After graduating from Sapporo Nishi High School, Dr. Tanaka entered the Hokkaido University School of Agriculture. He then went to Kyoto University for graduate studies, and received his Ph.D. in Agricultural Science from the Division of Applied Biosciences, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University. He specializes in ecology, particularly the changing (evolutionary) relationship between invasive and native species, using insects. From 2008, he served as a coordinator for an educational program in sustainability science based on multinational collaboration at Hokkaido University. Since he was appointed a URA at the URA Station in 2012, he has taken charge mainly of international collaboration initiatives, including those for Arctic research promotion. Since appointed as Deputy Director in 2018, he has also been involved in the management of the organization.
As a member of a collaborative team consisting of executive directors, faculty members, and administrative staff, Dr. Tanaka was involved in the entire process of developing a successful grant proposal for this project from its conceptualization and the preparation of grant proposal documentation to interview.
Dr. Tanaka led the effort to establish the Arctic Research Center. After its establishment, he collaborated with external organizations in initiatives that included the center’s certification as a Joint Usage / Research Center.
Dr. Tanaka was involved in the entire process of developing a grant proposal for this project, including information gathering, conceptualization, the preparation of grant proposal documentation, and coordination among relevant departments. Since the successful adoption of the proposal, he has been involved in the project, hired in a concurrent position, providing support for organizational management and budget requests among other tasks.
I attended an introductory seminar on URAs held at Hokkaido University, where I learned that I had actually been doing what URAs are expected to do. It was also appealing that the URA position is a tenure position.
The best aspect was the opportunity to help Hokkaido University rank within the top 10 in the overall global ranking in the Times Higher Education (THE) University Impact Rankings. My involvement in the university’s efforts since my post-doctoral days had paid off.
Changes that have taken place in the environment surrounding universities since I became a URA nearly a decade ago make me aware of the need to always work with a fresh mind. I welcome problems to keep me from getting in a rut and complacent.
I always try to convince and resonate with cooperators in other departments and organizations to ensure that they can enjoy working with us.