Advancing the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities

 

Overview

Hokkaido University is part of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology’s “Project to Promote Strengthening as a Research University,” and it is implementing various measures and university reforms to strengthen its research capabilities. Specifically, the university aims to strengthen the president’s governance and to implement the following: “Diversify human resources,” “Create and disseminate cutting-edge research to the world,” and “Strengthen cooperation with society to solve (global/social) problems.” To accomplish these goals, the university is in the process of setting and achieving performance targets and indicators.

The Research Development Section, an organization directly under the president’s administration, is responsible for implementing these measures. As such, it is working with the Office for Research Promotion Hub to carry out various activities, including project planning, progress management, and budget creation. In addition, the Research Development Section is conducting various planning activities to further promote the program based on policies from the president and executive responsible for research.

Necessary for university reform is the establishment of a URA who oversees university administration and management human resources. In order to advance reforms and bring about greater independent and strategic university management, the Hokkaido University Research Development Section is strengthening the URA as an administrative and managerial power and disseminating information about the department inside and outside the university. The Research Development Section is actively rotating its staff, allowing each employee to gain experience in both the URA and related positions, and will endow the URA with advanced management capabilities throughout the project to strengthen the university’s research capacity.

 

List of activities

Planning and implementing system reforms to strengthen research capabilities

The Research Development Section is working with the Office for Research Promotion Hub to implement the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities. The two departments are working together on other initiatives as well, including planning, progress management, and budget creation. The Research Development Section has responded to the interim evaluation conducted in September 2017, and compiled the program’s future goals based on the policies of the president and the executive responsible for research. Using this information, we have started to move forward on projects promoting a stronger research university.
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The establishment of the URA position

Establishing the URA as “university administration and management specialists” is one of Hokkaido University’s most important foundations of management. In order to increase awareness of URA both inside and outside the university and to establish the position within the university management system, Hokkaido University is actively disseminating information through the Research Development Section, enhancing the URA training curriculum, and working toward the introduction of a URA job rotation system.
View details

Promoting university management reforms

The Research Development Section is rapidly implementing reforms in university management based on the goals of the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities. In 2017, we focused on the following five projects: “Planning and implementing system reforms to strengthen research capabilities,” “Implementing university administration and management to utilize university IR (Institutional Research),” “Constructing a top-down landmark research center,” “Constructing a system to improve the entire university’s fundamental research stage,” and “Coordinating the university’s administrative and management specialists.”
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Response to the post-project evaluation (establishing a research administration system)

After this project ended in fiscal year 2016, the Research Development Section compiled a post-project evaluation. In November 2017, an outside evaluation team interviewed the Research Development Section to gather responses to this evaluation, based on the policies of the president and the executive responsible for research. Responses included opinions on future prospects.

 

Team members

 

Shingo Ebata (Chief Officer)

Deputy Director of the Research Development Section
Senior Research Manager
Adviser to the Global Facility Center

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Activity descriptions

Planning and implementing system reforms to strengthen research capabilities

The Research Development Section is working with the Office for Research Promotion Hub to implement the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities. The two departments are working together on other initiatives as well, including planning, progress management, and budget creation. The Research Development Section has responded to the interim evaluation conducted in September 2017, compiled the program’s future goals based on the policies of the president and executive responsible for research. Using this information, we have started to move forward on projects promoting a stronger research university.

 

The establishment of the URA position

Establishing the URA as “university administration and management specialists” is one of Hokkaido University’s most important foundations of management. In order to increase awareness of URA both inside and outside the university and to establish the position within the university management system, Hokkaido University is actively disseminating information through the Research Development Section, enhancing the URA training curriculum, and working toward the introduction of a URA job rotation system.

<Examples of activities>

Disseminating information regarding the Research Development Section

In order to increase awareness of the Research Development Section and its work among stakeholders both within and outside of the university, we have developed this website to describe the university’s management strategy and efforts to strengthen research. We are actively disseminating information via this site, and working to further increase its public relations capabilities.
On this website, we have published the results of the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities and our vision for the future; this information and the status of on-going projects is constantly updated. Also, we intend to improve real-time cooperation with the university’s public relations teams in order to better the timeliness of our updates even further, as well as include information relevant to future seminars and symposiums.

Establishing a URA job rotation system

In order to train advanced university administration and management personnel, it is necessary to increase the management skills of promising URAs or university staff serving in similar positions. Therefore, at Hokkaido University, we are establishing a job rotation system integrating the URA position with similar positions and enabling staff to acquire work experience in multiple positions related to university administration and management.

