Tohoku University

Tohoku University (東北大学 (東北帝國大學 prior to 1945) Tōhoku daigaku), abbreviated to Tohokudai (東北大 Tōhokudai), located in Sendai, Miyagi in the Tōhoku Region, Japan, is a Japanese national university. It was the third Imperial University in Japan and is one of the National Seven Universities. It is considered one of the most prestigious universities in Japan, and one of the top fifty universities in the world.[1][2]

In 2016, Tohoku University had 10 faculties, 16 graduate schools and 6 research institutes, with a total enrollment of 17,885 students.[3] The university's three core values are "Research First (研究第一主義)," "Open-Doors (門戸開放)," and "Practice-Oriented Research and Education (実学尊重)."

Tohoku University
Tohoku University logo
Motto実学尊重の精神 (Practice-Oriented Research and Education)
TypePublic (National)
EstablishedJune 22, 1907
EndowmentUS$1.3 billion
(JP¥120,138 billion)
PresidentHideo Ohno
Administrative staff
Other students
1,346 (international students)
Location, ,
2.5 km²
Athletics-- varsity teams
Colors     Purple
AffiliationsAPRU, AEARU, HeKKSaGOn, T.I.M.E., RENKEI


Tohoku University(Katahira north gate)
Tohoku University (Katahira campus Main Gate)

The origin of the university was Meirin-yokendo (明倫養賢堂 Meirin yōkendō), which was founded as a medical school in Sendai in 1736. It was reorganized a few times. Later it became Sendai Medical College (仙台医学専門学校 Sendai igaku senmon gakkō); this was the forerunner of the medical department of the university.

On June 22, 1907, the university was established under the name Tohoku Imperial University (東北帝國大學 Tōhoku teikoku daigaku) by the Meiji government as the third Imperial University of Japan, following the Tokyo Imperial University (1877) and the Kyoto Imperial University (1897). From its start, it has advocated "Open-door" policies—it was the first university in Japan to accept female students (in 1913)[4] and foreign students.

In September 1907, it set up the faculty of Agriculture in Sapporo; the Sapporo Agricultural College (札幌農學校 Sapporo nō gakkō).

It set up the Science Department in 1911, and the Medical Department (formerly the Sendai Medical College) in 1915. In 1918 it ceded the Faculty of Agriculture to Hokkaido Imperial University. It subsequently launched Faculties of Engineering in 1919, and Law and Literature in 1922.[5]

In 1947 the university assumed its current name, Tohoku University, acquired a new Faculty of Agriculture. In 1949, the Faculty of Law and Literature was split to form new faculties of Law, Literature, and Economics. A Faculty of Education was added in 1949, Dentistry in 1965, and Pharmacy in 1972. Tohoku has been a national university corporation since April 2004.[5]

2011 Tōhoku earthquake

Subsequent to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, the university was declared closed until further notice, but with a tentative re-opening date of the end of the following April.[6]

The Aobayama, Katahira, Amamiya, and Kawauchi campuses are all at least 12 kilometers (7.5 mi) from the ocean, towards the mountains, and therefore suffered no damage resulting from the tsunami. No deaths or serious injuries within the faculty and student body were reported on campus grounds. However, earthquake damage lead to the closure of 27 buildings and caused millions of dollars of damage to equipment. Classes have resumed normally since early May 2011 and plans for restoring, reinforcing or replacing damaged buildings are underway.

The radiology department has been actively measuring radiation levels throughout the city of Sendai since the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant meltdown, which is about 100 kilometers south. So far no alarming levels of radiation have been detected.


Sendai Map

Principal four campuses are in the Sendai City, Japan;

  • Katahira (片平 Katahira)
Administration Unit. and Principal institutes
  • Kawauchi (川内 Kawauchi)
North-Kawauchi; The freshmen and sophomore of all undergraduates
South-Kawauchi; Law, Education, Economics, Letters
  • Seiryo (星陵 Seiryō)
Medicine, Dentistry
  • Aobayama (青葉山 Aobayama)
Science, Engineering, Pharmacy, Agriculture

Amamiya campus and some institutes transferred to the new extension at Aobayama campus in April 2017[1].


