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Philosophy of Establishment and Purpose of Establishment

Philosophy of Establishment

To foster applied information technology specialists with advanced practical abilities and creativity to respond to the needs of society, take charge of the times, and lead the next generation.

Purpose of the Establishment

"Academic freedom and Independence" is an idea which universities in Western Europe declared to be independent from the control against the "ecclesiastical and state power" in Medieval times. Since then, this idea was established as an idea of the traditional universities in Western Europe.

In Japan, in the period of civilization and enlightenment in the Meiji period, this idea was accepted as an idea of a university full of lively vitality. It was made absolute and universalized in domestic universities which increased after the World War II.

At present, however, the number of universities in Japan has increased to more than 600. It is feared that this philosophy has not only been abandoned in many universities (except for "research university") and has become a barrier for industry worker development through university education.

The educational world must respond to the fact that the industry is suffering from a shortage of excellent workers, while the Japanese economy has declined due to the prolonged depression and the bankruptcy of small and medium businesses.We wish above all prosperity for society and the happiness of mankind, and value education for this purpose.KCGI aims to contribute to the realization of Japan's advanced information society and the revitalization of the economy by making the "development of applied information technology specialists with advanced practical skills and creativity to meet the needs of society, take charge of the times, and lead the next generation" the philosophy of its establishment. We respond to the advanced and diverse human resource needs of the IT society, and provide advanced IT professionals with broad knowledge, and internationally minded for the coming ubiquitous age.

New Perspectives of "Industry-oriented"

In the coming broadband and ubiquitous society, computers enter every part of our living space, and they are connected by networks, and function as a social basis of our human life. "Information" is the basis of all social activities. Politics, economy, industry, science and technology, human life, etc. are all linked by the keyword of "Information".

In such an age, it is difficult to develop a new business if we consider only individual advanced technology but also need to be cognizant of social and human aspects. We need to have interdisciplinary knowledge, and deal with it comprehensively. More advanced concepts will be required than solution business in the early IT era. In response to the new trend of the coming ubiquitous age, the academic field of "informatics" was created.Our school specialize in the field of "informatics" but it is not the "informatics" as a "basic research" but the specialized field of applied technology for practitioners.

Needless to say, the emphasis of the practical aspect is the emphasis of the "industry-oriented" viewpoints and needs. We accept the educational inversion structure from the conventional flow of "from academic and technical research and study at universities and graduate schools to industry", and we have made applied information technology constructed in the new, industry-oriented viewpoint as our specialty. We aim at the rearing of advanced solution engineers, business engineers, and in turn, CIO, etc. which correspond to the new business of the ubiquitous society.

Study and Technology for Practical Use

At present, there is a significant gap between the human resources that are produced from general universities in Japan and the human talents that the industry seeks. This may be caused in part by the fact that many universities do not teach academic studies from a practical point of view.

At the establishment of professional graduate school, we positioned our school between academia and industry. Therefore, our educational philosophy is based on pragmatism which makes "practice and practical studies" a value. Pragmatism is a fundamental philosophy of America, and it was not born from the tabletop speculation, but has roots in their pioneering spirit, struggle for life, and democracy during the foundation of the country. It might well be the culmination of those aspects. “In the beginning was the act.” Pragmatism insists that all knowledge is a means and a tool for real life, and the practical effect must be realized in real life through the action. The computer literacy and rapid popularization of IT literacy in U.S.A., and superiority which it surpassed the world in the development technology of IT are due to its pragmatic approach. We, who specialize in applied information technology, emphasize this point, and aim at the training of professionals with more advanced practical technology required by the age and society from the present Web computing age to the coming ubiquitous computing age.

"Innovativeness" and "Pioneering spirit" in education development

The concept of "Information" is enormous, and it evolves in various fields regardless of liberal arts and sciences. For example, business engineers and project managers are cited as the human resources most sought by Industry for the promotion of economic recovery through IT, and both are professionals whose expertise spread in two or more specialized fields. It is an urgent task at present to establish the specialty of the new age in combined areas and to produce talents who meet the needs of the industry.

At the time of the establishment of KCGI, we reorganized some of the existing specialized fields from the viewpoint of "Information" because the specialized fields required by the IT age did not correspond to the existing specialized departments of the university. We established new specialized departments with completely new curriculum emphasizing an "industry-oriented" approach. The current age of "innovative competition" requires the ability to quickly change and produce a new concept. And in the bottom-up dynamics, to preempt the needs of society is a fundamental requirement to win mega competitions.

