Faculty of Agriculture | Okayama University


Our Mission Statement

In the 21st century, humanity is facing serious problems, such as food shortages, declines in resources and clean energy, deteriorating health, and corruption of the environment. Solving these problems through education and research is the most important goal of the Faculty of Agriculture of Okayama University. The Faculty provides educational programs in basic and advanced sciences related to agriculture, the food industry, and the environment, as well as new biotechnologies. Founded as a college of higher education and research in agriculture in 1946, it was organized as the Faculty of Agriculture when Okayama University was established in 1949. Since then, the Faculty has been continuously developing in terms of facilities and organization as well as education and research activities in order to meet the demands of society and the sciences. The Faculty of Agriculture has a bright future with many excellent students and faculty members.

Philosophy and Goals

Mission Statement of the School of Agriculture

  Agricultural science is an academic discipline that explores applications of biological resources to food production and the conservation of the natural environment with the aim of creating a world where humankind and nature coexist in harmony. In this sense, the discipline supports the sustainable development of humankind. We, as humankind in the 21st century, face the urgent challenge of resolving food, environmental, and energy issues caused by population growth and human activities. Establishing a sustainable food system in particular is a pressing issue we must tackle right now. It can be said that the key to permanent development of humankind lies in agricultural science, which is closely concerned with these issues.

 The School of Agriculture at Okayama University has in place an education and research system aimed at developing human resources who can demonstrate leadership by contributing to achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Building on an education system with four courses (Agrochemical Bioscience, Applied Plant Science, Applied Animal Science, and Environmental Ecology), we provide education aimed at enabling students to obtain comprehensive specialized knowledge of agricultural science and the ability to apply this knowledge to society. Leveraging its distinctive expertise, each of the four courses covers a wide range of research fields, from “micro-science,” which concerns molecules and genes, to “macro-science” at field levels. The school also boasts a wide variety of facilities and locations for education and research activities, not only in class rooms and laboratories but also in the Field Science Center, the Hachihama Farm, the Tsudaka Stock Farm, and the Handayama Hill, which provides a beautiful background to the campus.

 Current demands for accelerated digital transformation and green transformation, as well as situations resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, have required humankind to drastically change its perspectives, ways of thinking, and behavior. Nevertheless, as a discipline that covers food and the environment, agricultural science has a timeless responsibility for championing agriculture as the foundation for human activities, no matter how human values change. The School of Agriculture, Okayama University, awaits you with a wonderful environment for education and research underpinned by its long history. I look forward to working together with many of you to create a brighter future while pursuing agricultural science that supports the sustainability and well-being of humankind.

2. Mission Statement of the School of Agriculture
The School of Agriculture is a pioneer in agricultural science that supports sustainable development of humankind.
 All organisms on Earth live in a very limited area of the biosphere. Humankind has prospered by skillfully utilizing environments and resources available there. Agricultural production, which human civilization has been built on, developed by integrating itself with the natural environment, including water, land, and forests, and leveraging the organic cycles of life and nature.
 However, the development of industrial technology, which has dramatically increased production output, has triggered many serious issues, including food crises caused by population growth, energy issues, pollution, and environmental destruction. Industrial production activities have been therefore a threat to the precious biosphere. Solutions to this critical situation lie in the science of sustainable agriculture, which aims to not only increase productivity but also protect the natural environment from destruction. Based on this idea, the School of Agriculture at Okayama University works to develop human resources as described below.

● Education and research principle: Developing human resources who can contribute to solving the challenge of realizing a more harmonious global symbiotic system, focusing on the core concepts of “Earth,” “humankind,” and “agricultural science.”
 Until now, industrial activities have treated Earth merely as a source of various resources or a place for production activities, neglecting the basic recognition that it is a place for organisms to live. Agricultural science is the only academic discipline that can comprehensively pursue harmony between production and life in an organic connection between humankind and nature.
Furthermore, in recent years, the introduction of bioscience and biotechnology has made agricultural science an integrated science that encompasses a wide range of fields, such as biology, medicine, and pharmacy. Together with electronics, agricultural science has been a focus of great expectations in the industrial world.

● System for fulfilling the educational and research principle (1): A single-department system with the Department of Agricultural Sciences
 As an education and research system aimed at developing human resources who can demonstrate their capabilities in a wide range of fields, we have adopted a single-department system whereby we select students from applicants for the Department of Agricultural Sciences. In their first year, students learn about the current situation, issues, and future visions for research concerning the global symbiotic system, instead of being confined to the narrow fields of their majors.
• Generalists with comprehensive specialized knowledge in agricultural science and the ability to apply it to society

● System for fulfilling the educational and research principle (2): Studying in four courses and then advancing to education and research units
 After completing their first-year basic education in a wide range of fields in the single department, students enter the next stage of expertise in four courses (Agrochemical Bioscience, Applied Plant Science, Applied Animal Science, and Environmental Ecology). They then advance to education and research units, where they finally review what they have learned and conduct research in a problem-solving learning process to prepare their graduation theses. The school thus has in place an education and research system with multiple stages.

• Generalists in the course-related fields
• Specialists in the unit-related fields
• Entrepreneurs from the Field Science Center, the Tsudaka Stock Farm, and the Handayama Hill, who can make a meaningful contribution to the wider regional and global society

● Objective of education and research at the School of Agriculture
 Resources available to humankind are limited, but there are endless possibilities for their utilization. Agricultural science has an important role to play in solving various issues faced by humankind in the 21st century. Our planet constitutes a huge symbiotic system. The School of Agriculture, Okayama University will take on the challenge of realizing a fertile and abundant global symbiotic system.