Research complex lab
Graduate School of Engineering (Research Lab Complex)

Faculties (10)

  • Arts and Letters
  • Education
  • Law
  • Economics
  • Science
  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Engineering
    • Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
    • Information and Intelligent Systems
    • Applied Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Bio molecular Engineering
    • Materials Science and Engineering
    • Civil Engineering and Architecture
  • Agriculture

Graduate Schools (15)

  • Arts and Letters
  • Education
  • Law
  • Economics and Management
  • Science
  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Engineering
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • International Cultural Studies
  • Information Sciences
  • Life Sciences
  • Environmental Studies
  • Educational Informatics Research Division / Education Division

Professional graduate schools (3)

  • Law School
  • School of Public Policy
  • Accounting School

The University's Research Center for Prediction of Earthquakes and Volcanic Eruptions is represented on the national Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction.[7]

Research institutes

  • Research Institute of Electrical Communication (電気通信研究所, 通研 Denki Tsūshin Kenkyūsjo, Tsūken)[8]
  • Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer (加齢医学研究所 Karei Igaku Kenkyūjo)[9]
  • Institute of Fluid Science (流体科学研究所 Ryūtai Kagaku Kenkyūsyo)[10]
  • Institute for Materials Research,IMR (金属材料研究所, 金研 Kinzoku Zairyō Kenkyūsjo, Kinken)[11]
National Collaborative Research Institute
  • Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials (多元物質科学研究所 Tagen Busshitsu Kagaku Kenkyūjo)[12]
  • International Research Institute of Disaster Science (災害科学国際研究所 Saigai Kagaku Kokusai Kenkyūjo)[13]

Centers and facilities

University library

  • Tohoku University Library
  • Medical Library
  • Kita-Aobayama Library
  • Engineering Library
  • Agricultural Library

University hospital

  • Tohoku University Hospital Seiryo

Inter-Department Institutes for Education and Research (9)

  • Center for Northeast Asian Studies
  • Center for the Advancement of Higher Education
    • Health Administration Center
    • University Counseling Center
    • Admission Center
    • Center for Career Support
  • The Center for Academic Resources and Archives
  • Institute for International Advanced Research and Education Organization
  • Cyclotron and Radioisotope Center
  • New Industry Creation Hatchery Center(NICHe)
  • Center for Interdisciplinary Research
  • Technology Center for Research and Education Activities
    • Center for Low Temperature Science
    • High-Voltage Electron Microscope Laboratory
  • Information Synergy Organization
    • Information Synergy Center (National Collaboration Institution)

Collaborating Institutions (8)

  • Office of Cooperative Research and Development
  • Office for Strategic Promotion of Basic Research
  • Center for Research Strategy and Support(CRESS)
  • Environment Conservation Research Institute
  • Center for International Exchange
  • Archaeological Research office on the Campus
  • Global Operations center
  • Campus Planning office

Administration Unit

Tohoku University Overseas Office

Tohoku University US Office
Tohoku University China Office

Biomedical Engineering Research Organization

e-learning system

  • Internet School of Tohoku University (ISTU)


  • Ibun-ryo (以文寮 Ibun ryō)
  • Josyun-ryo (如春寮 Josyun ryō)
  • Seifu-ryo (霽風寮 Seifū ryō)
  • Nissyu-ryo (日就寮 Nissyū ryō)
  • Meizen-ryo (明善寮 Meizen ryō)
  • Matsukaze-ryo (松風寮 Matsukaze ryō)
  • University House Sanjo (ユニバーシティ・ハウス三条 University House Sanjo)
  • International House (国際交流会館 Kokusai kōryū kaikan)

The 21st Century Center Of Excellence Programs

Fiscal Year Field Program Title
2002 Life Sciences Future Medical Engineering based on Bio-nanotechnology
Chemistry, material sciences International Center of Research & Education for Unexplored Chemistry
International Center of Research & Education for Materials
Information sciences, electrical and electronic engineering System Construction of Global-Network Oriented Information Electronics
Humanities A Strategic and Education Center for an Integrated Approach to Language and Cognition
2003 Medical sciences Center for Innovative Therapeutic Development for Common Diseases
Mathematics, physics, earth sciences Exploring New Science by Bridging Particle-Matter Hierarchy
Advanced Science and Technology Center for the Dynamic Earth
Mechanical, civil, architectural and other fields of engineering The Exploration of the Frontiers of Mechanical Science Based on Nanotechnology
International COE of Flow Dynamics
Social sciences Center for the Study of Social Stratification and Inequality
Gender Law and Policy Center
2004 New scientific fields Comprehensive Research and Education Center for Planning of Drug Development and Clinical Evaluation

