The MIRAI collaboration enters a new third phase

The MIRAI collaboration project between Swedish and Japanese universities has now entered a new three-year period for 2024-2026.  Increased collaboration across disciplines and sectors will be in focus, to address societal challenges such as climate crises, pandemics, and an ageing population.

During this new phase, the MIRAI collaboration aims to take a new direction with a focus on several of the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to be tackled collaboratively. By this, MIRAI aspires to contribute not only to the Sweden-Japan collaborations but also to global issues that should be discussed and handled across nations on the international scale.

Building on the efforts and work that have been carried out during previous years, the new phase will offer an opportunity to take the work in a new direction. The method will be to form new groupings called “Global Challenges Teams” around the following selected challenges: 

  • Challenge 1: Health and an ageing population (Part of SDG 3) 
  • Challenge 2: Climate adaption, disaster and risk management and prevention (Part of SDG 13) 
  • Challenge 3: Resilient cities and communities – policies, strategies, local government and urban planning (Part of SDG 11) 
  • Challenge 4: Materials for Energy Conversion and Storage: renewable energy, solar energy conversion, electrification, sustainable processes and use of resources (Part of SDG 7) 

Since these challenges are complex, “Global Challenges Teams” will be formed based on diverse subject areas, sectors and approaches to increase the possibilities to be successful and to come up with creative solutions. A strong commitment to the Global Challenges will be integrated into an effort to promote new and innovative ways of working together transdisciplinary, welcoming contributions from experts in all scientific fields, ranging from natural sciences, medicine, life sciences and engineering to social sciences and humanities. 

The following advanced goals have been set for the third phase of MIRAI: 

  • To contribute to solving global challenges by setting up groups where researchers from MIRAI universities work together across and beyond institutions, countries, disciplines and sectors. 
  • To create an environment to promote long-term research collaborations. 
  • To facilitate PhD student and researcher mobility. 
  • To promote innovation and entrepreneurship in education and research and facilitate joint efforts between academia, industry and external partners. 

Kyushu University and Umeå University are the new coordinating institutions for this new three-year period (2024-2026).