News and Events
Rwanda-Japan Academic and Student Exchange Fair 2018 at the University of Rwanda on 16th February 2018
The “Rwanda-Japan Academic and Student Exchange Fair 2018” was held on 15th and 16th February 2018 at KIST2 and Kigali Exhibition Village respectively, in the University of Rwanda Nyarugenge Campus under the partnership between the University of Rwanda in Rwanda and Hokkaido University in Japan. The Fair was our sixth attempt of its kind in the region since the commencement of this project in 2015. Unlike the previous events, however, this Fair introduced online participation for the first time by employing an internet TV conference system so as to invite more participation from Japan.
In response to the call by our University, 7 Universities, namely, Miyagi University, University of Tsukuba, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Toyo University, Kobe Institute of Computing, Hiroshima University, and Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, and related organization such as Japan Student Service Organization (JASSO), Japan Society for the Promotion of Sciences (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station, the Japanese Embassy in Rwanda, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Rwanda Office participated in the Fair. In addition, more diverse opportunities were displayed this time in collaboration with Ashinaga Uganda, a Japanese NGO actively involved in promoting better access to higher education abroad for underprivileged pupils in Africa.
On the first day of the Fair (15th February 2018), a Joint Workshop was held in order to strengthen collaboration/partnerships of universities between Rwanda and Japan. Over 60 people from various universities in Kigali such as the University of Rwanda and Christian University of Rwanda attended the Workshop.
After the welcome remarks by Prof. Philip Cotton, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Rwanda, Dr. Daisuke Mizoguchi, the Director of JSPS Nairobi Research Station explained Japan’s attempts on promoting research activities and academic exchange between universities in Africa and Japan. Ambassador Charles Murigande, Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC) of the University of Rwanda presented the current status and priority areas of focus regarding the partnerships with universities abroad. And then each of participating universities from Japan introduced its features and areas of interest for collaboration. During the overall discussion some areas like a study on peace and coexistence were proposed and continual communication for further discussion was agreed by both side.
On the second day (16th February 2018), the Seminar for Study-in-Japan was held to provide first-hand information on studying in Japan for students and graduates of Universities in Rwanda, Secondary School Pupils, junior academics, researchers, university staff or any other interested individuals who may want to pursue their studies in Japan.
After the welcome remarks by Ambassador Murigande, DVC of the University of Rwanda, the Seminar was blessed by H.E. Mr. Takayuki Miyashita, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Embassy of Japan in the Republic of Rwanda, followed by the remarks from Mr. Hiroyuki Takada, the Chief Representative of JICA Rwanda Office and Prof. Masahiro Okumura, the Director of Africa Office in Lusaka, Hokkaido University.
During the session the representatives of participating universities/organizations explained an overview of studying in Japan including courses offered in English and opportunities for financial assistance such as scholarships, special study-in-Japan Programmes, and the details of each participating institute. After the session the participants were given opportunities to have individual consultations, which enabled them to have face-to-face communications with the participating institutes for further inquiries. The information kits for 19 universities/an organization were also displayed and distributed during the consultations.
(1) Otaru University of Commerce
(2) Hirosaki University
(3) Tohoku University (Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering)
(4) Miyagi University
(5) Yamagata University
(6) University of Tsukuba
(7) Shibaura Institute of Technology
(8) The University of Tokyo
(9) Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology
(10) Sophia University
(11) Toyo University
(12) International University of Japan
(13) University of Toyama
(14) Nagoya University (Graduate School of International Development)
(16) Doshisha University (Graduate School of Business)
(17) Hiroshima University
(18) Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
(19) Ashinaga Uganda
It was an astonishing moment to see the venue was overcrowded by over 1000 people and we had to change the venue to the Akagera Hall, which was the biggest in the Kigali Exhibition Village.
In conclusion the Fair was a success to universities in both countries. It is hoped that the Fair has facilitated to deepen their mutual understanding among universities in both countries, and that it will be a trigger to bring their relationships a step further towards the materialization of more concrete academic and/or educational collaborations.
