The University of Warwick is set to further strengthen its global links by formally announcing an association with RIKEN Institute to offer support for researchers affected by the Great East Japan earthquake of 2011. RIKEN is widely regarded as one of the most eminent research institutes in the world; with its seven sites across Japan and some 3,000 researchers, its strengths lie particularly in the Natural Sciences field.
In the summer of 2011 the University of Warwick began to offer support to Japanese academics affected by the earthquake via a ‘Japan Researcher Support Programme’. This was based on a support programme offered by RIKEN. Now the University of Warwick and RIKEN have joined forces to offer support to RIKEN researchers.
In an agreement reached by the organisations, up to two researchers and two graduate students from RIKEN will visit Warwick to collaborate on research projects where their academic expertise will be shared and pooled to enhance scientific research.
RIKEN has a similar agreement with just three other institutions across the world: Academica Sinica in Taiwan, the University of Strasbourg in France and the Max Planck Institutes in Germany.
Professor Nigel Thrift, Vice-Chancellor for the University of Warwick, said: “We are committed to building our academic global partners and strengthening our collaborative work with RIKEN and this new agreement will mean that we can plan for further development to enhance our joint research.”
Speaking from RIKEN, their Executive Director, Professor Maki Kawai, said:
"We are extremely grateful for the warm support and assistance that the University of Warwick offered to RIKEN’s researchers and students immediately after the tragic Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011.
“It is tremendously reassuring to know that we have such a staunch partner in the United Kingdom."
Dr. William Mitchell, Head of Partnerships and Assistant Director of the International Office at Warwick, is set to visit Japan next week to finalise details for the next set of academic exchanges.
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