GreetingsMessage from the Director

Atsufumi Yokoi Senior Vice President for Global Engagement Strategy

Chairholder, UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) Chair in Research and Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

Earth Charter International (ECI), ECI Council member (United Nations-mandated University for Peace : UPEACE)
In April 2020, the Okayama University Office of Global Engagement (OUGEO) was established in a bid to commit to the Okayama University global engagement strategy and to support seamless interaction and coordination of the activities of the Vice President for Global Engagement Strategy; Okayama University as the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization chair institution in Asia's first "Research and Education for Sustainable Development"; and the Institute of Global Human Resource Development. OUGEO is positioned as a core organization for global engagement of SDG University Management, which is Okayama University's framework for university-wide efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

OUGEO will push forward with its global engagement strategy, which applies and expands the resources of the university’s education and research as well as those of the local community to global-scale issues in order to mutually collaborate with various stakeholders, including international organizations, for the realization of human welfare and planetary health. This strategy aims to make valuable assets of the strengths and characteristics of the university and local community and to drive the university as a global gateway to the region through direct collaboration with like-minded international organizations.

OUGEO, as part of a leading world class university, will act as an engine that links SDG University Management with global engagement strategies to promote education, research, and social engagement services that contribute toward the realization of a decarbonized society, a circular economy, and a decentralized society through partnership projects.


Okayama University’s Global Engagement

Okayama University uses the name "SDG University Management" to describe university management that tackles both regional and global issues in an integrated way and expresses the university’s mission for contribution to the SDGs as the core of university management.

The Okayama University Global Engagement Office (OUGEO) will promote engagement between SDG University Management and multiple stakeholders in Japan and overseas to provide new values to society.

Diagram of SDG University Management with global engagement strategies

As a university for the promotion of the SDGs, we will contribute to stabilizing our management base and enhancing our international presence by strengthening our research capabilities.

Engage in research and analysis, conduct interactions with mainly with foreign institutions, and coordinate with the university.

Strengthen direct cooperation with various international organizations, e.g., UESCO, UNU, UNCTAD, UPEACE, and UNFPA.

Match Okayama University's research and education resources to priority issues in the international community.

Search for and communicate with overseas universities suitable for global alliances and strengthen inter-university networks.

Image Illustration

The concept of this design is derived from nature—
that is, the relationship between the Sun and the Earth. Light from the activities of OUGEO energizes the water and earth. This energy produces growth like a plant that blooms by producing many buds.

Specific examples of initiatives

Teacher education

Graduate School of Teacher Education.
UNESCO・ESD for 2030.

ESD for 2030 was adopted at the United Nations General Assembly in September 2019. ESD is the foundation for achieving the SDGs and is currently making rapid progress around the world. As Asia's first UNESCO chair on ESD education, Okayama University is promoting its efforts as a global hub for ESD education to achieve the SDGs through alliances with international organizations, including holding the ESD Teacher Education World Congress in July 2019 and concluding the MoU (Comprehensive Partnership Agreement) with the Earth Charter Headquarters in June 2020.

Marine Science

The Ushimado coastal laboratory attached to the Faculty of Science.
International joint research contributing to the United Nations Decade of Sustainable Marine Science.

As a world powerhouse hub in the marine science field, Okayama University is conducting strong collaboration with the University of Hawaii and the University of Kiel, Germany, at the Coastal Laboratory attached to the Faculty of Science (Ushimado). In order to contribute to the United Nations Decade of Sustainable Marine Science adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2017, we will aim to become a global base by further strengthening our efforts the field of marine science and promoting international joint research.

Environmental education

Graduate School of Environmental Life Sciences.

In January 2020, Okayama University signed the world's first MoU as a university to develop human resources for science, technology and innovation to achieve the SDGs (STI for SDGs) with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), one of the UN’s core organizations. In cooperation with UNCTAD, we will disseminate the results of the STI for SDGs human resource development program from Okayama University to the world.

Global Engagement Map


SDGs at Okayama University

On February 28, 2018, Okayama University established the Okayama University SDGs Promotion Headquarters with the aim of promoting university management from the perspective of achieving the SDGs and promoting initiatives to build more integrated partnerships with the local community and the international community. As a long-term vision for 2030, the target year of the SDGs, Okayama University announced, “As a research university that pursues sustainability and wellbeing, we will create new value for the world and region through human resource development and social innovation and realize the creation of the International Academic Center of Okayama which is rich in sustainability and inclusion, through collaboration with diverse stakeholders."

Okayama University and SDGs

University Impact Rankings

Okayama University ranks within top 101-200 universities in the world and is named one of
the top universities in Japan in Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2021

Impact Rankings 2021 | Times Higher Education (THE)

On April 21st, British magazine Times Higher Education (THE), which reports on news and issues related to higher education, announced the results for THE Impact Rankings 2021. Okayama University ranks within top 101-200 universities in the world and is named one of the top universities in Japan. Okayama University evaluated from 5 goals*.

Additionally, each score ranked among the top 200 universities globally. In recognition of our efforts to provide medical and welfare services to the public in collaboration with local community, SDG3 ranked especially high, coming in at 90 globally.

Compared with 2020, the total number of universities included in the ranking increased significantly, from 768 to 1,115 (domestically, the number of universities increased from 63 to 73). Despite this, Okayama University improved its ranking from last year (201-300), reflecting the positive impact of our SDGs university management action plan. As a SDGs promotion research university, we pledge to continue advancing SDGs initiatives through “co-education and co-creation”.

Five Sustainable Development Goals*

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