Kyoto University was founded in 1897 in Kyoto, a city with a cultural heritage of over 1300 years. It started with a characteristic emphasis on research rather than educating future government officials. At present, Kyoto University has 17 graduate schools, 10 faculties, 13 research institutes and 26 other academic facilities. There are approximately 9,300 graduate and 13,300 undergraduate students enrolled in the university, and approximately 2,900 faculty members (as of October 2007).
Kyoto University’s academic tradition is one of self-reliant learning, emphasizing academic freedom and dialogue. The university has produced five Nobel Prize laureates in fundamental natural science fields, and the results of our cutting-edge research in applied science and technology are regularly published in influential international journals. In the humanities and social sciences, Kyoto University has been creating distinctive international centers for research that reflect the philosophic tradition of the “Kyoto School of Thought,” distinguished by increasing interaction between different disciplines, including classical studies. Continuing Kyoto University’s tradition of pioneering fieldwork, we are actively engaged in area studies centering on Southeast Asia and Africa, and the work of our Primate Research Institute is highly acclaimed. The significance of such activities is reflected in the fact that Kyoto University has been selected by the Japanese government for twenty-three 21st Century Centers of Excellence (COE) programs, six Global COE programs and one World Premier International Research Center Initiative (WPI) program.
Our Mission Statement declares the intention to pursue harmonious coexistence within human and ecological community on this planet. We aim to offer students and researchers from around the world the opportunity not only to exceed the goal of becoming a specialist in their chosen field, but also to endeavor to address the issues raised by our Mission Statement.