University of Kyoto
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University of Kyoto

Kyoto University
Kyoto University logo.svg
Motto in English
Freedom of academic culture
TypePublic (National)
EstablishedFounded June 18, 1897
Endowment¥ 250.2 billion (2.2 billion USD)
PresidentJuichi Yamagiwa
Academic staff
2,864 (Teaching Staff)[1]
Administrative staff
5,397 (Total Staff)[1]
Location, ,
Coordinates: 35°01?34?N 135°46?51?E / 35.026212°N 135.780842°E / 35.026212; 135.780842
135 ha (333 acres)
Athletics48 varsity teams
ColorsDark blue     
AffiliationsKansai Big Six, ASAIHL

Kyoto University (?, Ky?to daigaku), or Kyodai (, Ky?dai) is a national university in Kyoto, Japan. It is the second oldest Japanese university,[4] one of Asia's highest ranked universities and one of Japan's National Seven Universities. One of Asia's leading research-oriented institutions, Kyoto University is famed for producing world-class researchers, including 19 Nobel Prize laureates, 2 Fields medalists and one Gauss Prize winner . It has the most Nobel laureates of all universities in Asia.


Kyoto University's forerunner was the Chemistry School (, Seimi-kyoku) founded in Osaka in 1869, which, despite its name, taught physics as well ( is a transcription of a Dutch word chemie). Later, the Third Higher School (, Daisan-k?t?-gakk?), was established in the place of Seimi-kyoku in 1886, it then transferred to the university's present main campus in the same year.

Kyoto Imperial University (, Ky?to-teikoku-daigaku) as a part of the Imperial University system was established on June 18, 1897,[4] using the Third Higher School's buildings. The higher school moved to a patch of land across the street, where the Yoshida South Campus stands today, and was integrated into Kyoto University in May 1949 and became the College of Liberal Arts in September 1949.[5][6] In the same year of the university's establishment, the College of Science and Technology was founded. The College of Law and the College of Medicine were founded in 1899, the College of Letters in 1906, expanding the university's activities to areas outside natural science.

After World War II, the current Kyoto University was established by merging the imperial university and the Third Level School, which assumed the duty of teaching liberal arts as the Faculty of Liberal Arts (, Ky?y?-bu). The faculty was dissolved with the foundation of the Faculty of Integrated Human Studies (, S?g?-ningen-gakubu) in 1992.

Kyoto University has since 2004 been incorporated as a national university corporation under a new law which applies to all national universities.

Despite the incorporation which has led to increased financial independence and autonomy, Kyoto University is still partly controlled by the Japanese Ministry of Education (, Monbu-kagaku-sh?).

The University's Department of Geophysics and their Disaster Prevention Research Institute are represented on the national Coordinating Committee for Earthquake Prediction.[7]


The Clocktower

The university has three campuses in Yoshida, Kyoto; in Katsura, Kyoto; in Gokash?, Uji

Yoshida Campus is the main campus, with some laboratories located in Uji. The Graduate School of Engineering is currently under process of moving to the newly built Katsura Campus.


The university has about 22,000 students enrolled in its undergraduate and graduate programs.



  • Faculty of Integrated Human Studies
  • Faculty of Letters
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Economics
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Medicine
  • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Agriculture

Graduate schools


  • Graduate School of Letters
  • Graduate School of Education
  • Graduate School of Law
  • Graduate School of Economics
  • Graduate School of Science
  • Graduate School of Medicine
  • Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Graduate School of Engineering
  • Graduate School of Agriculture
  • Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies
  • Graduate School of Energy Science
  • Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies
  • Graduate School of Informatics
  • Graduate School of Biostudies
  • Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies
  • School of Government
  • Graduate School of Management
  • Kyoto University Law School (Japanese Text Only)
  • Kyoto University School of Public Health


Kyoto University promotes itself as an academic institution fostering a "spirit of freedom."[9] The university claims eleven Nobel Laureates and two Fields Medalists among its faculty and alumni. The university is also known as the starting point for the Kyoto School philosophical movement.

