The "Japan−India University Forum"
held by the heads of top universities in Japan and India

The "Japan−India University Forum" held by the heads of top universities in Japan and India
‘Enhancing Exchanges among Universities and Research Institution in Japan and India, to figure out solutions for future issues’
— Cultivating innovative young researchers with an international outlook —

Event Report

Date & Time January 23, 2023 (Monday) 13:00–16:30 (Japan Standard Time)
Venue Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo
Organaizer Japan Science and Technology Agency Sakura Science Program Headquarters

The Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) Sakura Science Program Headquarters (SSP) held the Japan−India University Forum on January 23, 2023 at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo. This Forum was organized with the aim of creating a foundation for exchange to encourage further cooperation between Japan and India, and was attended by 32 heads of top universities in India and Japan (22 from Japan, 10 from India).

There is a long history of friendship between Japan and India; we have marked the 70th year since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1952, and both countries are strategic partners in diplomacy through the Quad partnership between India, Japan, Australia, and the United States (QUAD) . In the field of science, technology, and innovation (STI) , India has high potential in a large number of fields, such as ICT (including AI) and space/nuclear technology, while Japan is a world leader in fundamental science, materials, life science, the environment, and more. However, the current exchange between India and Japan is not always sufficient in the STI field, and both countries urgently need to play a key role on an international level in the future.

This Forum aimed to explore approaches to open Indo−Pacific collaboration from the perspective of the STI field, such as expanding brain circulation (including wide−ranging research exchange and international study) , by gathering the presidents and acting presidents of top universities and institutions in both countries in one place to work on solving issues.

During the lectures in the first part, the heads of Japanese and Indian universities reported on the current situation and future prospects regarding the past record of Indian−Japanese exchange, outcomes and training, and future directions and issues. During the round table discussion in the second part, the participants held discussions that got to grips with specific details, such as (1) issues when expanding exchange between young people from both countries and ways of solving these and (2) fields in which India−Japan cooperation is expected, methods, and necessary environments, both based on the theme of "the fostering and exchange of young innovators in Japan and India".

The Forum adopted a declaration to take a new step toward building open Indo−Pacific collaboration, and ended successfully after confirming the intent to hold a second forum.

Forum photo 1
Forum photo 2
First session:
  • Opening Remarks by the event organizer (President of JST)
  • Speech by Guests (Deputy Director−General of MEXT / Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of India)
  • Presentations: (From the Presidents of Japanese and Indian Universities)
    "Achievements, results, lessons learned, future directions and challenges of Japan−India exchange"
Second session:
Round−table discussions among the University presidents and Vice−Chancellors
"Fostering and exchanging young innovators in Japan and India"
Declaration adopted, Closing remarks

Declaration for the Japan−India Universities Forum

With the view to realize, a peaceful, open, equitable, stable and rule−based order in the Indo−Pacific region, India and Japan have built a strategic cooperative relationship as countries with shared values. The year 2022 marked the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Japan. Now and in the future, even stronger cooperation and partnership across multiple fields are necessary. On 23 January 2023, presidents and other representatives of 10 Indian universities and 22 Japanese universities and research institutions met in Tokyo for the Japan−India Universities Forum and had active discussions about how to strengthen cooperation between India and Japan. Partnership between India and Japan have built a stronger economic relationship for a long period of time, and we recognize the need to continue to promote cooperation in a wide range of fields, including the security field, and confirmed that it is particularly important to develop young human resources who will be the foundation of the future in both countries and promote collaboration between universities.

Through the forum we recognized that: science, technology and innovation will be a major driving force for the international social economy in the future; cooperation is essential for the mutual development of science, technology and innovation in both countries; research cooperation and people−to−people exchange must be encouraged.

Our conclusions can be summarized as follows:

  1. We recognize the brilliant achievements that have been made by joint research and people−to−people exchanges between Japan and India, as well as the initiatives to promote international exchange, and we appreciate and endorse such efforts.
  2. We understand the importance of contributing to establish comprehensive equal partnership based on the development of science, technology and innovation through global talent circulation, and encourage efforts to promote this. Talented young human resources in India with high potential in the fields of science and technology such as ICT, including the fields of humanities and social sciences should visit Japan to study abroad and conduct research, and Japanese researchers should engage in research and education activities in India.
  3. We have endorsed further strengthen and expand research and people−to−people exchanges between Japan and India. As one of the valuable measures to realize this, we have agreed to the proposal that "JST will provide opportunities for Indian university students who are interested in research and exchange with Japan to experience Japanese universities through the Sakura Science Exchange Program".
  4. Recognizing the importance of this forum as an opportunity to discuss and promote the development of cooperation between the two countries, we endorse its continuation. The second forum will be held in about a year, though the exact date will be decided and prepared for by JST in cooperation with related organizations.
Group photo

Participants for Japan−India Universities Forum

1. Indian Side (total 11)

ANNA University Vice Chancellor Prof. R.VELRAJ
ANNA University Director of Crystal Growth Centre Prof. Moorthy Babu
IIT Bombay Directo Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri
IIT Delhi Deputy Director Prof. Ambuj Sagar
IIT GUWAHATI Officiating Director Prof. P. K. Iyer
IIT Hyderabad Director Prof. B.S.Murty
IIT Hyderabad Associate Professor Prof. Kotaro Kataoka
IIT Kanpur Deputy Director Prof. Sabramaniam. Ganesh
IIT Kharagpur Director Prof. Virendra Kumar Tewari
IIT Madras Senior Most Dean Prof. Koshy Varghese
Jawaharlal Nehru University Vice Chancellor Prof. Santishree D. Pandit

2. Japanese Side Universities (total 22)

Hokkaido University President Dr. HOUKIN Kiyohiro
Tohoku University President Dr. OHNO Hideo
The University of Tsukuba President Dr. NAGATA Kyosuke
The University of Tokyo President Dr. FUJII Teruo ★
The University of Tokyo Executive Vice President Dr. HAYASHI Kaori
Tokyo Institute of Technology President Dr. MASU Kazuya
Keio University President Dr. ITOH Kohei
Keio University Professor Dr. RAJIB Shaw
Shibaura Institute of Technology President Dr. YAMADA Jun
Waseda University Vice President Dr. GEMMA Masahiro
Yokohama National University President Dr. UMEHARA Izuru
Niigata University Vice President Dr. Madhusoodhan Satish Kumar
Nagaoka University of Technology President Dr. KAMADO Shigeharu
Gifu University President Dr. YOSHIDA Kazuhiro
Shizuoka University Vice President Dr. KONDO Makoto
Nagoya University President Dr. SUGIYAMA Naoshi
Kyoto University President Dr. MINATO Nagahiro
Ritsumeikan University President Dr. NAKATANI Yoshio
Osaka University President Dr. NISHIO Shojiro ★
Osaka University Executive Vice President Dr. ONOYE Takao
Hiroshima University President Dr. OCHI Mitsuo
Kyushu University President Dr. ISHIBASHI Tatsuro

3. Japanese Side Institutions (total 4)

Japan International Cooperation Agency
Senior Vice President Ms. IMOTO Sachiko
National Institute of Advanced Industrial
Science and Technology (AIST)
President and CEO Mr. ISHIMURA Kazuhiko ★
National Institute of Advanced Industrial
Science and Technology (AIST)
Executive Officer Dr. TAMURA Tomohiro
National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) President Dr. HONO Kazuhiro

★ Attended only the Exchange Meeting