Welcome to MIRAI 2.0
From 2020 the MIRAI collaboration has entered a new phase, called MIRAI 2.0. The partnership builds on the MIRAI project “Connecting Swedish and Japanese universities through research, education, and innovation” (2017-2019) and aims to develop the contacts and collaborations even further.

Background
From 2017-2019 seven Swedish and eight Japanese Universities joined together in the MIRAI project and research seminars, workshops, short courses for Ph.D., and Post-Docs and researcher mobility were implemented to strengthen collaboration between Sweden and Japan. Several new contacts have been established, existing contact deepened, and joint research proposals were submitted.

At the MIRAI meetings in Tokyo in October 2018, all present universities expressed a strong interest in continuing their collaboration beyond the period of the present MIRAI project. Furthermore, the partners agreed to expand the number of participating universities by inviting other Swedish and Japanese higher education institutions to join. The importance of the collaborations between Swedish and Japanese institutions was also highlighted in the Joint Statement on ‘Strengthening of Japan-Sweden Science and Technology Cooperation’ signed during the MIRAI seminar in Tokyo, Japan, in October 2018.

MIRAI 2.0 (2020-2022)
The aims and objectives for MIRAI 2.0 are:
• To contribute to long-term research collaborations promoting excellent science between Sweden and Japan through activities such as externally funded joint research proposals and jointly authored papers.
• To promote mobility of researchers at an early stage of their career for them to gain knowledge, contacts, and networks to become future leaders of joint Swedish and Japanese research and education activities
• A deepened understanding of innovation systems and entrepreneurship in Japan and Sweden, and promote innovation and entrepreneurship in education and research
• Strengthened collaboration between Swedish and Japanese universities
• To continue a dialogue between Swedish and Japanese funding agencies and companies for future joint funding opportunities
• To increase the understanding of each other’s culture and societal conditions as the basis for future cooperation activities
• To promote Sweden and Japan as a destination for research and higher education activities and as nations of world-leading large-scale research infrastructure
• To observe and utilise best practice in innovative and translational research involving academia, public authorities, and industry

The focus of the MIRAI 2.0 project will continue to be on early career researchers, the academic topics ‘Ageing’, ‘Materials Science’ and ‘Sustainability’ as well as possible usage of existing large scale facilities. A new aspect will be to integrate an innovation and entrepreneurship perspective in all academic topics. A clear connection of the MIRAI 2.0 project to the Sustainability Development Goals, as well as possibly including additional academic topics, will also be part of MIRAI 2.0. The main activity of MIRAI 2.0 is a research & innovation week held two times during the initial three-year phase, but there will also be new possibilities for early career researchers such as seed-funding to support promising collaborative initiatives. Further initiatives and forms of collaborations will be explored.

From 2020 until 2022, MIRAI 2.0 aims to develop further and expand the collaboration activities started in the MIRAI project in a new context, to meet what the society today expects of research universities.
After three years, the project activities will be evaluated, and the MIRAI 2.0 partners will discuss a possible continuation of the project.