Notable research institutes and facilities

Academic rankings

Kyodai is one of the most prestigious universities in Japan. It can be seen in the several rankings such as shown below. The Academic Ranking of World Universities ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2015 2nd 2nd 26th
2014 2nd 2nd 26th
2013 2nd 2nd 26th
2012 2nd 2nd 26th
2011 2nd 2nd 27th
2010 2nd 2nd 24th
2009 2nd 2nd 24th
2008 2nd 2nd 23rd

The Times Higher Education ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2015-2016 2nd 9th 88th
2014-2015 2nd 9th 59th
2013-2014 2nd 7th 52nd
2012-2013 2nd 7th 54th
2011-2012 2nd 5th 52nd
2010-2011 2nd 8th 57th

The QS World University Rankings[note 1] ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2015/16 3rd 14th 38th
2014/15 2nd 12th 36th
2013 2nd 10th 35th
2012 2nd 10th 35th
2011 2nd 7th 32nd
2010 2nd 8th 23rd
2009 2nd 5th 25th
2008 2nd 3rd 25th

The URAP ranked the Kyoto University as follows:

Year Japan Asia World
2011 2nd 2nd 24th
University rankings
Toyo Keizai National[10]General 3
Kawaijuku National[11]General 2
T. Reuters National[12]Research 2
WE National[13]Employment 10
NBP Kansai[14]Reputation 1
Shimano National[15]Selectivity SA
QS Asia
(Asian Ranking version)[16]
General 7
ARWU Asia[17]Research 2
THE World[18]General 74
QS World[19]General 32
ARWU World[17]Research 24
ENSMP World[20]Alumni 5
Program rankings
Social Sciences & Humanities


Asahi National[21]Research 6
BE Success National[22]Qualification 4
BE Pass rate National[23]Qualification 4


RePec National[24]Research 3


Eduni MBA National[25]General 5
Eduni MBA World[26]General 124
Natural Sciences & Technology


Kawaijuku National[27]General 2~3
QS World[28]General 20


T.Reuters National[29]Research 4
T.Reuters World[29]Research 22


T.Reuters National[29]Research 4
T.Reuters World[29]Research 25


T.Reuters National[29]Research 1
T.Reuters World[29]Research 4


T.Reuters National[29]Research 2
T.Reuters World[29]Research 23


ARWU National[30]Research 1
ARWU World[30]Research 19
Life Sciences


T.Reuters National[29]Research 3
T.Reuters World[29]Research 25


T.Reuters National[29]Research 2
T.Reuters World[29]Research 30
* T. Reuters World rankings include non-educational institutions

General rankings

The university was ranked 3rd in 2008 and 2010 in the ranking "Truly Strong Universities" by Toyo Keizai.[10] In another ranking, Japanese prep school Kawaijuku ranked Kyodai as the 2nd best university in Japan.[11]

Kyodai is also one of the top universities in the world. The following rankings are the example of Kyodai's ranking positions in the world rankings.

  • Kyoto University was ranked 24th in the world in the 2010 Academic Ranking of World Universities
  • 11th worldwide in the Global University Ranking.[31][32]
  • A human competitiveness index and analysis by the Human Resources & Labor Review, and published in Chasecareer Network, ranked the university 24th internationally and 2nd in Asia for 2010.[33]
  • QS World University Rankings[34] in 2011 placed Kyoto University 1st overall in the world, one behind University of Melbourne, seven places lower than the previous year.
  • The 2011 QS Asian Rankings make Kyoto University the seventh highest ranked university in Asia, the highest being The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.
  • Kyoto University was ranked 44th among the world's best universities and 2nd in Japan and 5th in Asia in 2019 according to the Top 500 Global Universities Rankings produced by CEOWORLD magazine.[35][]

Research performance

Kyodai is usually considered as one of the top research institution in Japan. In fact, the 2nd largest amount of investment from Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research, which is the national grants program for research institutions.

This financial support from the Japanese government has a direct effect on Kyodai's research outcomes. According to Thomson Reuters, Kyodai is the 1st best research university in Japan.[12] Its research excellence is especially distinctive in Chemistry (1st in Japan, 4th in the world), Biology & Biochemistry (2nd in Japan, 23rd in the world), Pharmacology & Toxicology (2nd in Japan,30 in the world), Immunology (3rd in Japan, 25th in the world), Material Science (4th in Japan, 22nd in the world), and Physics (4th in Japan, 25th in the world).[36]

