Towards Building a Center of Excellence for Research in Integrative Science
Creative Research Institution (CRIS) is a core research and development organization of Hokkaido University (HU) situated in the North Campus in Sapporo. CRIS has been dedicated to execution of three major objectives: (i) promoting cutting-edge and interdisciplinary research and knowledge creation, (ii) collaborating with economic and regional communities via strong alliances, and (iii) developing human resources, from the HU-wide perspective.
The Research Department of CRIS has 3 research-dedicated divisions: Division of Frontier Research for the basic research as per HU’s strategy, Strategic Priority Research Division for externally-funded research projects, and Project Research Division for collaborative research with industries or the business sector. Following the adoption of the Hokkaido University Research & Business Park (HUR&BP) Project, a MEXT (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology) Super-COE Program for Encouraging Development of Strategic Research Centers, in FY2003, CRIS had also implement projects dedicated to promotion of the industry-university alliances. This industrial alliance function, however, is currently transferred to the new Institute for the Promotion of Regional-Business Collaboration established at the same Northern Campus Area.
CRIS established the Global Facility Center (GFC) in FY2016 by further developing the ‘Open Facility’ system, for sharing advanced equipment, cultivated for over 10 years. Apart from the existing functions as an Open Facility, GFC now receives instrumental analysis requests and also promotes international collaboration by making the university’s highly sophisticated research instruments accessible to users from outside Japan.
The Northern Campus Area boasts of 3 research facilities (CRIS, Research Bldg. No. 3 as an extension of CRIS, and Center for Promotion of Platform for Research on Bio-functional Molecules) having rental laboratory spaces of various sizes, wet laboratories, and animal rearing and experimental laboratories and providing an environment for R&D in diverse fields.
Through concentration of large-scale and sophisticated laboratories and equipment at CRIS, we are striving at creating an environment for smooth execution of large-scale integrative projects. I firmly believe that the Northern Campus area has an infrastructure to enable the acquisition of various research grants through collaborative efforts of HU’s researchers that transcend the departmental boundaries and industries, and to conduct large-scale research in order to build one of the World’s Top Research & Education Center of Excellence.
In the future, we will put efforts to equip CRIS with an environment, facilities and research support system aiming at attracting the cutting-edge and large-scale research programs/facilities and thereby promoting residential-type research projects. By fully utilizing the potential of HU’s research-oriented organizations, linking and interlocking them, and pursuing more dynamic and strategic research themes, in the meantime, we will be aiming at developing CRIS into a truly international research center in integrative science.
CRIS Executive Director, and
Executive and Vice President, Hokkaido University
Prof. Dr. Junji NISHII