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By on July 17, 2015


Name of university

Shoin University

9-1 Morinosatowakamiya, Atsugi, Kanagawa, Japan 243-0124

+81 (0)46-247-1511

Official Focal Point
Hiroaki Matsuura

Alternate Focal Point
Ichiro Tanaka

Signee, Expression of Interest
Hiroaki Matsuura, Provost and Vice President




Shoin University was established with the motto of the integration of knowledge and action, with the aim of working toward the betterment of society. The university recently declared its commitment to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and actively participated in the post 2015-development agenda process. Shoin University is a member of the UNAI (United Nations Academic Impact) and an affiliate member of the UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organisation). In addition, the university has a partnership agreement with JICA Yokohama and, since 2004, has jointly offered courses that combine the theory and practice of global development.

The university consists of nine departments (Finance and Economics, Business and Law, Business Management, Japanese Culture and Communication, Intercultural Communication, Applied Psychology, Tourism and Cultural Studies, Media and Information Studies, and Nursing), a graduate school and five interdisciplinary research centres. In the last 15 years, the university has worked closely with the City of Atsugi and Kanagawa Prefecture. Some examples of ventures are as follows: the Department of Finance and Economics is working on a project on SME finance and local economic development in the city of Atsugi; the Department of Intercultural Communication is working on diverse and inclusive community development, also in Atsugi; the Department of Tourism and Cultural Studies is working on sustainable urban tourism; and the Department of Nursing is working on community health in the region.

Moreover, Shoin’s faculties are engaged with teaching, research and consulting activities in the field of global development at all levels. It is hard to summarise all national and international activities since many of our faculties work for the Japanese government, local governments, international organisations and civil society. For example, Hiroaki Matsuura worked as a consultant for UNDP, UNFPA and UNU-WIDER, and also participated in the disaster risk reduction study group in the Cabinet Office’s Economic and Social Research Institute. Some of our faculty members have attained distinct achievements both nationally and internationally, namely Mr. Hiroyuki Yoshiie (a current member of the House of Representatives and Mr. Hiroyoshi Ihara (ex-Ambassador of Ethiopia).

Suggested Collaboration Opportunities

We are particularly interested in the collaborations with the UN Habitat and the Habitat University Network in the following two areas.

1. Developing Implementation Strategies for Sustainable Urban Tourism – Target 8.9 of SDGs

The Open Working Group (OWG), which was established by the United Nations General Assembly, released proposals for its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This included Target 8.9 – “By 2030 devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism, which creates jobs, and promotes local culture and products” – as well as Target 12.b. The UNWTO defines sustainable tourism as: “Tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, by addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities.” Shoin University’s Department of Tourism and Culture, along with other university departments, has been working on a wide variety of projects in line with the concept of “sustainable tourism” in Japan and beyond. We are particularly interested in collaborating with your network in the following two areas. First is the measurement of environmental, economic and socio-cultural impacts of urban tourism development. Second is the design and implementation of urban tourism policy in order to achieve a suitable balance between each company’s profits and the wider economic, social and environmental goals of the city. We are particularly interested in applying our expertise to cities in the Asia and Pacific Region.

2. Measuring and Promoting Inclusive, Safe, Resilient and Sustainable Cities – Goal 11 of SDGs.

The Zero Draft of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) includes Goal 11 – “Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”. The adoption of SDGs will require a huge burden of collecting, organising, storing and analysing data in this area. Shoin University helps to compute indicators in order to measure progress toward SDGs at local, regional and national levels. The university is also interested in the further disaggregation of this data on the basis of sex, age, ethnic background, race, geographic location, income and disability, among other variables, with the aim of monitoring and accelerating the progress of SDGs.

Moreover, we aim to contribute to the promotion of inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities across the world. In terms of safety, our hometown, the city of Atsugi, was designated an “International Safe Community” by the World Health Organization in 2010. The university and its departments are currently contributing to the further improvement of community safety measures in Atsugi and are interested in sharing our experience with the rest of the world. For example, the Department of Nursing is contributing to the promotion of mental and physical health especially among the elderly community in the area, while Takayuki Fujimaki (Department of Applied Psychology) and its student group, Lynx, are participating in a Safety Patrol program and promoting traffic safety and crime prevention in Atsugi and its surrounding areas.

In inclusivity, the Department of Intercultural Communication has been long committed to the establishment of a more inclusive environment for foreigners in the Atsugi area; in sustainability, Hiroshi Takiguchi (a policy researcher and a former chair of Atsugi’s Environmental Council), Shigeyuki Ito (a political scientist, economist and a former director of Club of Rome Japan), Haruo Ishibasi (an economist) and Osamu Kawaguchi (an accounting researcher) are working on the issue of the city’s environmental accounting; in resilience, Hiroaki Matsuura is currently working on a project to create Japan’s version of the Resilience Capacity Index with the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) of the Cabinet Office. We believe that our expertise and experience in the field of safe, resilient and sustainable cities can help to create more inclusive, safer, more resilient and more sustainable cities in Asia and beyond.

Areas of Expertise related to UN-Habitat
  • Social Inclusion
  • Safety
  • Resilience
  • Legislation
  • Evaluation
  • Environment
  • Economy


Related UNI Thematic Hubs

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