In another ranking, Nikkei Shimbun on 2004/2/16 surveyed about the research standards in Engineering studies based on Thomson Reuters, Grants in Aid for Scientific Research and questionnaires to the heads of 93 leading Japanese Research Centers. Kyodai was placed in the 10th position (research planning ability 6th) in this ranking.[37]

Kyodai also has a high research standard in Social Sciences & Humanities. Repec in January 2011 ranked Kyodai's Institute of Economic Research as Japan's 3rd best economic research institution.[38] Kyodai has provided 6 presidents of the Japanese Economic Association in its 42-year history, which is the 3rd largest number.[39]

Asahi Shimbun summarized the amount of academic papers in Japanese major legal journals by university, and Kyodai was ranked 6th for the period between 2005 and 2009.[21]

Graduate school rankings

Kyodai Law School is considered as one of the top Law schools in Japan, being ranked 4th in terms of the number of successful candidates of Japanese Bar Examination in 2009 and 2010.[40]

Eduniversal ranked Japanese business schools, and the Faculty of Economics in Kyodai is placed 4th in Japan (111th in the world).[41]

Alumni rankings

Kyodai alumni are distinctively successful in Japanese industries such as shown below.

According to the Weekly Economist's 2010 rankings, graduates from Kyodai have the 10th best employment rate in 400 major companies in Japan.[42] However, it has to be noted that this lower ranking position is because of the large number of alumni who become government bureaucrats, which is 2nd largest among Japanese universities.[43] In fact, alumni of Kyodai's average salary is the 5th best in Japan, according to the PRESIDENT.[44]

Mines ParisTech : Professional Ranking World Universities ranks Kyodai as 5th in the world in 2011 in terms of the number of alumni listed among CEOs in the 500 largest worldwide companies.[20]

Popularity and selectivity

Kyodai is one of the most selective universities in Japan. Its entrance difficulty is usually considered as one of the top among 180 national and public universities.[45][46][47]


Kyoto University competes in 48 sports. The university is a member of the Kansai Big Six Baseball League.


Members of the university's American football team, the Kyoto University Gangsters, were arrested in 2006 for gang rape, which had been recently added to the Penal Code in January 2005 following the Super Free rape controversy. The three students had forced a female university student to drink liquor to the point of unconsciousness, at which point they gang-raped her. They were all convicted.[48][49]

Notable people

Nobel Prize Winners

11 alumni or faculty of Kyoto University have received the Nobel Prize:

Fields Medal Winners

  • Two alumni of Kyoto University have received the Fields Medal:
  1. Heisuke Hironaka - mathematician, Fields Medalists in 1970
  2. Shigefumi Mori - mathematician, Fields Medalists in 1990

Gauss Prize Winners

  1. Kiyosi Itô - mathematician, winner in 2006 for his works on probability theory.[50]

John Maddox Prize Winners

  1. Riko Muranaka, winner in 2017 for her combat of anti-HPV vaccination.[51]

Notable alumni

Graduates of Kyoto University including Nobel laureates, Japanese politicians, philosophers, economists, and scientists.

See also


  1. ^ The results for Japan and Asia are ranked separately by the QS Asian University Rankings