Enhancing URA training

The URA is a specialist position, and yet skill standards and learning methods have yet to be established. In the Research Development Section we seek to enhance the URA training system so that URAs can be raised up, continuously improve their job skills, and gain advanced personnel skills. In order to accomplish this, we are implementing the following:

  • Holding advanced seminars toward improving URAs’ expertise
  • Developing and implementing external URA training applying it to work at the university
  • Launching a channel to announce the activities of the Research Development Section
  • Studying the systematization of developing URA capabilities

 

Promoting university management reforms

The Research Development Section is rapidly implementing reforms in university management based on the goals of the Program for Promoting the Enhancement of Research Universities. In 2017, we focused on the following five projects: “Planning and implementing system reforms to strengthen research capabilities,” “Implementing university administration and management to utilize university IR (Institutional Research),” “Constructing a top-down landmark research center,” “Constructing a system to improve the entire university’s fundamental research stage,” and “Coordinating the university’s administrative and management specialists.”

<List of activities>

 

Response to the post-project evaluation (establishing a research administration system)

After this project ended in fiscal year 2016, the Research Development Section compiled a post-project evaluation. In November 2017, an outside evaluation team interviewed the Research Development Section to gather responses to this evaluation, based on the policies of the president and the executive responsible for research. Responses included opinions on future prospects.

<List of materials and results>

Related Events

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Date Event
June 2 (Sapporo), 4 (Tokyo), and 6 (Osaka), 2014 Hokkaido University URA Recruiting Seminar
September 17–18, 2014 The 4th URA Symposium/The 6th RA Research Meeting
June 10–12 (Sapporo), 13 (Tokyo), 2015 Hokkaido University URA Recruiting Seminar
August 5, 2015 The 6th URA Advanced Seminar (Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research policy seminars): “Researchers Be Ambitious: Trends in and Prospects for Reform to Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research”
September 30, 2015 Hokkaido University URA Strengthening Campaign! Stage 1: New URA Recruitment Briefing—“What is an URA?”
October 6, 2015 Hokkaido University URA Strengthening Campaign! Stage 2: “Hokkaido University URA symposiums—The Aims for Hokkaido University URAs”
October 7, 2015 Hokkaido University URA Strengthening Campaign! Stage 3: The 7th URA Advanced Seminar—“The Aims for Kyoto University, Nagoya University, and Hokkaido University URAs”
March 8, 2016 The 5th HU Cross-Road Gathering & The 9th URA Advanced Seminar: “Come on, let’s apply to PRESTO and CREST!”
March 14, 2016 The 10th URA Advanced Seminar 2016 AMED: “Medical Field Research Findings Development Project: Advanced Measurement and Analysis Technologies and Equipment Development Program” Recruitment Briefing
May 24, June 2, 2016 URA Vision Meeting
June 6, 2016 The 7th HU Cross-Road Gathering & The 11th URA Advanced Seminar : “Competitive External Funds are a Concern for Everyone. How Are You Going About It?”
July 12, 2016 12th URA Advanced Seminar, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications’ Research Grants Project: Study Meeting
July 29, 2016 13th URA Advanced Seminar (Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research Policy Seminar): “The Current State of the Reforms to Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research”
September 16 and 29, October 3–5, 2016 Hokkaido University URA Recruiting Seminar
September 30, 2016 New URA Recruiting Seminar
October 18, 2016 14th URA Advanced Seminar: Kyushu University URA Information Exchange Meeting
November 7, 2016 15th URA Advanced Seminar: University of Tsukuba and Yokohama National University URA Information Exchange Meeting
November 29, 2016 16th URA Advanced Seminar (co-hosted by GFC): “The Management of Nippon Light Metal Company, Ltd.”
December 21, 2016 Evaluability Assessment Workshop 5: The Design of Hokkaido University’s Research Management Strategy in Five Years’ Time
March 1, 2017 17th URA Advanced Seminar 2017 AMED: “Medical Field Research Findings Development Project: Advanced Measurement and Analysis Technologies and Equipment Development Program,” Recruitment Briefing
March 9, 2017 18th URA Advanced Seminar: “National Institutes of Natural Sciences URA Information Exchange Meeting”
May 9, 2017 19th URA Advanced Seminar & PRESTO Application Support Seminar: “Come on, let’s apply to PRESTO! Special Seminar Immediately Before the Applications 2017”
July 13, 2017 20th URA Advanced Seminar (Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research Policy Seminar): “Briefing for Researchers on the Reforms to the Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research”
August 9, 2017 21st URA Advanced Seminar (Symposium on the Strategy to Acquire Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research): “What Researchers Should Know About Acquiring Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research for Large-Scale Projects”

 


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