[Online articles related to the Fair]
The University of Rwanda
Japan Society for the Promotion of Sciences (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station in Kenya
Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan
Study-in-Japan Seminar at LICS and Baobab College, Zambia
Study-in-Japan Seminars were held to promote Study-in-Japan at International Schools in the capital city of Zambia, Lusaka. On 26th October 2017, it was held at Lusaka International Community School (LICS), whose student population consists 60 percent of local students. On 21st November 2017, it was held at Baobab College. These Seminars provided general tips of studying in Japan by the study abroad coordinator from our office and the introduction of the Japanese Government Scholarship (MEXT Scholarship) by the Officer from the Embassy of Japan in Zambia. About 30 students mainly from A and AS level courses, participated keenly in each seminar and several questions such as language of instruction and ranking of Japanese universities were posed to the presenters. Some students also came to inquire from us after the seminar, which showed their strong interest in Study-in-Japan.
At these seminars, We provided some documents for information about studying in Japan including the "List of Japanese Universities with Undergraduate Programmes Adopting Pre-Arrival Admission," which would be helpful for Sub-Saharan African secondary school students. We appreciate the opportunity and cooperation from LICS, Baobab College and all the Japanese universities which gave us the information for making this list. (You can download this list and other information about Study-in-Japan from this page.)
Ethio-Japan Academic and Student Exchange Fair 2017 at Ras Mekonnen Hall, Addis Ababa University on 20th Sept. 2017
The Ethio-Japan Academic and Student Exchange Fair 2017 was held in collaboration with the Addis Ababa University and under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan, the Japanese Embassy in Ethiopia, and Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station in Kenya, on 20th September 2017 at the Ras Mekonnen Hall of the University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In the morning, a workshop was organized for the academics and administrative staff, aiming to strengthen collaboration/partnerships of universities between Ethiopia and Japan. Around 100 people participated in the sessions, and they shared experiences of Japan’s research assistance programmes on one hand and the current situation of research activities and potential areas of collaboration in Ethiopia on the other hand. Soon after the workshop, especially during lunch break, some individual interactions took place among those who had common interests in their research areas.
In the afternoon, an open seminar was held for the Ethiopian people who are interested in studying Japan. Close to 300 people, mainly students from various universities even as far as from Mekelle University in the country, came to participate in this session despite the terrible downpour on that day. They enthusiastically listened to the presentation about an overview and several programmes on studying in Japan. The participating Japanese universities also presented their features and strong points, and thereafter further explanations were made for the participants at each desk outside the Hall during the time for individual consultations.
**The Japanese Universities and Other related Organizations that participated in this Fair (9)(in random order)
- Hokkaido University
- Shibaura Institute of Technology
- Tokyo University of Agriculture
- Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
- Utsunomiya University
- International University of Japan
- Kyoto University
- Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan
- Japan Student Service Organization
**The Japanese Universities that Provided Information Kits (20) (in random order)
- Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine
- Otaru University of Commerce
- Tohoku University, Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering
- University of Tsukuba
- The University of Tokyo, Graduate School of Public Policy
- Ochanomizu University
- Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology
- Tokyo Metropolitan University
- Tokyo International University
- Sophia University
- Yokohama National University
- Shinshu University
- Toyohashi University of Technology
- Doshisha Business School, Global Business and Management Studies
- Kansai University
- Ritsumeikan University
- Kyushu University
- Nagasaki University
- Kyushu Institute of Technology
- Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
The Fair was a great success mainly due to the warm and generous support from Addis Ababa University, all the participating Japanese universities and organizations, and all the other participants! We, Hokkaido University Africa Office in Lusaka, appreciate all their efforts from the bottom of our heart.
