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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 September 28 - October 4  > Professors criticize Hokkaido Univ. for promoting military-academia cooperation
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2016 September 28 - October 4 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Professors criticize Hokkaido Univ. for promoting military-academia cooperation

September 28, 2016
An anti-war group of teaching staff in universities in Hokkaido on September 26 submitted to Hokkaido University a written statement criticizing the university for supporting the Abe government’s move to promote military-academia cooperation.

This year, a research team of Hokkaido University Faculty of Engineering became a successful applicant for the Defense Ministry’s subsidy program to promote research and development of security technologies. This is the first time the grant was provided to a research team among the seven oldest national universities in Japan.

Regarding this fact, the written statement states that authorities of Hokkaido University made a policy change and approved military-academia cooperation. The document criticizes the university director for making such a significant change in a top-down way without having discussions with the faculties.

The statement stresses that the Defense Ministry’s subsidy program is part of the Abe government’s attempt to turn Japan into a military superpower.

The statement points out that military research go against the spirit of the war-renouncing Article 9. It goes on to state that the Abe government is using its bulging military-related budget to tempt scientists to work to develop a variety of weapons, which could damage university autonomy and academic freedom. The statement says that universities should raise their voices against such a government policy.

The group which published the statement was formed by professors and former teaching staff of universities, colleges, and technical colleges in Hokkaido to oppose the lifting of the ban on the exercise of the collective self-defense right by the Abe Cabinet in 2014.

Past related articles:
> Defense Ministry to boost subsidies for military research projects [September 7, 2016]
> Health professionals and scientists in statement protest against military-academia cooperation [June 9, 2016]
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