What is the Kanazawa University Graduate School of Human and Socio-Environmental Studies?

Responding to a Wide Range of Issues Facing Humanity and Human Society

The New Organization – Kanazawa University Graduate School of Human and Socio-Environmental Studies

Kagami Haruya Dean

Kagami Haruya Dean

It is the 21st century and humanity finds itself facing an age of turbulence. As symbolized by global warming, we need to be increasingly conscious of the finiteness of the Earth, within Spaceship Earth, and should give due consideration to the natural environment. The social environment that we have created is becoming increasingly problematic. Solutions to a range of various issues related to economy, politics, laws and institutions, wars, famine and poverty, inequality and discrimination, personal nature, family, community, municipality, and nation required for different crises looming at a global level.

In April 2006, the Kanazawa University Graduate School of Human and Socio-Environmental Studies was inaugurated as a graduate school with a dual program system: the Master’s Level Section and the Doctoral Level Section.
The three Master’s programs formerly offered by School of Humanities, School of Law, and School of Economics were combined into a single Master’s program, and the university integrated it into the current Doctoral program of socio-environment studies to form a new department.

This is because we believe that for gearing up to tackle the range of issues faced by humanity and in daily human business, an in-depth expertise in the humanities and social sciences is of paramount importance. It is also important to have an interdisciplinary approach, which is both broad based and academic, in collaboration with the natural sciences.

The master’s level section of an integrated course is now composed of five divisions.

Starting April 2012, the master’s level section of an integrated course established five new divisions after abolishing the present three divisions. First, the disciplinary education of the School of Humanities, School of Law and School of Economics, which were established in line with the traditional academic disciplines, were passed down to the bachelor program to establish new divisions, including the Division of Humanities, Division of Law and Politics and Division of Economics, with the aim to train advanced specialists.

In addition, aiming to provide interdisciplinary education focusing primarily on corresponding with today’s complex problems, two divisions, including the Division of Regional Development Studies and the Division of International Studies, have been newly established by increasing the expertise of the School of Regional Development Studies and the School of International Studies in the bachelor’s program. The School of Regional Development Studies aims to cultivate problem-solving skills on various problems involved in those living in the communities and social environment, while the Division of International Studies, the International Relations and Area Study Course in particular, aims to cultivate the abilities to address problems faced by the international community using foreign language proficiency as the base. To this end, the curricula of these courses have been organized to make full use of expertise and interdisciplinary intelligence.

After successful completion of these courses, students are granted a master’s degree in literature, law, political science, economics, business administration, regional development studies, international studies and the arts. In addition, there is also a one-year, short-term attendance program leading to a master’s degree while working full-time hours.

Specialist and Interdisciplinary Research – Doctoral Level Section

The goal of the Doctoral Level Section is the development of highly specialized professionals, who have the research skills requisite to work as university lecturers and researchers at private think tanks as well as in businesses and local governments.

In order to achieve this, the Doctoral Level Section has one division and four courses encompassing eight education and research fields.In this program, we cultivate cutting edge research skills in keeping with the fundamental specialist insight relating to the human and socio-environment developed while attempting the Master’s Level Section.

In addition to the students progressing from the Master’s Level Section, we also welcome other members of the society, overseas students, people with different talents and interests, researchers, civil servants, company employees, active university lecturers, and the elderly. Thus, we can confidently state that this institute caters to lifelong learning. Doctoral degrees are available in socio-environment studies, humanities, law, economics, management, public policy, and science. This will lead to many graduates taking up research and teaching work at universities, although there are many who also go on to work in the public and private sectors. For your information, some of the principal themes of the recent doctoral theses are provided in a list of doctoral degree theses for the doctoral level section of an integrated course.

The Graduate School of Human and Socio-Environmental Studies is an innovative organization that aims at creating a new era of problem solving. We strive to provide an educational and research environment in which everyone’s aspirations and dreams can come true.

We hope that you will join us in the ambitious undertaking of making full use of this organization, creating a new academic discipline, and taking on the challenge of solving problems. We look forward to your participation in making this a reality.