Addis Ababa University
Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan
Embassy of Japan in Ethiopia
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station in Kenya
※As the side event of the Ethio-Japan Academic and Student Exchange Fair, Study-in-Japan Seminar was held at Sandford International School, Addis Ababa, which is one of the top-level schools in Ethiopia and out of whose graduates 90% go to study abroad. This seminar was participated by Hokkaido University, Kyoto University, Shibaura Institute of Technology, and Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO). Although it was a short time during their lunch break, we had a good interaction with 44 students in attendance and this was followed by very informative and stimulating discussion with the college counselor concerning difference of admission criteria between two countries. We appreciate the support from Sandford International School and all participants.
Attendance at The 3rd SAJU Forum on 15th-16th July 2017
The 3rd South Africa – Japan University (SAJU) Forum was held at Odaiba, Tokyo from July 15th to 16th. President Toyoharu NAWA and Prof. Masahiro OKUMURA, Director of the Hokkaido University Africa Office in Lusaka attended the event.
Until now, two SAJU forums have been held to establish frameworks for academic collaboration between South Africa and Japan in higher education; the first one was held at Hiroshima in 2007 and the second one at Cape Town in 2008. For the third one this year, around three hundred representatives from twenty-five Japanese universities, twenty-one South African universities, and officials of the government and industry participated.
This year, under the main theme ”Cooperation between South African and Japanese universities towards achieving sustainable development goals (SDG),” there were keynotes by specialists from industries, the government, and universities from Japan and South Africa. This was followed by four parallel sessions dedicated to “Environment and Energy,” “Health,” “Education, Humanity and Society” and ”Agriculture and Food.” In each session, participants and panelists discussed ways for universities in Japan and South Africa to collaborate in the future to solve global and local problems and achieve set SDGs.
President NAWA chaired the “Environment and Energy” session and discussion which followed. The session consisted of presentations by seven Japanese universities and six South African universities about their activities in preserving the environment and energy. As one of the chairmen, President NAWA acted as facilitator and summarized the session. Prof. OKUMURA was one of the presenters for the session and introduced prospective research collaborations between Hokkaido University and the South African region. In his presentation, he talked about the university’s Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS) and their project titled “Visualization of Impact of Chronic/Latent Chemical Hazard and Geo-Ecological Remediation.” This project is led by Prof. Mayumi ISHIZUKA and Prof. Toshifumi IGARASHI. His presentation also included other research activities undertaken with researchers in South Africa as follows;
- “Indoor airborne radioactivity measurement near mine tailings in West Rand, SA” by Associate Prof. Kazuhiro TOYODA, Faculty of Environmental Earth Science.
- “Is DDT really safe for vector control? Bio-hazard control vs. Chemical-hazard” by Associate Prof. Yoshinori IKENAKA, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine.
Afterwards, President NAWA and the South African chairman wrapped up the session and expressed their expectations that future collaborations between Japan and South Africa will put to practical use the technical strength of Japan and resources of South Africa.
Study-in-Japan Educational Seminar at Chengelo School
On 31st May 2017, we had a event at Chengelo School, Mkushi, Zambia. Chengelo School welcomed and supported us so much. 50 sixth form (A level) students came to attend our seminar and listened attentively to our talk. After the seminar, two of students showed us around their beautiful campus, where we enjoyed walking.
We heard more than half graduates of this school usually go to study abroad. We believe our event made an opportunity for them to get an interest in studying in Japan!!
Study-in-Japan Educational Seminar at National High Schools
Study-in-Japan Educational Seminars were held to promote Study-in-Japan at National High Schools in Zambia. On 17th May, it was held at David Kaunda National Technical High School (DK) in Lusaka. Around 150 students came and enjoyed our talk. On 22nd May, it was also held at Hillcrest National Technical High School in Livingstone. Around 200 students attended and asked many questions lively. With the wonderful support from DK and Hillcrest staff, and Embassy of Japan in Zambia, these event were a great success.
One of alumnus from DK who is currently studying in Japan, gave a video speech. It entertained high school students so much.
※Some information about Study-in-Japan which we provide at our seminars is here.
Study-in-Japan Educational Seminar at UNZA 2017
Study-in-Japan Educational Seminar was held at University of Zambia (UNZA) on 26th April, 2017 at NELT (New Education Lecture Theatre), School of Education, UNZA.
