Activity Report

Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.30

Cultivating human resources that will bridge Thailand and Japan in the future

Report from Osaka University Graduate School of Science

The Osaka University Graduate School of Science conducted a research exchange program, for 1 doctoral researcher, 5 post graduate students, 2 college students from Chiang Mai University in northern Thailand, and 2 college students from Payao University, a total of 10 people, from February 1st (Thursday) to December 9th (Friday).

The educational economy level has been rapidly increasing in the northern part of Thailand in recent years, and we are making strong efforts in the development of human resources for the future and the expansion of the chemical industry that can become a potential key industry. In this program, we invite young researchers and students in the area, and increase interest in Japan by having them visit the Kansai area research facilities and companies. We also are planning to cultivate human resources that will bridge Thailand and Japan in the future.

image1 Group photo taken at the certificate award ceremony

The group that came to Japan visited the departments at the Osaka University, which is the hosting school. They then visited various facilities and laboratories of Osaka University for over 2 days, and exchanged opinions related to research with a view on future study in Japan and collaborative research.

image2 Department introduction by Chemistry department head Professor Kubo Takashi
image3 A visit to laboratory

In addition, we conducted a mini symposium as a joint research presentation. Chemical research using Thailand’s natural resources, and research on complex chemistry in which Osaka University has expertise were announced. In the exchange meeting after the symposium, a majority of faculty members and students of the Osaka University participated unofficially, in addition to students in the host laboratory and Thailand students, and it became an active seminar. With the inspiration from the Thai students, the usually silent Japanese students who are not good at English, talked clearly and briskly in English looking forward to deepening the exchanges, and the president was also surprised.

image4 Lecturers of mini symposium etc.
image5 Students from both Japan and Thailand at the exchange meeting

In addition to Osaka University, they visited Osaka City University and Osaka Prefecture University, and were introduced to the distinctive features of each university. They got a clear explanation about the facilities and research results of the Artificial Photosynthesis Research Center by the Director of the Yutaka Amao center at Osaka City University. At Osaka Prefecture University, Professor Hiroyuki Matsuzaka served as a guide and introduced some of the laboratories and facilities at the “Research Center for the 21st Century”.

image6 Center introduction from the Director Mr. Amao
image7 Great interest in self-built devices

We also visited SPring-8, the synchrotron radiation research facility that boasts the world's top performance, and SK KAKEN Co., Ltd., a chemical manufacturer developing for Southeast Asia based in the Kansai area, and were given tours of these facilities.
In SPring-8, we entered inside the hatch of the beam line, which is the actual location of research, and interacted with scientists on the spot.
At the SK KAKEN Co., Ltd., the signs of Thailand development by the Japanese enterprises was introduced, and opinions were exchanged about the acceptance of Thai students to the enterprises.

image8 Participants looking closely at SPring-8's custom diffractometer
image9 Debate on employment at Japanese enterprises

We also visited cultural facilities in the Kansai area such as Himeji Castle, Osaka Castle, the National Museum of Ethnology etc. in between the tours and debates. It was a relaxing time in our busy schedule, and also an opportunity to get exposed to Japanese culture.

In a questionnaire to the participants, many comments such as “In the future, I wish to come back as a student or researcher to Japan or Osaka University” were seen. With this occasion as the opportunity, we look forward to each other, for the research exchange activities at the young researcher level, and more activity in the Student's short-term/long-term study overseas.

image10 Commemorative photo against a background of World Heritage - Himeji Castle