Rankings and reputation

University rankings
Toyo Keizai National[14]General 7
Kawaijuku National[15]General 5
T. Reuters National[16]Research 4
WE National[17]Employment 21
Shimano National[18]Selectivity SA
QS Asia
(Asian Ranking version)[19]
General 9
ARWU Asia[20]Research 8
THE World[21]General 132
QS World[22]General 77
ARWU World[20]Research 101-150
ENSMP World[2]Alumni 13
Program rankings
Social Sciences & Humanities


Asahi National[23]Research 8
BE Success National[24]Qualification 10
BE Pass rate National[25]Qualification 9


Eduni MBA National[26]General 15
Eduni MBA World[27]General 536
Natural Sciences & Technology


Kawaijuku National[28]General 5
QS World[29]General 56


T.Reuters National[30]Research 1
T.Reuters World[30]Research 3


T.Reuters National[30]Research 2
T.Reuters World[30]Research 10


T.Reuters National[30]Research 4
T.Reuters World[30]Research 20


T.Reuters National[30]Research 7
T.Reuters World[30]Research 113


ARE Success National[31]Qualification 17
Life Sciences


T.Reuters National[30]Research 6
T.Reuters World[30]Research 142


T.Reuters National[30]Research 3
T.Reuters World[30]Research 64
* T. Reuters World rankings include non-educational institutions

Tohoku University is one of the most prestigious universities in Japan. It can be seen in the several rankings such as shown below.

General rankings

The university has been ranked 6th in 2009 and 7th in 2010 in the ranking "Truly Strong Universities" by Toyo Keizai.[14] In another ranking, Japanese prep school Kawaijuku ranked Tohoku as the 5th best university in Japan.[15]

According to 2011 QS World University Rankings[32] the university rose to 70th having dropped out of the top 100 in 2010 to 102nd, and having been 97th in the 2009 THE-QS World University Rankings (in 2010 Times Higher Education World University Rankings and QS World University Rankings parted ways to produce separate rankings).

It was also ranked 49th worldwide according to the Global University Ranking in 2009.[33]

Research performance

Tohoku is one of the top research institutions in Japan. According to Thomson Reuters, Tohoku is the 4th best research university in Japan.[16] Its research excellence is especially distinctive in Materials Science (1st in Japan, 3rd in the world), Physics (2nd in Japan, 10th in the world), Pharmacology & Toxicology (3rd in Japan, 64th in the world) and Chemistry (6th in Japan, 20th in the world).[34]

Weekly Diamond also reported that Tohoku has the 11th highest research standard in Japan in terms of research funding per researchers in COE Program.[35] In the same article, it's also ranked 9th in terms of the quality of education by GP funds per student.

In addition, Nikkei Shimbun on 2004/2/16 surveyed about the research standards in Engineering studies based on Thomson Reuters, Grants in Aid for Scientific Research and questionnaires to heads of 93 leading Japanese Research Centers, and Tohoku was placed 3rd (research planning ability 9th//informative ability of research outcome 2nd/ability of business-academia collaboration 2nd) in this ranking.[36]

According to the Qs World university rankings on 2012/9 surveyed about the general standards in Engineering&Technology field, Tohoku university was placed 56th (world), 5th(national).[37]

As Tohoku University has been emphasizing 'practical' research, Tohoku received the top place for its number of patents accepted (324) during 2009 among Japanese Universities.[38]

Graduate school rankings

Tohoku Law School is one of the most famous Law schools in Japan, as it was ranked 9th in the passing rate of Japanese Bar Examination in 2010.[39]

Eduniversal ranked Tohoku Business school as 6th in the rankings of "Excellent Business Schools nationally strong and/or with continental links " in Japan.[40]

Alumni rankings

According to the Weekly Economist's 2010 rankings, graduates from Tohoku have the 21st best employment rate in 400 major companies in Japan.[41]

Mines ParisTech : Professional Ranking World Universities ranks Tohoku University as 13th in the world in 2011 in terms of the number of alumni listed among CEOs in the 500 largest worldwide companies.[2]

Popularity and selectivity

Tohoku is one of the most selective universities in Japan. Its entrance difficulty is usually considered as one of the top in Japan.[42][43]


