiated the first program in Japanese translation and interpreting in the Southern Hemisphere. Today, Japanese is one of the most commonly studied languages in Australia, including at UQ, where there were more than 1,800 enrolments in around 50 courses in 2016.  View the 50 Years of Japanese gallery.

Libraries of information hidden in DNA

UQ's involvement in the FANTOM (Functional Annotation of the Mammalian Genome) team has resulted in long-term collaboration with Japan’s largest research institute, the RIKEN Institute. The project, which involves scientists from more than 20 countries, is revealing what researchers have termed 'libraries' of new information on the role of previously unknown genes. The 5th iteration of the collaboration, known as FANTOM 5, has brought together stem cell biology, infection, and immunity researchers from RIKEN Institute and UQ's Diamantina Institute, the Australian Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, and the School of Biomedical Sciences.

Pushing the limits in design and manufacturing

The Nihon Superior Centre for the Manufacture of Electronic Materials, part of the UQ School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, was established in 2012 to bring world-class research capability to the manufacture of electronic materials. The Centre specialises in the development of lead-free soldering and brazing alloys, and the manufacture of materials for energy storage and transport materials including hydrogen storage and novel solid-state anode materials. Kyushu University (Fukuoka) alumnus Associate Professor Kazuhiro Nogita heads the Centre, bringing a strong background in the development of materials for alternative power industries and environmentally friendly applications.

Pushing the limits of imaging technology

Magnetica, a UQ start-up commercialised through UniQuest, is developing the next generation of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technologies. Based on research by UQ’s Centre for Advanced Imaging and the Biomedical Engineering Group, Magnetica magnets are manufactured in Japan via a strategic partnership with Japan Superconductor Technology (Jastec), a subsidiary of multinational manufacturer Kobe Steel. Since its inception in 2005, Magnetica has remained at the forefront of extremity MRI systems technology, successfully designing and commercialising the 1.5T extremity MRI magnet that is now the heart of hundreds of MRI systems sold world-wide.

Developing the workforce of tomorrow

UQ’s Institute of Continuing & TESOL Education (ICTE-UQ) is working with government and industry partners in Japan to deliver a range of English language and professional development programs that will contribute to a more internationally engaged workforce. Programs have included English for International Business Communication courses, as well as ‘Go Global’ English language, workplace preparation, and professional internship placement programs for university students, recent graduates, and young professionals. In 2016, more than 2,100 Japanese students were enrolled in ICTE-UQ programs

English courses | 英語コース

Japanese students at UQ

More than 400 Japanese students have enrolled in UQ degrees in the past 5 years. The Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts in Japanese Interpreting and Translation, and Bachelor of Business Management are the most popular program choices.

The UQ Japanese Society (Wasabi), UQ Japanese Taiko Drumming Team, and SMACK UQ (Super Manga Anime Culture Kingdom) are just some of the clubs and societies on campus that provide a platform for sharing cultures and welcoming Japanese students to UQ.

Video: Ryoko Yahagi, from Japan, recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts at UQ. She was chosen as a Brisbane International Student Ambassador in 2014.

Japanese culture at UQ

 

UQ students can study Japanese through the School of Languages and Cultures, which offers a wide range of courses from beginner to advanced language level. Students can take courses focusing on Japanese popular culture, literature, and interpreting and translation while developing spoken and written language skills. They also have access to one of the top interpreter training facilities in Australia, equipped with a simultaneous interpreting booth constructed to United Nations standards.

The Institute of Modern Languages (IML) at UQ also offers Japanese courses for the wider community.

Video: What to expect studying Japanese at UQ and where graduates can go.

Student mobility

Student exchange

Japan is the most popular exchange destination in Asia for UQ students and the 7th largest globally. UQ has student exchange agreements with 22 universities in Japan, including the University of Tokyo, Kyoto University, and Osaka University. Under these agreements, 169 UQ students studied in Japan and 144 Japanese students studied at UQ in the past 5 years.

New Colombo Plan Scholarship Program

In 2017, Bachelor of International Studies student Kate Goodfruit is studying at Kyushu University as a New Colombo Plan (NCP) Scholar. She follows Bachelor of International Studies student Lachlan Kenway who studied at Waseda University and undertook an internship in the banking sector in 2016, and Bachelor of Engineering and Economics student Kristie Higginson who studied international business and economics at Waseda University in 2015 as part of the NCP pilot program.

KOMSTUDY

KOMSTUDY is a short-term study program that enables UQ Japanese language students to participate in courses at Komazawa University during the Australian summer vacation and gain academic credit for their studies. It also provides them with the opportunity to form friendships with Komazawa students and experience Japanese hospitality in a homestay. More than 500 UQ students have participated in the program since in began in 1989.

Creating opportunities for future engineers

In July 2017, with funding from the New Colombo Plan Mobility Program, Mechanical and Mining Engineering undergraduates will experience Japan's manufacturing sector first-hand. Students will travel to Japan for a series of lectures on manufacturing and Japanese language, and a hands-on tour of manufacturing facilities in Fukuoka, including Toyota, Nissan, and Panasonic. The study tour is being facilitated by the Kyushu Economic Federation.

Alumni

920 alumni live in Japan and more than 1,500 were born there, including:

Japan alumni

Researcher and educator (Bachelor of Arts (Honours) 1994; PhD 1999; International Alumnus of the Year 2011)
Partner, King & Spalding (Bachelor of Arts 1998; Bachelor of Laws 1999)
Melanie Brock
Chair Emeritus of Australia and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (Bachelor of Arts 1989; Master of Literary Studies 1990)
Dr Yoshitaka Hosoi
Senior Advisor for Natural Resources, Japan International Cooperation Agency (PhD 2009)

Staff

UQ is privileged to have approximately 14 academic staff members who were born in Japan. A few senior staff include:

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Fast facts based on 2016 full year data.