We call our graduate school the Information School. Our mission is to engage in research and education about information. We are a member of the international iSchools Organization, a highly research-oriented consortium of information schools worldwide.
Interdisciplinary research and education is the main feature of our Information School. We understand the characteristics of information as shown in the conceptual diagram below, which shows the triangular relationship between “people and communities,” “information technology that reveals and conveys information,” “information resources as intellectual assets,” all revolving around “information” in the center of the triangle. Information has no significance unless people use and share it in their communities. Only when it is transmitted via a range of media, such as the printed word or the Internet, does information become usable by everyone. Collecting and providing information in user-friendly formats makes it easily accessible to both individuals and communities. If any of the key elements in the triangle is missing, information cannot play its role as the lifeblood of our economy and society. Libraries have been a key institution over 2000 years which provide the people and communities with rich information resources using various information technologies. In today’s highly digitalized society, people connect to one other via the Internet, come up with innovative expressions, and develop knowledge-based activities using “big data.” Regardless of how networked we become, though, we always need to understand information inclusively and in terms of these three elements to be able to build a sound and fully-functioning information-based society.
We see the mission of the Graduate School of Library, Information and Media Studies as that of researching information to enable people access to the material they need, and providing an arena for learning. In pursuing this mission, the key is not to focus exclusively either on “people and the community”, “information resources” or “information technology:” the crucial point is to study information comprehensively and inter-disciplinarily. We provide education and interdisciplinary research opportunities.
As a member of iSchools, we conduct world-class researches and provide international education programs. We have also joined CiSAP (the Consortium of iSchools Asia Pacific), and promote collaboration among Asia-Pacific information schools.