||Message from the Dean of Graduate School of Information Science and Technology:
Toward the Realization of a Happy Information Society
Graduate School of Information Science and Technology
Dean and Professor, Shuichi Sakai
Nobody doubts that “information” is the key word of modern society. For many, “information” simply means the computer or the internet. There are others who may think of robots, smart phones, video games, and animation.
Seventy years have passed since the world's first computer. It has only been seventy years, but during this time, information science and technology have improved drastically. Along with these developments in science and technology, our society has become what is called an “information-oriented society.”
The Graduate School of Information Science and Technology at the University of Tokyo is the place to study and research “information” related science and technology. Although our graduate school is somewhat small, with only 170 regular faculty members and 700 students, there is a wide variety of research fields and research methods being implemented in a free atmosphere where progressive spirits can thrive. Of course, we also all feel proud that the education and research offered at our graduate school is of the highest caliber in the world. Computer, communication, media, mathematical informatics, control theory, robotics, artificial intelligence, bio informatics, information security - every field is full of fascination, and we try to create a new field every year. At the same time, we continue to take on many new challenges, such as new education programs, international coordination, and facilitating cooperation between education, industry, and government.
“Information” has the power to change our society through things that are familiar to us, such as our smart phones and social media. There are so many great things about this kind of information technology - people’s transmitting power increases, communication between people far apart becomes possible, the distribution of things and affairs becomes better, promoting disaster prevention and assisting in rebirth from disaster becomes more effective, support for music and screen image art becomes stronger, and much more. However, there are also drawbacks to its increasing availability, such as privacy violations, copyright infringement, cyber attacks, and internet bullying through clandestine school portal weblog sites. It has brought out both light and dark in our modern society. Some people can only see information science technology this way.
I myself think that “information” is very important and has the power to improve society from an even deeper place than people can now imagine. Society right now is exhausted due to excessive economic competition and materialism. Information Science and Technology must exist in order for this battered society to transform into something brighter for the well-being of humankind. Is this really possible? Now is the time to apply ourselves to study and research in order to test our wisdom in our pursuit of information science and technology.