With the wonderful support from UNZA and Embassy of Japan in Zambia, it provided a great opportunities to all participants for considering Study-in-Japan. Total of participants was around 200.
The participants also enjoyed the attractive presentation by one of their peer who has studied at Hokkaido University.
GHANA AND JAPAN STUDENT EXCHANGE -2017 FAIR at Great Hall, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana on 15th Feb.
1. Joint Workshop (9：00-12：30)
It was held for academic and administrative university staff in order to strengthen collaboration/partnership of universities between Ghana and Japan. Participating universities in Ghana such us University of Ghana, University of Cape Coast and University of Health and Allied Sciences had opportunities to enter into future academic collaboration and students exchange with the universities in Japan, namely Hokkaido University, International University of Japan, Kanazawa University, Kyoto University, Mie University, Tokyo Medical & Dental University, Tsukuba University (Tsukuba University took part in a teleconference) especially during the free group discussion time.
2. Seminar on Study-in-Japan
It was held for students and graduates of universities in Ghana, pupils and career masters of high schools in Ghana, faculties and university staff, etc.
The Japanese universities, namely Hokkaido University, International University of Japan, Kyoto University, Mie University, Tokyo Medical & Dental University, Kanazawa University came to explain the details of and opportunities at their universities. Embassy of Japan in Ghana, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO) and Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station in Kenya provided the information of their scholarship systems. Alumni who studied in Japan universities gave a talk about their experiences in Japan, which got the participants excited.
They also held individual consultations for participants. Furthermore, brochures and pamphlets for display and distribution was also provided by 21 universities in Japan as follows (listed in random order);
1) Tokyo International University
2) Niigata University of Health and Welfare
3) Yamagata University
4) Yokohama National University
5) Kindai University
6) Ritsumeikan University
7) Otaru University of Commerce
8) Sophia University
9) Doshisha University
10) Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
11) The University of Tokyo
12) University of the Ryukyus
13) Saitama University
14) Kyushu University
15) Akita University
16) Tsuda College
17) Hirosaki University
18) Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology
19) Okayama University
20) Kyushu Institute of Technology
21) University of Tsukuba
With the warm and generous support from University of Ghana, every participant university from Japan, and all scholars and students who participated in this fair, it was an emphatic success! Total of participants for the workshop was about 70 and for the seminar, about 450. We, Hokkaido University Africa Office in Lusaka, appreciated all their efforts from the bottom of our heart.
- University of Ghana
- Ghana Alumni of Japanese Universities (GAJU)
- Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Nairobi Research Station in Kenya
- Embassy of Japan in Ghana
- Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports Science and Technology (MEXT) in Japan
※As the pre-event of the Ghana and Japan Exchange Student -2017 Fair, Study in Japan Educational Seminar 2017 was held at Presbyterian Boy's Senior High School, Accra, which is one of top-level schools in Ghana, especially in filed of science. This seminar was
participated by Hokkaido University, Kyoto University, Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO) and Embassy of Japan in Ghana. The total of attendees was about 130 students, who listened the seminar with attention. We appreciate the support from Presbyterian Boy's Senior High School, Ghana Education Service, and all participants.
Study in Japan Fair 2016 at University of Nairobi, Kenya on 26th October
The programme for this fair was as follows:
1. 9:00-12:30, The Joint Workshop
It was held for academic and administrative university staff in order to strengthen collaboration/partnership of universities between Kenya and Japan at Central Catering Unit [CCU].
2. 14:00- 17:00, The Seminar and Exposition on Study-in-Japan
It was held for students and general public at Edu 8.4.4. Multi-Purpose Hall.
The Japanese universities, namely Hokkaido University, International University of Japan, Nagasaki University, Nagoya University, Okayama University, and Toyo University came to explain the details of and opportunities at their universities. They held Individual Consultations for participants from 15:30.
With the wonderful support from University of Nairobi, every participant university from Japan, and all scholars and students who participated in our fair, it was a great success!!! Total of participants was more than 500. We, Hokkaido University Africa Lusaka Office, appreciated all efforts from them.
