At the time of the March 11, 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake Disaster, I was the director of Tohoku University Hospital. Fortunately, the hospital had been damaged a little by the earthquake. The hospital’s staffs treated trauma patients in need of emergency care, even as recovered the hospital’s functions. We all pulled together and made our best effort with a slogan “We will be devoted to logistic support to defend the front lines of the disaster medical care.” Tohoku University Hospital has fulfilled a central role in dispatching doctors to the coast area where is a tsunami-stricken area, and in accepting patients transferred from the hospitals in the disaster affected area without any condition.
Since the disaster, the affected area has taken steps slowly toward recovery from the terrible devastation, but the recovery process has just begun.
When assumed the office of President in April, 2012, I set up the goal “Leading the Restoration of Tohoku and Japan” that is one of objectives I want to achieve in my six-year time. As a university located in the center of the affected area, Tohoku University’s mission is to exert every effort toward restoration. Tohoku University will firmly support regional revitalization by creating new knowledge, through the activities of the Tohoku University Institute for Disaster Reconstruction and Regeneration Research (IDRRR), which was established in the aftermath of the disaster. Through the industry-academia-government collaboration, we will create new industries, which will increase employment and revitalize the Tohoku region. Therefore, we will act as an engine or driving force of knowledge that will revive Japan’s stagnant economy.
The real test for our effort is from now on. We are determined to continue our efforts for the recovery, with lots of supports from both domestic and overseas.
Tohoku University established the Institute for Disaster Reconstruction and Regeneration Research -IDRRR- headed by the president in April 2011, the aftermath of the 3.11 disaster. Since then, we have been engaged on research, education, and social contribution, with aim to lead the revitalization of Japan.
I have been appointed the Executive Vice President for Earthquake Disaster Reconstruction by the President Satomi. There are my sincere desires to spread our results out wide to society, to contribute the recovery of the affected area, and to indicate solutions for disaster recovery common to all humankind.
We were off and running eight large-scale projects such as international research projects over the disaster cycle by the International Research Institute of Disaster Science -IRIDeS-, and development of human resources in community medicine and advanced medical research centered around Tohoku Medical Megabank Organization. Furthermore, Tohoku University’s faculty members work on “ Reconstruction Action 100⁺”, which the generic name of more than 100 various voluntary projects.
Your support and cooperation in these efforts would be highly appreciated.