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ASU cements collaboration with Japan’s APU

February 18, 2010

A 15-year research collaboration between Japan’s Aichi Prefectural University and Arizona State University was formalized Feb. 18 with the signing of an agreement that brings promises of student and faculty exchanges and a joint graduate program.

“I am happy to sign this agreement today to cement the friendship and cooperation of both universities,” said Tadayoshi Takashima, vice president of Aichi Prefectural University, Nagakute-cho, Japan.

“This is a wonderful occasion that fixes and institutionalizes a fruitful collaboration from the past several years,” said Sander van der Leeuw, director of the School of Human Evolution and Social Change in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He also signed the agreement during a ceremony in the ASU Museum of Anthropology on the Tempe campus.

Van der Leeuw spoke of the joint discoveries and research over the years that were carried out at Teotihuacan’s Pyramid of the Moon, located north of Mexico City. That project was coordinated by Saburo Sugiyama, associate research professor at ASU and professor at APU.

Sugiyama was in attendance at the ceremony, along with other faculty members who work at the ASU-managed archaeological research center in Teotihuacan with colleagues from APU, including Professor Ben Nelson, in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change, and Professor Emeritus George Cowgill. Also attending was Linda Lederman, dean of social sciences at ASU.

Sealing a formal agreement between the two universities brings with it the opportunity for future agreements, including the exchange of faculty and research staff, student exchanges, and a joint graduate program, van der Leeuw said.

Not in attendance, but also adding her signature to the agreement, was Elizabeth D. Capaldi, ASU executive vice president and provost.

Kathleen Fairfax, ASU vice provost for Global Education Services, took note of the unusualness of the signed agreement, coming after many years of collaboration. “This is not a new relationship today, but formalizes the relationship, especially in the research in Mexico, where the two universities have collaborated for a long time,” she said.

While at ASU, Takashima toured Barrett, the Honors College, and the Ceramics Research Center in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.