Super Global Universities: Japan

In order to improve Japan’s universities’ global competitiveness, the Education Ministry is going to recognize 30 institutions which conduct cutting-edge research as “Super Global Universities.”

This was decided on April 8, 2014 at a meeting of university representatives and economists.

The result was that 10 schools that are aiming to be included in the world’s top 100 colleges, or “Top Class,” would be funded for ¥500,000,000 (or about US$5,000,000) for a maximum of 10 years. Another 20 domestic schools that conduct cutting-edge research, what they are calling “Globalization Leader Class,” will receive ¥300,000,000 (or about US$3,000,000) for a maximum of 10 years.

They will also be considering schools have connections with colleges abroad, fund study abroad programs, and teach a number of classes in a foreign language (language other than Japanese). They will recognize the 30 institutions in September of this year.
It has been suggested that the money be spent on inviting leading foreign institutions to set up programs in Japan, to attract more foreign teachers and students, and to boost collaboration with other academics overseas to offer joint degrees.

The goal is to have more than 10 Japanese colleges ranked in the top 100 by 2024.

Japan spends 24.2% of its per capita GDP on tertiary education, which is a considerable amount of money considering that Japan has the world’s third largest GDP. The US and UK spend similar portions of their GDP. China also has two colleges in the world’s top 100.

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