Online Forum by NTNU and Kyushu University Advances Bilateral Collaboration

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In light of the abundant achievements of Kyushu University in academic research and industry-academia cooperation in recent years, and for the sake of continuing to deepen the academic cooperation and exchanges between the two universities, NTNU held an online joint forum with Kyushu University on December 3 of this year. Besides the theme of sustainable development which structured the forum, results of research collaborations by the two universities were also presented along with group discussions in various fields such as science, online education, mathematics for industry. The online forum served to expand the research capabilities of both universities as well as promote and advance their relationship of bilateral collaboration.

NTNU President Cheng-Chih Wu said in his opeing remark that NTNU and Kyushu University have started a strategic partnership since 2018. Faculty from both institutions have visited each other extensively; the two universities have also jointly organized multiple forums and research projects, ever developing more possibilities for further collaboration between the two schools. President Wu also mentioned that, if the pandemic subsides, KYUSHU faculties and students are welcome to visit Taiwan next year to join in celebrating the Centennial Anniversary of National Taiwan Normal University.

National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU) and Kyushu University (KYUSHU) in Japan have been closely linked since the establishment of Taihoku Higher School in 1922. It is estimated that before the end of WWII, more than 200 Taiwanese graduates continued their study at KYUSHU, which makes the two universities have a deep connection.. KYUSHU President Tatsuro Ishibashi mentioned that the relationship between the two universities has become even closer after 2018, and that this inter-university forum is a milestone demonstrating the achievements of their bilateral collaboration. He also expressed hope that there will be more exchange opportunities in the future to allow KYUSHU students to come to NTNU to study the Chinese language and Taiwanese culture.

The forum consisted of three main parts, including the topic of sustainable development, results of collaborative research projects, and multi-disciplinary discussions. In addressing the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 7 (“Affordable and Clean Energy”), Professor Way-Zen Lee, Chair of the Department of Chemistry at NTNU, and Professor Akihito Ozaki of the Department of Planning and Environment at Kyushu University separately presented on new energy sources and plans to improve green architecture, which stimulated deep reflections among forum participants.

The online joint forum hosted by NTNU and KYUSHU is expected to expand the academic research capability of each other as well as promote the advancement of the two universities’ collaborative relationship.
NTNU President Cheng-Chih Wu said ever since NTNU and KYUSHU started a strategic partnership in 2018, the two universities have jointly organized several forums and implemented numerous research projects, ever developing more possibilities for further col
KYUSHU President Tatsuro Ishibashi expressed his hope that there will be even more exchange opportunities in the future, enabling KYUSHU students to come to NTNU to study the Chinese language and Taiwanese culture.

Professor Lee opened with the issue of global warming and shared about the use of manganese corrin ring after reacting with oxygen to convert greenhouse gases into liquid fuel as one solution in the development of new energy sources. Meanwhile, Professor Akihito Ozaki demonstrated green architecture design methods that effectively enhance heat storage or reduce air conditioning use to achieve carbon reduction, even creating zero carbon emission communities to reach the goal of zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

For the collaborative research projects part of the joint forum, two project results were separately presented by Professor Edward Anthony Vickers of the Department of Education at KYUSHU and Professor Ann Heylen of the International Taiwan Studies Center at NTNU regarding research on East Asian popular culture. Professor Heylen pointed out that the faculty exchange program, which began in 2018 and was conducted by the Department of Taiwanese Language and Literature, is currently suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With hope, the exchange program may resume as the pandemic eases. Assistant Professor Chun-Chieh Chang of the Institute of Electro-Optical Engineering at NTNU presented his collaborative research results on behalf of his research partner, KYUSHU Executive Vice President Professor Kaoru Tamada. Their research successfully developed a flexible and highly transmissive multi-resonant color filter with ultra-narrow bandwidth as well as a perovskite-based light-emitting memory device; these results were published in the internationally renowned journals ACS Photonics and Nature Communications. We hope the two universities will continue to broaden in their collaborative projects and beneficial outcomes.

This forum not only attracted faculty and graduate students from both universities to participate in the discussions but also faculty members from other partner schools, including Curtin University and Queensland University of Technology in Australia, Hokkaido University in Japan, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS in Malaysia, Gadjah Mada University and Syiah Kuala University in Indonesia, and the University of the Philippines Diliman, among others. The forum also conducted group discussions on the topics of ‘ Science-related Issues,’ ‘COIL & Online Education,’ and “Mathematics for Industry.’ NTNU Professor Way-Zen Lee; Professor Natalie Konomi of KYUSHU’s Global Strategies Office; and Professor Chun-Chi Lin, Vice President for International Affairs at NTNU, respectively served as moderators for the discussions.

In the closing ceremony, NTNU Executive Vice President Frank Yung-Hsiang Ying thanked all the participants and affirmed that the research findings of faculty members from the two universities are thought-provoking, and that the concept of sustainability has become crucial and greatly impacts society; KYUSHU Executive Vice President Toshiyuki Kono expressed his gratitude to all the participants and organizers, and said that the forum had inspired many students and faculty members. Prof. Kono expressed his hope that the close collaboration between the two universities will continue into the future.