Japanese Language Class (Nov. 2016~)
- Department of Literature & Languages, Dr. Sande NGALANDE
0976134774 / firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hokkaido University Lusaka Office, Dr. Midori DAIMON
0963019815 / email@example.com
Memorandum of Understanding with University of Pretoria, 29th August, 2016
The signing ceremony of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Hokkaido University (Hokudai) and University of Pretoria (UP) was held at Hatfield Campus, University of Pretoria, in the Republic of South Africa. From Hokudai side, it was attended by the President, Prof. Keizo YAMAGUCHI, our Director, Prof. Masahiro OKUMURA and our Study Abroad Coordinators Mr. Satoshi NAKAMURA and Dr. Noriko NARISAWA.
UP is one of the greatest universities in South Africa, which has 9 faculties and 1 business school, and more than 50,000 students including around 4,500 international students. Hokudai has established partnerships and collaborations with UP through researchers of Veterinary Medicine and Engineering. In March 2015, when Vice Chancellor of UP, Prof. Cheryl de la Rey visited Japan, she met with Vice President of Hokudai, Prof. Ichiro UEDA, and recognized the need for the two universities to develop the academic exchange agreement. In September 2015, a Study-in-Japan Fair in UP was held by our then office member, Associate Prof. Keiji YAMAGUCHI and current Lecturer, Mr. NAKAMURA as one of the activities under “Study-in-Japan Coordinator Project.” At the Fair, the two universities discussed opportunities for mutual studies and potential collaboration, which resulted into the conclusion of MOU.
The ceremony was attended by the Director of Center for Japanese Studies, Prof. Cycil G. HRTELL, Dean of Faculty of Humanities, Prof. Vasu REDDY and Dean of Faculty of Education, Prof. Chika SEHOOLE from UP. Furthermore, the Minister-Counselor of Japanese Embassy in South Africa, Mr. Shuichiro KAWAGUCHI participated and gave complimentary remarks. There were almost twenty participants from Japan and South Africa. This MOU would promote and enhance academic exchange in education and other studies between the two universities.
Attendance at TICADⅥ, 28th August 2016
Our Director, Prof. OKUMURA, our Study Abroad Coordinators, Mr. NAKAMURA and Dr. NARISAWA attended the Sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICADⅥ), which was held in Nairobi, Kenya, on 27th and 28th August. Over 11,000 people participated in TICADⅥ, including the representatives of 53 African countries as well as international and regional organizations, the private sector, and NGOs. From Hokkaido University (Hokudai), adding to our director and study abroad coordinators, the President of Hokudai, Prof. Keizo YAMAGUCHI and the Director of Research Center for Zoonosis Control (CZC) of Hokudai, Prof. Yasuhiko SUZUKI also attended.
We made a poster which showed the activities of Hokudai in Africa and introduced our activities including ‘Study-in-Japan Coordinator Project’ to attendees of TICADⅥ. Prof. Takahiro MORIO from University of Tsukuba in Japan also presented the activities of his university and Japan-Africa Academic Network (JAAN). During the session of TICADⅥ, Prof. YAMAGUCHI made statements and presented the activities of Hokudai including the studies of infectious disease and the training of young African researchers as Zoonosis Control Experts at CZC.
In next TICAD what shall we show? Our effort in Africa will be continued…
2015-2016 Hokkaido University Guidebook
The latest edition of "Hokkaido University Guidebook 2015-2016" has been published and uploaded to the website below:
The Hokkaido University Guidebook is an annual publication consisting of a compilation of facts and figures about Hokkaido University, including information on our organizational structure, facilities, faculties and academic offerings. It provides comprehensive information on better understanding of Hokkaido University.
