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iSGTW Feature - PRIUS: a global university for a borderless future

Feature - PRIUS: a global university for a borderless future

Susumu Date coordinates the PRIUS project, which aims to create strong leaders for next-generation distributed IT.
Image courtesy of

Grid computing is as much about people as it is about computers, and international success requires leaders who can work globally and cooperatively in their field.

This is the philosophy behind the PRIUS project, an initiative led by Osaka University, Japan, with the aim of promoting internationalization in grid education.

PRIUS, or the Pacific Rim International UniverSity, relies on hands-on practical collaboration with research institutions and universities from Pacific Rim countries, mainly through the Pacific Rim Application and Grid Middleware Assembly, better known as PRAGMA.

"PRIUS aims to develop competent leaders in integrated science," says Associate Professor Susumu Date, who is heavily involved in the project.

"We are developing an educational framework that will allow our students to learn advanced grid technologies and develop an international perspective."

The project has adopted a two-pronged approach: The first prong is the involvement of international lecturers, experts in the grid computing field who share their expertise and perspective. The second is the "academic abroad" internship program, which sees Japanese students collaborating with projects at leading universities and institutions across the Pacific Rim.

PRIUS uses the PRAGMA network to coordinate grid education activities across the entire Asia Pacific as well as Europe and the U.S.
Images courtesy of PRIUS

Growing international leaders

"The internship program aims to stimulate students in the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology by exposing them to cutting edge grid technologies and new research directions," explains Date.

"These students will be our new leaders in the borderless 21st century society."

The school is already participating in PRIME, or Pacific Rim Undergraduate Experiences, a program started by University of California San Diego in 2004 to provide students with research experiences that will also improve cyberinfrastructure through developing applications or middleware. PRIME also takes advantage of the PRAGMA framework.

Osaka University's Graduate School of Information Science and Technology was founded in 2002 with the motto "Living Locally, Growing Globally." The PRIUS project started in 2005.

- Cristy Burne, iSGTW

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