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Greetings from Presidents

Hokkaido University

Kiyohiro HOUKIN
Kiyohiro HOUKIN President
Hokkaido University

On behalf of the host university of the 24th Hokkaido University (HU) – Seoul National University (SNU) Joint Symposium, I would like to say welcome back to all the attendees from both universities to this second-time virtual symposium, due to remaining travel restrictions and larger event arrangement concerns caused by some lingering COVID-19 impact.

Considering the history of this academic symposium over two decades, online arrangement for two consecutive years still seems an unusual and rather experimental experience. Although it could not really take over the face-to-face events using the campuses and facilities, following the last year’s first-ever online symposium which welcomed leaderships from our prestigious partner universities, Ghent University and the University of Melbourne, as distinguished guest speakers and also panellists, the 24th symposium will deliver online programmes: a plenary session to share the overviews and case studies of the two universities’ industry-academia collaboration, departmental research sessions, and a one-day staff exchange programme.

Registered satellite research sessions this time are not only ones by familiar faces yet include a newly participating session on forest sciences. HU research forests and SNU academic forests have been where to accept their undergraduate students on forestry and bioresources for annually co-arranged summer-time field workshops. This unique co-workshop framework exchanges ten to twenty undergraduate students, faculties and forest technicians to both sides’ forests for a week and lets junior students learn counterpart’s forest management and different teaching, learning methods on rich and deep forests.
The staff exchange programme is scheduled for the Day 2 of the symposium, and this year’s programme focuses on encouraging communications among technical or facility-stationed staff members of two universities: staff for university libraries and afore-mentioned university forests, and lecturer and managers for faculty/staff development schemes. Technical staff development means much for research-intensive universities and this new layer of networking shall benefit our long-lasting university-wide partnership.

I believe this year’s symposium will show SNU and HU another door to open together and look forward to re-opening awaited face-to-face meetings reflecting this online experience not in a distant future.

Seoul National University

Se-Jung OH
Se-Jung OH President
Seoul National University

On behalf of the Seoul National University (SNU), I would like to thank President Kiyohiro Houkin and his staff for co-hosting the 24th Hokkaido University (HU) -Seoul National University Joint Symposium, and I would like to send my warmest greetings to all our researchers and staff who are participating in this year’s joint symposium.

Since 1998, with joint efforts from two institutions, we have been able to make a stable platform for research collaboration between SNU and HU. Not only that, through annual plenary sessions, we have been discussing the major issues and challenges that universities face, to seek for a better solution for ourselves. Furthermore, using this firm network, we have extended our participants from researchers to our administrative staff, so that we can share our skills in managing the higher education institution and move forward together.

This year, a virtual plenary session will be held with the theme will be “Enhancement of University’s Capacity through Industry-Academia Collaboration.” Seoul National University is celebrating the tenth year since its incorporation in 2021. There have been notable changes from curriculum to financial management, and we are continuously putting effort to make advance. One of the example is the establishment of SNU Holdings. We aim to revitalize university start-ups through SNU holdings, which will lead to a virtuous cycle of research and finance in the long run, and which will develop complementary skills for researchers and participating companies. Through this year’s symposium, we expect to have a valuable opportunity to exchange new ideas and best practices that could improve both universities’ capacity.

In addition, we will continue supporting satellite sessions and staff exchange programs as past years, so that more participants can make engagement through the online platform. Although this may not fully substitute the face-to-face interaction, I believe that all of us have adapted very well to this change derived from the outbreak of COVID-19. Through continuous effort, I am sure that we can still communicate, influence others, make decisions, solve problems, and strengthen our relationships with our members’ willingness to engage.

Once again, I would like to express my respect and gratitude to all participants who have joined this year’s virtual symposium and I am sure that this will serve as assets for everyone in the new era. Thank you.