Successive presidents

Akihisa Inoue James Zumwalt and Ann Kambara 2009
Akihisa Inoue (left) talked with James P. Zumwalt (chargé d'affaires) and Ann Kambara at Tohoku University in 2009.
  • 0th Shosuke Sato(佐藤 昌介)
  • 1st Masataro Sawayanagi (澤柳 政太郎)
  • 2nd Tokiyuki Hojo (北条 時敬)
  • 3rd Ryojiro Hukuhara (福原 鐐二郎)
  • 4th Masataka Ogawa (小川 正孝)
  • 5th Nikichi Inoue (井上 仁吉)
  • 6th Kotaro Honda (本多 光太郎)
  • 7th Taizo Kumagai (熊谷 岱蔵)
  • 8th Yasutaro Satake (佐武 安太郎)
  • 9th Satomi Takahashi (高橋 里美)
  • 10th Toshio Kurokawa (黒川 利雄)
  • 11th Teruji Ishizu (石津 照璽)
  • 12th Koichi Motokawa (本川 弘一)
  • 13th Mutsuo Kato (加藤 陸奥雄)
  • 14th Shiro Maeda (前田 四郎)
  • 15th Nakao Ishida (石田 名香雄)
  • 16th Shigemori Ohtani (大谷 茂盛)
  • 17th Jun-ichi Nishizawa (西澤 潤一)
  • 18th Hiroyuki Abe (阿部 博之)
  • 19th Takashi Yoshimoto (吉本 高志)
  • 20th Akihisa Inoue (井上 明久)
  • 21st Susumu Satomi (里見進)
  • 22nd Hideo Ohno (大野 英男)

Notable people associated with Tohoku University

See also


  1. ^ "30 Top Japanese Universities". Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "ENSMP World University Rankings" (PDF). École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris. 2011. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  3. ^ Tohoku University Annual Review Tohoku University's official website accessed June 2018
  4. ^ on castle grounds,, Retrieved 17 August 2016
  5. ^ a b "History of Tohoku University Campus". Tohoku University. Retrieved 7 April 2012.
  6. ^ "Important notices from Tohoku University (11:00 AM, March 14th, 2011)".
  7. ^ Organizations with ties to CCEP CCEP, accessed 2011-03-19
  8. ^ Research Institute of Electrical Communication On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  9. ^ Institute of Development Aging and Cancer On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  10. ^ Institute of Fluid Science On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  11. ^ Institute for Material Research Archived 2007-08-17 at the Wayback Machine On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  12. ^ Institute of Multidisciplinary Research for Advanced Materials On Tohoku University's official website accessed at December 15, 2008
  13. ^ "IRIDeS - International Research Institute of Disaster Science". Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  14. ^ a b "Truly Strong Universities" (in Japanese). Toyo Keizai. 2010. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  15. ^ a b "Kawai 30 Top Japanese Universities". Kawaijuku. 2001. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  16. ^ a b "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan". Thomson Reuters. 2011. Retrieved April 29, 2011. (this raking includes 5 non-educational institutions)
  17. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  18. ^ "GBUDU University Rankings" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2009. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  19. ^ "QS Asian University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2016. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  20. ^ a b "Academic Ranking of World Universities". Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. 2017. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  21. ^ "THE World University Rankings". Times Higher Education. 2018. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  22. ^ "QS World University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2018. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  23. ^ Asahi Shimbun University rankings 2010 "Publification rankings in Law (Page 4)" (PDF) (in Japanese). Asahi Shimbun. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  24. ^ "Bar Exam Successful Applicants rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  25. ^ "Bar Exam Pass rate rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  26. ^ "Business School Ranking in Japan". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  27. ^ "University and business school ranking in 5 palms (Top100)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 4 palms (Top101-300)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 3 palms (Top301-696)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 2 palms (Top697-896)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  28. ^ "Kawaijuku japanese universities rankings in Engineering field" (in Japanese). Kawaijuku. 2012. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
  29. ^ "QS topuniversities world rankings in Engineering field". Topuniversities. 2012. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
  30. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Thomson Reuters 10 Top research institutions by subject in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  31. ^ "Architects Registration Exam Successful Applicants rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  32. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2011/12". Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 7 April 2012.
  33. ^
  34. ^ "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. Archived from the original on 2011-06-13. (this raking includes non-educational institutions)
  35. ^ "週刊ダイヤモンド" ダイヤモンド社 2010/2/27
  36. ^ "wHw͒i04.2.22j". Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  37. ^ "QS world university ranking(2012)". Retrieved September 18, 2012.
  38. ^ (in Japanese)2009年国内大学別特許公開件数, Japanese patent office, accessed May 3rd 2011
  39. ^ "2010年(平成22年)新司法試験法科大学院別合格率ランキング -法科大学院seek-". Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  40. ^ "University and business school ranking in Japan". Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  41. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved Apr 29, 2011.
  42. ^ e.g. Yoyogi seminar published Hensachi (the indication showing the entrance difficulties by prep schools) rankings "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-04-22. Retrieved 2016-07-29.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  43. ^ Japanese journalist Kiyoshi Shimano ranks its entrance difficulty as SA (most selective/out of 11 scales) in Japan. 危ない大学・消える大学 2012年版 (in Japanese). YELL books. 2011.
  44. ^ CNN rebroadcasting NHK, 13 March 2011
  45. ^ "草原名人:开创蒙古语言研究黄金时期的清格尔泰 (zh) Cǎoyuán míngrén: Kāichuàng ménggǔ yǔyán yánjiū huángjīn shíqí de qīng gé ěr tài [Famous man of the steppe: Chinggaltai, who pioneered the golden age of Mongolian language research]". People's Daily. 2007-07-19. Retrieved 2010-06-02.
  46. ^ Garcia, Alejandro V.; Cowles, Robert A.; Kato, Tomoaki; Hardy, Mark A. (2012-05-01). "Morio Kasai: a remarkable impact beyond the Kasai procedure". Journal of Pediatric Surgery. 47 (5): 1023–1027. doi:10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2012.01.065. ISSN 1531-5037. PMC 3356564. PMID 22595595.

