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Kyoto Imperial University

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Kyoto Imperial University

Kyoto University
File:Kyoto University seal.png
Motto 自由の学風
Established Founded May 1, 1869,
Chartered Jun. 18, 1897
Type Public (National)
Endowment ¥ 250.2 billion (2.2 billion USD)
President Hiroshi Matsumoto
Academic staff 2,864 (Teaching Staff)[1]
Admin. staff 5,397 (Total Staff)[1]
Students 22,707[1]
Undergraduates 13,399[2]
Postgraduates 9,308[3]
Location Kyoto, Kyoto, Japan
Campus Urban,
333 acres (1.3 km²)
Athletics 48 varsity teams
Colors Dark blue     
Nickname Kyodai
Mascot None
Affiliations Kansai Big Six, ASAIHL

Kyoto University (京都大学 Kyōto daigaku?), or Kyodai (京大 Kyōdai?) is a national university located in Kyoto, Japan. It is the second oldest Japanese university,[4] one of the highest ranked universities in Asia and one of Japan's National Seven Universities. One of Asia’s leading research-oriented institutions, Kyoto University is famed for producing world-class researchers, including eight Nobel Prize laureates, two Fields medalists and one Gauss Prize. The university has been consistently ranked the second best institute in Japan since 2008 in various independent university ranking schemes.


The forerunner of the Kyoto University was the Chemistry School (舎密局 Seimi-kyoku?) founded in Osaka in 1869, which, despite its name, taught physics as well. (舎密 is a transcription of a Dutch word chemie.) Later, the Third Higher School (第三髙等學校 Daisan-kōtō-gakkō?) was established in the place of Seimi-kyoku in 1886, it then transferred to the university's present main campus in the same year.

Kyoto Imperial University (京都帝國大學 Kyōto-teikoku-daigaku?) as a part of the Imperial University system was established on June 18, 1897,[4] using the Third Higher School's buildings. The higher school moved to a patch of land just across the street, where the Yoshida South Campus stands today. In the same year of the university's establishment, the College of Science and Technology was founded. The College of Law and the College of Medicine were founded in 1899, the College of Letters in 1906, expanding the university's activities to areas outside natural science.

After World War II, the current Kyoto University was established by merging the imperial university and the Third Higher School, which assumed the duty of teaching liberal arts as the Faculty of Liberal Arts (教養部 Kyōyō-bu?). The faculty was dissolved with the foundation of the Faculty of Integrated Human Studies (総合人間学部 Sōgō-ningen-gakubu?) in 1992.

Kyoto University has since 2004 been incorporated as a national university corporation under a new law which applies to all national universities.

Despite the incorporation which has led to increased financial independence and autonomy, Kyoto University is still partly controlled by the Japanese Ministry of Education (文部科学省 Monbu-kagaku-shō?).

The University's Department of Geophysics and their Disaster Prevention Research Institute are both represented on the national Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction.[5]


The university has three campuses in Yoshida, Kyoto; in Gokashō, Uji; and in Katsura, Kyoto.

Yoshida Campus is the main campus, with some laboratories located in Uji. The Graduate School of Engineering is currently under process of moving to the newly built Katsura Campus.


The university has about 22,000 students enrolled in its undergraduate and graduate programs.



  • Faculty of Integrated Human Studies
  • Faculty of Letters
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Economics
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Medicine
  • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Agriculture

Graduate schools


  • Graduate School of Letters
  • Graduate School of Education
  • Graduate School of Law
  • Graduate School of Economics
  • Graduate School of Science
  • Graduate School of Medicine
  • Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Graduate School of Engineering
  • Graduate School of Agriculture
  • Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies
  • Graduate School of Energy Science
  • Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies
  • Graduate School of Informatics
  • Graduate School of Biostudies
  • Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies
  • School of Government
  • Graduate School of Management
  • Kyoto University Law School (Japanese Text Only)
  • Kyoto University School of Public Health


Kyoto University promotes itself as an academic institution fostering a "spirit of freedom."[7] The university claims eight Nobel Laureates and two Fields Medalists among its faculty and alumni. The university is also known as the starting point for the Kyoto School philosophical movement.

