The 1st SPARC-GIFU Symposium

On Wednesday, March 13, 2024, the '1st SPARC-GIFU Symposium' was held at the Gifu University Auditorium in both in-person format and simultaneous web streaming.

In 2022, Gifu University was selected for MEXT1's 'Human Resource Development for Regional Revitalization: Supereminent Program for Activating Regional Collaboration (SPARC).' Ever since, three universities within Gifu Prefecture, Gifu University, Chubu Gakuin University, and Gifu City Women's Junior College have been carrying out the 'Gifu Region Human Resource Development Program: to establish academic infrastructure for regional revitalization (SPARC-GIFU).'

The symposium commemorated the establishment the 'General Incorporated Association of Gifu Higher Education Network' on November 1, 2023, and the formation of 'SPARC-GIFU Regional Partnership Platform' on November 20, 2023, both of which have been the driving force to materialize SPARC programs. At the symposium, officials from three universities introduced their activities and discussed the expansion of the programs, with the representatives from academia, industry, government, and financial institutions for human resource development and regional revitalization. Over 100 people attended the 1st SPARC-GIFU Symposium either in-person or via the web.

The symposium started with opening remarks by the presidents of Gifu University, Chubu Gakuin University, and Gifu City Women's Junior College. They were followed by the SPARC program overview provided by Mr. YAMADA Taizo from the Higher Education Bureau at MEXT. Next, presentations were made by the representatives from the three universities on their respective SPARC-GIFU activities. The symposium also featured a lecture by Professor OKUDA Toru, Trustee and Vice President of the University of Yamanashi (Yamanashi Prefecture), and a panel discussion involving SPARC-GIFU Regional Partnership Platform members. Participants engaged in lively exchanges, discussing current challenges and expectations related to the SPARC-GIFU programs, with the people from academia, industry, government, and financial institutions. Feedback from the attendees highlighted the value of having different perspectives not only from universities but also from businesses and industry, as well as importance of tackling socioeconomic challenges as part of university education. A lot of positive feedback will definitely help all concerned to further accelerate their SPARC activities.

We remain committed to advancing the SPARC-GIFU programs and deeply appreciate people's understanding and support for our initiatives.

1) Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan

President YOSHIDA Kazuhiro giving his speech
Mr. Yamada explaining SPARC programs
Professor Okuda speaking as invited lecturer
Panel discussion


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