06 October 2020

Linköping University is one of several Swedish institutions of higher education that have close research collaboration with Japanese institutions within the framework of the MIRAI project. LiU researchers are involved in collaboration in areas such as new energy technology and materials, the sustainable use of wetlands, and aging.


The project is now entering its second phase with no less than eleven Swedish and eight Japanese institutions of higher education involved. MIRAI 2.0 will be coordinated by the University of Gothenburg and Nagoya University in Japan.


“Mirai” is Japanese for “future”. The aim of the project is to strengthen ties between Sweden and Japan in education, research and innovation. The main focus is on researchers at an early stage of their career, including doctoral students, while the fields studied include sustainability, materials science, aging, and innovation and entrepreneurship.


The first phase of the project ran from 2017 until 2019, and resulted in several joint applications for research funding, and several successful collaborations.


“We are highly satisfied with the results so far. We have established productive collaboration in all fields. The project focusses on major societal challenges, where it is important to work with a global perspective. Here, Japan is a very exciting and valuable collaboration partner”, says Peter Värbrand, deputy vice-chancellor for collaboration at Linköping University.


Photo credit Thor BalkhedOne of the projects that lies within the framework for the MIRAI collaboration is work by LiU researcher Gábor Méhes (picture) in the Laboratory of Organic Electronics, who will collaborate with researchers at Kyushu University in an attempt to create eco-friendly and cheap energy by combining electroactive bacteria with nanoparticles. Professor Björn-Ola Linnér, who works in climate research, is collaborating with researchers at Sophia University in Japan in a project centred on the restoration and use of wetlands, which can capture nitrogen and phosphorus, reducing in this way eutrophication of the seas.


These two examples will be highlighted when MIRAI 2.0 holds its kick-off event on 7-8 October.


Three senior LiU researchers have been nominated to take responsibility for and determine the direction of the academic topics in MIRAI 2.0. These are Professor Jens Birch, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, within materials science; Professor Andreas Motel Klingebiel, Department of Culture and Society, within aging; and Professor Björn-Ola Linnér (Department of Thematic Studies) within sustainability. All three have been active in MIRAI since 2017.


More information about MIRAI 2.0 and the kick-off in October is available at www.mirai.nu.


Contact: Helena Balogh, project manager LiU-MIRAI 2.0, +4613-28 68 48,helena.balogh@liu.se


Translated by George Farrants


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