Based on assessments of the “21st Century COE Program” and verifications of its results to date carried out by Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) from FY2002, a decision was made to establish the “Global COE (Centers of Excellence) Program.” The program will provide funding support for establishing education and research centers that perform at the apex of global excellence to elevate the international competitiveness of the Japanese universities. The program will strengthen and enhance the education and research functions of graduate schools, to foster highly creative young researchers who will go on to become world leaders in their respective fields through experiencing and practicing research of the highest world standard.
The following five fields were covered in FY2008’s application; Life Sciences; Chemistry, Material Sciences; Information Sciences, Electrical and Electronic Sciences; Humanities. A total of 315 programs were submitted by 130 national, public, and private universities. However, only 68 programs submitted by 29 universities were adopted.