Creating a sustainable future together

Hokkaido University will celebrate the 150th anniversary of its establishment in 2026.In preparation for the 150th anniversary of its founding, Hokkaido University has set forth a strategy for the near future titled “Contributing Towards the Resolution of Global Issues.”Although it is a grand mission, the realization of this mission begins with solving our own immediate problems, and our small daily efforts will lead to solving the world’s problems.The “Think Globally, Act Locally” code of conduct has been advocated as an approach to achieving the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals).This, needless to say, conveys the importance of facing the challenges in front of us one by one on a daily basis while thinking about the world.

In doing so, we need to have our own ideas and respect diversity.In today’s world, diversity is emphasized, but achieving it is not an easy task.We need to overcome and turn this into a strength while experiencing the rigors and tensions of diversity. To achieve this, it is necessary not only to interact with people from various cultures and backgrounds but also with a variety of academic fieldsand to exchange opinions with people who have different ideas.This is the priority for a university that is expected to be a base of knowledge for promoting social change and innovation.

Dr. William Smith Clark, the first vice principal of Sapporo Agricultural College (the predecessor of our university), was assigned to the school in 1876. I imagine that he must have encountered many difficulties in this small foreign land in the Far East. In spite of this, Dr. Clark planted the seeds of “Global Perspectives,” which is one of the philosophies of our university.

Dr. Inazo Nitobe, a second-generation student of Sapporo Agricultural College, was active on the international stage as the first Under-Secretary General of the League of Nations. Kanzo Uchimura and Takeo Arishima, also our graduates, had a significant impact on Japanese society through their social movements and literary activities. They passed on to us the spirit of being close to the socially vulnerable and the marginalized.

We are now at a major turning point in history, where we need to think about how to create a new sustainable society, including such matters as respecting diversity, achieving carbon neutrality, and creating a post-COVID-19 society.

Inheriting the wisdom of our predecessors, and in the spirit of the “lofty ambition” advocated by Dr. Clark, Hokkaido University will be creating a sustainable future together with you.