  1. ^ a b c "Kyoto University: 2008/2009 Facts and Figures" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on July 29, 2012. Retrieved 2008.
  2. ^[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on July 29, 2012. Retrieved 2008.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b "Historical Sketch". About Kyoto University. Kyoto University. 2004. Retrieved 2007.[dead link]
  5. ^ "History". KYOTO UNIVERSITY (in Japanese). Retrieved 2019.
  6. ^ "Third Higher School | Kyoto University Fund | Funds in Operation". Retrieved 2019.
  7. ^ Organizations with ties to CCEP CCEP, accessed March 19, 2011
  8. ^ a b "Departments". Kyoto University. Archived from the original on May 21, 2011.
  9. ^ "Basic Ideas & Policies: Kyoto University Mission Statement". Kyoto University. Archived from the original on June 14, 2007. Retrieved 2007.
  10. ^ a b "Truly Strong Universities" (in Japanese). Toyo Keizai. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  11. ^ a b "Kawai 30 Top Japanese Universities". Kawaijuku. 2001. Retrieved 2011.
  12. ^ a b "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan". Thomson Reuters. 2011. Retrieved 2011. (this raking includes 5 non-educational institutions)
  13. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  14. ^ "Nikkei BP Brand rankings of Japanese universities" (in Japanese). Nikkei Business Publications. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  15. ^ "GBUDU University Rankings" (in Japanese). YELL books. 2009. Retrieved 2011.
  16. ^ "QS Asian University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2016. Retrieved 2017.
  17. ^ a b "Academic Ranking of World Universities". Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  18. ^ "THE World University Rankings". Times Higher Education. 2018. Retrieved 2017.
  19. ^ "QS World University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2018. Retrieved 2017.
  20. ^ a b "ENSMP World University Rankings" (PDF). École nationale supérieure des mines de Paris. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  21. ^ a b Asahi Shimbun University rankings 2010 "Publification rankings in Law (Page 4)" (PDF) (in Japanese). Asahi Shimbun. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  22. ^ "Bar Exam Successful Applicants rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  23. ^ "Bar Exam Pass rate rankings" (in Japanese). Shikaku Seek. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  24. ^ "Top 25% Institutions and Economists in Japan, as of January 2011". REPEC. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  25. ^ "Business School Ranking in Japan". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  26. ^ "University and business school ranking in 5 palms (Top100)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 4 palms (Top101-300)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 3 palms (Top301-696)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
    "University and business school ranking in 2 palms (Top697-896)". Eduniversal. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  27. ^ "Kawaijuku japanese universities rankings in Engineering field" (in Japanese). Kawaijuku. 2012. Retrieved 2012.
  28. ^ "QS topuniversities world rankings in Engineering field". Topuniversities. 2012. Retrieved 2012.
  29. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Thomson Reuters 10 Top research institutions by subject in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  30. ^ a b "ARWU in Mathematics". Shanghai Jiaotong University. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  31. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 27, 2011. Retrieved 2009.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  32. ^ [1] Archived October 23, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  33. ^ [2] Archived May 11, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  34. ^ "QS World University Rankings - 2011". Top Universities. December 19, 2012. Archived from the original on October 1, 2011. Retrieved 2014.
  35. ^ "Best Universities In The World For 2019". CEOWORLD magazine. December 31, 2018. Retrieved 2019.
  36. ^ "Thomson Reuters 20 Top research institutions in Japan" (in Japanese). Thomson Reuters. Archived from the original on June 13, 2011. (this raking includes non-educational institutions)
  37. ^ "?(04.2.22)". Archived from the original on May 7, 2015. Retrieved 2014.
  38. ^ "Within Country and State Rankings at IDEAS: Japan". Retrieved 2014.
  39. ^ "Japanese Economic Association - JEA Global Site". Retrieved 2014.
  40. ^ "2010?(22?)? -seek". Retrieved 2014.
  41. ^ "University and business school ranking in Japan". Retrieved 2014.
  42. ^ "Employment rate in 400 major companies rankings" (in Japanese). Weekly Economist. 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  43. ^ "?:". January 19, 2011. Retrieved 2014.
  44. ^ at 02:51 - TrackBack(0) - (February 22, 1999). "?(2006?10?16):". Retrieved 2014.
  45. ^ Private universities apply different kind of exams. Thus it's only comparable between universities in a same category.
  46. ^ e.g. Yoyogi seminar published Hensachi (the indication showing the entrance difficulties by prep schools) rankings "Archived copy". Archived from the original on April 22, 2011. Retrieved 2016.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  47. ^ Japanese journalist Kiyoshi Shimano ranks its entrance difficulty as SA (most selective/out of 10 scales) in Japan. 2012 (in Japanese). YELL books. 2011. ISBN 4-7539-3018-1.
  48. ^ "Kyoto University trio held in suspected gang rapes". January 27, 2006 – via Japan Times Online.
  49. ^ "Kyoto U. students admit gang rape". February 7, 2006 – via Japan Times Online.
  50. ^ "Dr. Kiyoshi Ito receives Gauss Prize". Kyoto University. Retrieved 2017.
  51. ^ editor, Ian Sample Science (November 30, 2017). "Doctor wins 2017 John Maddox prize for countering HPV vaccine misinformation". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on November 30, 2017. Retrieved 2017. "Her courageous challenge in demonstrating the safety of the HPV vaccine, despite insult, litigation and attempts to undermine her professional status, epitomises the core spirit of the Maddox prize."CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)

External links

Media related to Kyoto University at Wikimedia Commons

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