Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies was founded in July 2007, and arose initially within the College of Sociology during its celebration of fiftieth anniversary. Its aim has been to make progress in research and education, and to over decisive insight of the distinct character of the field of urban studies in the Graduate School of Sociology. The Institute exists to encourage the growing potential of urban studies within the Faculty and to improve the quality of research and education as expressed on the emerging urban studies tradition of the College of Sociology. The Institute aimed at conducting its activities by taking full advantage of the campus located in the central city. It has long held out the aspiration of participating in a significant inter-disciplinary development of urban studies. In time, the Institute has become an independent research institution, as demonstrated when it was separated institutionally from the College of Sociology, and its members have henceforth been from inter-departmental domains with the participation of researchers from across the University.
In May 2007, a Workshop for Global Urban Studies was organized by faculty and students. On that occasion Graduate School of Sociology had the opportunity to review some other that a few of its professors had already started, individually and collectively, thanks to Grant-in-Aid Scientific Research funds. A month later the agreement for an exchange program with the College of Urban Sciences, University of Seoul and the College of Sociology was concluded. It has been initiatives such as these that have slowly, but surely, strengthened the institute’s institutional framework.
In September 2014, the Rikkyo Institute for Global Urban Studies and the Centre for Population and Urban Research, Melbourne, announced their official affiliation. This is in accordance with Monash University’s International Plan 2011-2015 “Advanced research standing and impact through international connectedness.” The two institutions agreed that our cooperation to promote research activities would be mutually beneficial.
It is intended to develop the Institute as a center for inter-disciplinary urban studies with a comprehensive global perspective. It intends to take full advantage of the University’s
central city campus. The Institute sees itself engaged in fundamental four activities:
(1) Promoting research on urban issues and related educational activities;
(2) Collecting books and other materials necessary for advanced research and education;
(3) Collaborating with research institutions and scholars outside the University that share the same interests; and
(4) Organizing lectures and workshops.
In an era when the restructuring of urban life is well under way due to the impact of globalization and the increasing significance of local responses, the role of this Institute has become more significant by the day.