External links

Coordinates: 38°15′15″N 140°52′25″E / 38.25417°N 140.87361°E

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Toru Takahashi (Internet)

Toru Takahashi (Japanese: 高橋徹 Takahashi Tōru; born January 1941) is a Japanese computer network researcher and businessman. He is credited with contributing to the spread of the Internet into Japan and the rest of Asia in the 1990s and was a pivotal figure in the early commercial development of the Internet. For this reason, he is often called the "Mother of the Internet" in Japan.

Takahashi was born in Utsunomiya, Tochigi Prefecture in 1941. After graduating from the Faculty of Arts at Tohoku University in 1964, he worked as a contributing editor and writer. Since 1982, he has been involved in marketing of Videotex. Since 1986, he has worked on a high-speed LAN construction project using UNIX workstations and routers. Since 1987, he began researching the Internet and assumed office as a member of the Japan Unix Users Association. In 1993, he became secretary general at the time of establishing the Japan Internet Association and became its chairman in 1997. In 1994, he established the Tokyo Internet ISP and became its president. In 2001, when the Japan Internet Association merged with the Electronic Network Council and became the Foundation Internet Association, he became the deputy chief of Foundation Internet Association, and in 2002 became the chairperson of the Asia Pacific Internet Association, and later became a director.In 2002, Takahashi received the Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications Minister's Award for Information and Communication. In 2012, he was chosen as the only Japanese person among the 33 members of the Internet Society's Internet Hall of Fame in the Global Connectors category for his contributions in spreading the Internet into Japan and the rest of Asia.

Toshikazu Sunada

Toshikazu Sunada (砂田 利一, Sunada Toshikazu, born September 7, 1948) is a Japanese mathematician and author of many books and essays on mathematics and mathematical sciences. He is professor of mathematics at Meiji University, Tokyo, and is also professor emeritus of Tohoku University, Tohoku, Japan. Before he joined Meiji University in 2003, he was professor of mathematics at Nagoya University (1988–1991), at the University of Tokyo (1991–1993), and at Tohoku University (1993–2003). Sunada was involved in the creation of the School of Interdisciplinary Mathematical Sciences at Meiji University and is its first dean (2013–2017).

Yukio Edano

Yukio Edano (枝野 幸男, Edano Yukio, born 31 May 1964) is a Japanese politician and a member of the House of Representatives in the Diet. He served as Chief Cabinet Secretary and Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry in the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) cabinet between 2010 and 2012. He has served as the head of the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan since its formation in October 2017.

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