Other publications on the activities of Hokkaido University have been uploaded onto the page of "LINKS" ⇒ Click here
Official Opening Ceremony of Japanese Language Course at University of Zambia
29th November, 2013
University of Zambia and Hokkaido University Lusaka Office held the official opening ceremony of the Japanese Language Course on 29th November, 2013 at the School of Veterinary Medicine Main Lecture Theatre. The ceremony was carried out successfully with warm atmosphere in collaboration between Zambia and Japan under the theme: "Exchanging Cultural Experiences for Our Better Tomorrow".
This significant event was attended by the Vice Chancellor of University of Zambia, the Deputy Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education, the Ambassador of Japan to Zambia, the Director of Hokkaido University Lusaka Office, and the General Manager of Toshiba Corporation Johannesburg Representative Office.
The teaching of Japanese Language is held in the School of Veterinary Medicine seminar room which is next to our office. This course is an extension course which can be taken by not only students and staff of the University of Zambia but also persons outside of the University.
Furthermore, it was announced that the Senate of the University of Zambia has just approved a first year course of Japanese language called "Introductory
Japanese Grammar" as an elective course that can be taken by any of the students especially those that are in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences and in the School of Education. This
formal launch of Japanese education at the University of Zambia could be the first of it's kind in the history of Zambia and even in southern Africa.
At the ceremony, we had great opportunities including an official handover of training and learning equipment donated by Toshiba Corporation, and presentation of a short movie introducing Hokkaido University. There were also Zambian traditional dance performance by Munali Girls Secondary School, and Japanese traditional dance performance called "Soran Bushi" by Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers from JICA whose members introduced themselves in Zambian local languages individually. These interesting, colorful and energetic performances brought excitement and joy to the audience at the venue.
Further information on this event can be accessed on the following website of the Embassy of Japan in the Republic of Zambia;
Japanese Language Course
21st October, 2013
University of Zambia in conjunction with Hokkaido University Lusaka Office has established a Japnese Language Course for beginners. The course is supported by Embassy of Japan in Zambia and Toshiba Corporation.
The course is going to start on 5th November at a seminar room next to our office in School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zambia.
If you are interested in taking this course, please don't hesitate to contact us.
TICADV in Yokohama
3rd June, 2013
The fifth meeting of The Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICADV) was held in Yokohama on 1st to 3rd June and marks the 20th anniversary of the TICAD process.
The Prime Minister of Japan, Mr. Shinzo Abe, said, “Over the next five years, Japan will support African growth through public and private means of 3.2 trillion yen (approximately $32 billion), including ODA of around 1.4 trillion yen and other public and private resources of around 16 billion dollars.”
Announcing the Africa Business Education (ABE) Initiative for the youth as part of human resource development, Abe said, “We will offer undergraduate and graduate education to young people from Africa who come to study in Japan, and in addition we will simultaneously provide opportunities to work as interns at Japanese companies. This will be at a scale of 1,000 students over five years.”
Conclusions of Agreements with Copperbelt University
6th February, 2013
Hokkaido University concluded the agreement with Copperbelt University to promote educational and academic exchange and cooperation at Copperbelt University in Kitwe, Zambia.
Under the Academic Exchange Agreement, the two universities have also concluded the Memorandum of Understanding on Student Exchange. These are the first conclusions of the agreements achieved through the Hokkaido University Lusaka Office’s support and facilitation since the office was established.
Lusaka Office Opening Ceremony
28th August, 2012
Hokkaido University and University of Zambia have honorably launched the overseas office of Hokkaido University in Lusaka, the capital city of Republic of Zambia in 2012. The office is located at the center of excellence of science and technology in Africa, University of Zambia on the basis of a long lasting successful relationship between the two universities.
The two universities held a celebration party for this new monumental landmark for their collaboration at TajPamodzi Hotel Lusaka on 27th August, 2012 and its official opening ceremony at SamoraMachel School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zambia on the following day, 28th August. As Hokkaido University expands its activities for constructing the global network of knowledge, the regional office in Lusaka will disseminate the information of its scientific activities to higher educational institutes in the region of Africa for its publicity.
Our office aims to provide necessary information and support for African students and researchers who wish to study in Hokkaido, Japan, and encourage research collaboration between Hokkaido University and African institutions.