In these times, it is essential for education to immediately develop and implement educational fields that meet the needs of society, without being bound by the fixed concepts of conventional academic disciplines.

As a fast-moving information-related educational institution, we want to make "innovativeness" and "pioneering spirit" the core of our educational construction.

Creativity and Genuine Education

School education in Japan has been the "transfer and absorption of knowledge" model since the Meiji era. In the industrial society, this education certainly exerted an effect, but in the information society, the brain raised in this typological pattern does not work as a modern "living brain". It was once an ironclad rule to "to learn from one's predecessors" in the society, this learning process is far from creative. At present, societal changes require that we creatively destroy and recreate the road made by our predecessors. Educational reform from "transfer and absorption of knowledge" to "creative development" is urgently needed.

In the information society, "Knowledge" has become a commodity similar to what "Products" were in the industrial society. That is to say, the aspect of the business has changed to solutions business which adds creative value. In this "knowledge-value aera", it is natural that the “living brain” and creativity are more appreciated.

When the history of human civilization generation is traced back, “simple questions" have always reached "discovery of truth" through imagination and logic, and necessity has always been the mother of invention. Beautiful high-strung art was born from aesthetic sensitivity and imagination.

While there are differences among science, technology and art, they are the same in the viewpoint of creative activity. This emphasis on the root causes may lead to the development of creativity. And in learning, we should not specialize in "absorption of knowledge". Rather, we need to re-focus on "voluntary problem discovery and resolution efforts" which is emphasized in the education in U.S.A. as one method of the creativity rearing. We would like to scrap and build the education process of the past with the focus on "creative development".

We aim at human resource education, which is useful for the information industry, At the same time, practically oriented education does not neglect the learning as a theory. In this age of rapid progress and transition of information technology, the technological strength which can withstand the test of time despite challenges is not a simple technique but a "technical ability as a talent" with intelligent understanding and flexible applicability. The cultivation of such a talent is considerably achievable by both teaching academic theories: “universal truth" and fostering the “scientific-thinking mind”. Thus, we aim for establishment of "authentic education" through this educational model.

We, in fact, confirm the raison d’etre of the “University” in the authentic sense, and consider ourselves to belong to its original tradition

Aim to Supply Human Resources for IT Promotion

As mentioned above, business engineers and project managers are presently the most sought after IT human resources in shortage who are expected to take active parts in IT utilization and take initiatives to carry out reforms in order to pave the way for revitalization. Both of those professionals have their expertise in multiple specialized fields.

We focus on the needs of the IT industry, in deciding our program orientation, and set the necessary curriculum. It is exactly the "industry-oriented" educational construction. We believe that we can meet the expectation of the IT industry to train and nurture the sought-after human talents with our "Innovativeness" and "Pioneering spirit".

Recently, small and medium business have fallen into a very serious situation. The small and medium companies often lack the resources or time to construct the education system in the own company and invest high costs for human resource development like larger corporates. From this "shortage of human resources", the IT adoption and diffusion in the smaller business seem to have fallen extremely behind. The weakening of small and medium business is also a result of the failure of business conversion to "digital society". We can speculate that the root cause of the tragedy is a "shortage of human resources".

It is said that only a few percent of small and medium companies in Japan have business engineers as specialists. There is probably a shortage of at least several hundreds of thousands of people. Even if the world's best infrastructure such as optical fiber is completed, it is certain that Japan cannot become the world's best IT nation unless the problem of "shortage of human resources" is resolved.

The revival of the Japanese economy depends on the revival of small and medium business, and KCGI bears responsibility to train the human resources for IT promotion.

From KYOTO – sending out Information upon Culture of Japan

At present, the industry of Japan is struggling in the storm of the depression. However, in Kyoto, there are many business enterprises which grasp the worldwide share and raise the high profit. They say that the reason of the vitality of these Kyoto businesses include: "Kyoto's cultural characteristics of innovativeness", "Kyoto's corporate tradition and belief in high quality and authenticity", "insight into the needs of society", etc.. It is also a well-known fact that Kyoto is the birthplace of multiple global venture companies. Kyoto has been the home base for many Nobel Prize winners as well. Kyoto has been the soil to cultivate creativity in both business and academic fields.

For more than 1000 years, Kyoto has been the center of Japanese culture. We are confident that KCGI will take advantage of "Kyoto", inherit its natural energy, transmit Japan's information culture to the world, and develop greatly.

(April 2004)