Notable research institutes and facilities

Academic rankings

The Academic Rankings of World University ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2011 2nd 2nd 27th
2010 2nd 2nd 24th
2009 2nd 2nd 24th
2008 2nd 2nd 23rd

The Times Higher Education ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2011-2012 2nd 5th 52nd
2010-2011 2nd 8th 57th

The URAP ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2011 2nd 2nd 24th

The QS World University Rankings ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2011 2nd 3rd 32nd
2010 2nd 3rd 23rd
2009 2nd 3rd 25th
2008 2nd 3rd 25th

Template:Infobox Japanese university ranking Template:Infobox Japanese university ranking (By Subject)

Kyodai 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 was ranked 3rd in 2008 and 2010 in the ranking "Truly Strong Universities" by Toyo Keizai.[8] In another ranking, Japanese prep school Kawaijuku ranked Kyodai as the 2nd best university in Japan.[9]

Kyodai is also one of the top universities in the world. The following rankings are the example of Kyodai's ranking positions in the world rankings.

  • Kyoto University was ranked 24th in the world in the 2010 Academic Ranking of World Universities
  • 11th worldwide in the Global University Ranking.[2].
  • A human competitiveness index and analysis by the Human Resources & Labor Review, and published in Chasecareer Network, ranked the university 24th internationally and 2nd in Asia for 2010.[11]
  • QS World University Rankings[12] in 2011 placed Kyoto University 32nd overall in the world, one behind University of Melbourne, seven places lower than the previous year.
  • The 2011 QS Asian Rankings make Kyoto University the seventh highest ranked university in Asia, the highest being The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

Research performance

Kyodai is usually considered as one of the top research institution in Japan. In fact, the 2nd largest amount of investment from Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research, which is the national grants program for research institutions.

This financial support from the Japanese government has a direct effect on Kyodai's research outcomes. According to Thomson Reuters, Kyodai is the 1st best research university in Japan.[13] Its research excellence is especially distinctive in Chemistry (1st in Japan, 4th in the world), Biology & Biochemistry (2nd in Japan, 23rd in the world), Pharmacology & Toxicology (2nd in Japan,30 in the world), Immunology (3rd in Japan, 25th in the world), Material Science (4th in Japan, 22nd in the world), and Physics (4th in Japan, 25th in the world).[14]

In another ranking, 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 the heads of 93 leading Japanese Research Centers. Kyodai was placed in the 10th position (research planning ability 6th) in this ranking.[15]

Kyodai also has a high research standard in Social Sciences & Humanities. Repec in January 2011 ranked Kyodai's Institute of Economic Research as Japan's 3rd best economic research institution.[16] Kyodai has provided 6 presidents of the Japanese Economic Association in its 42 year history, which is the 3rd largest number.[17]

Asahi Shimbun summarized the amount of academic papers in Japanese major legal journals by university, and Kyodai was ranked 6th for the period between 2005 and 2009.[18]

Graduate school rankings

Kyodai Law School is considered as one of the top Law schools in Japan, being ranked 4th in terms of the number of successful candidates of Japanese Bar Examination in 2009 and 2010.[19] The cumulative number of people qualified as lawyer and prosecutor has been also historically also 4th after WW2.[20]

Eduniversal ranked Japanese business schools, and the Faculty of Economics in Kyodai is placed 4th in Japan (111th in the world).[21]

Alumni rankings

Kyodai alumni are distinctively successful in Japanese industries such as shown below.

According to the Weekly Economist's 2010 rankings, graduates from Kyodai have the 10th best employment rate in 400 major companies in Japan.[22] However, it has to be noted that this lower ranking position is because of the large number of alumni who become government bureaucrats, which is 2nd largest among Japanese universities.[23] In fact, alumni of Kyodai's average salary is the 5th best in Japan, according to the PRESIDENT.[24]

École des Mines de Paris ranks Kyodai as 5th in the world in 2011 in terms of the number of alumni listed among CEOs in the 500 largest worldwide companies.[25] The university is also ranked 5th in Japan for the number of alumni holding the position of executive in the listed companies of Japan, and this number per student (probability of becoming an executive) is the 4th best.[14][26]

Furthermore, the number of Members of Parliament who graduated Kyodai has been 4th in Japan.[27]

Popularity and selectivity

Kyodai is one of the most selective universities in Japan. Its entrance difficulty is usually considered as one of the top among 180 national and public universities.[28][29][30]


Kyoto University competes in 48 sports. The university is a member of the Kansai Big Six Baseball League.

Notable people

Notable alumni

Graduates of Kyoto University including Nobel laureates, Japanese politicians, philosophers, economists, and scientists.

Notable research

Researchers at the University of Kyoto and Toyohashi University of Technology have conducted research that leads to the conclusion that ten month old babies prefer the Underdog.[31]

See also


External links

  • Kyoto University
  • The 10th US-Japan Symposium on Drug Delivery Systems

Template:Global 30

Coordinates: 35°01′34″N 135°46′51″E / 35.026212°N 135.780842°E / 35.026212; 135.780842

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