Project

Pamphlet for Global COE Program for Education, Research and Development of Strategy on Disaster Mitigation of Cultural Heritage and Historic Cities. Available for download

Reports

47th Kyoto History Disaster Seminar (December 12, 2012)

Nara University Faculty of Letters Professor Masatomo UMITSU gave a presentation entitled "The flood damage of Hoi An, ancient city in central Vietnam, and its surrounding area." Hoi An is an ancient city that was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1999, and it is located right next to the entrance of the Thu Bon River, which means that the entire surrounding area is prone to flooding. Having drawn up landform classification maps, and on the results of his interviews with the local residents, the speaker presented a flood risk map, and spoke about several areas that are particularly exposed to flood damage. The speaker made many interesting points, one of which was the fact that Hoi An's old town has been given its special character by the flooding of the Thu Bon River, whose level is said to be gradually rising.

G-COE Final Symposium (December 8, 2012)

Final Symposium on Global COE Program for Education, Research and Development of Strategy on Disaster Mitigation of Cultural Heritage and Historic Cities, entitled “Protecting Cultural Heritage from Disaster for Future Generations”, was held in the Prism House at Ritsumeikan University’s Biwako-Kusatsu Campus.  The symposium, with the participation of external evaluation committee members, consists of a presentation on the overall activities during 5 years and reports on achievement in educational and research projects.    “Handbook for Disaster Mitigation of Cultural Heritage”, which is the compilation of the GCOE activities, was also introduced.

1. Opening Address:
    Kiyofumi Kawaguchi (President of Ritsumeikan University)

2. Keynote Speech:
    Tamehito Reizei (Director of the Reizei Family Foundation and Visiting
    Professor of Ritsumeikan University)

3. Objectives for the Global COE Program for Education, Research and
    Development of Strategy on Disaster Mitigation of Cultural Heritage
    and Historic Cities:
    Takeyuki Okubo (G-COE Project Leader, Professor of Ritsumeikan
    University)

4. Achievement in research activities:
1) Historic disasters and cultural assets in Kyoto
    Masafumi Yamasaki (Professor, College of Science and Engineering)
     Akihisa Yoshikoshi (Professor, College of Letters)

2) Improving environment for disaster mitigation in the areas surrounding
    cultural heritage
    Ryoichi Fukagawa (Professor, College of Science and Engineering)
    Keiichi Ogawa (Associate Professor, College of Science and Engineering)

3) Handbook for disaster mitigation of cultural heritage
    Takeyuki Okubo (Professor, College of Science and Engineering)

5. Achievement in international and educational activities:
1) Report on international joint research
    Hitoshi Taniguchi (Professor, Rits-DMUCH)
2) UNESCO Chair Programme International Training Course
    Naoko Itaya (Associate Professor, Rits-DMUCH)
3) Educational activities
    Kazuyuki Izuno (Professor, College of Science and Engineering)

6. Comment from the external evaluation committee:
    Takeshi Nakagawa (Professor, Waseda University)

7. Closing Address:
    Kenzo Toki (Director of Rits-DMUCH)















Historical Disaster Seminar (November 9, 2012)

Kyoto University Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies Assistant Professor Yuzuru KATO presented a discussion topic under the theme of "Understanding the history of earthquakes in Kyoto using the stone lanterns of the Kitano Tenmangu Shrine," after which the participants all contributed their own views in a lively debate. The Kitano Tenmangu Shrine has some partially damaged stone lanterns on which Assistant Professor Kato conducted studies based on the idea that such damage may have been caused by the Bunsei Kyoto Earthquake of 1830. Much data from the studies was offered for consideration, including findings on the distinctive features of the damage in the stone, and the dates that have been carved into the lanterns. Kyoto has not suffered any large-scale earthquakes in recent years but it was agreed that the stone lanterns of the Kitano Tenmangu Shrine have much to tell us of the distinctive features of the earthquakes that hit the city in the Bunsei era.

UNESCO Chair program on Cultural Heritage and Risk Management International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage 2012 (September 22, 2012)

The 7th UNESCO Chair on Cultural Heritage and Risk Management
International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage 2012 was held for two weeks from September 8 to 22, 2012. We invited 11 participants from Fiji, India, Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and Vietnam.

This International Training Course consisted of Lectures, Site visits, Workshops on Kyoto, as well as the case study projects from each of the participants' home countries. In addition, participants undertook site visits to Kobe and Minami-Sanriku-Cho in Miyagi prefecture which is one of the areas that were severely damaged by the Great East Japan Disaster. In Minami-Sanriku-Cho, participants were given opportunity to listen to the experiences of local residents who have been affected by this disaster, and learned actual condition and progress of reconstruction plans.

At the Open Jury session, participants were given helpful advice from Lecturers, including Mr. Joseph King from ICCROM (International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property). 

The UNESCO Chair International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage is held with the help of instructors comprising the faculty from Ritsumeikan University and other institutions, experts from international and governmental organizations, and on-site specialists, and the enthusiastic participation of trainees from various countries around the globe. This Center is committed to continually enhancing the contents of the program, and will increase efforts to promote further disaster mitigation of cultural heritage properties.











46th Kyoto History Disaster Seminar (October 19, 2012)

Kobe University Graduate School of Humanities Professor Hirotsugu FUJITA gave a presentation entitled "The uses of historical geography in reconstruction efforts after the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011: Ideas from a Kobe University faculty member who experienced the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake of 1995." Cadastral maps and land register maps made in the Meiji period (1868-1912) have been used by historical geographers for recreating landscapes that existed in the past, but Professor Fujita brought up the interesting suggestion that on the basis of his investigations of Soma City in Fukushima Prefecture they might also be useful for future-directed projects such as restoration and reconstruction. In addition to explaining the merits of such an approach, he also pointed out possible problems. Further, Professor Fujita's research is being given implementation with a Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research project, so we can look forward to seeing the results.

Kyoto Pref. disaster management drill (September 2, 2012)

We participated in Kyoto Prefecture disaster management drill, which was
held in Yodogawa River Park. We explained G-COE activities to visitors
by poster presentations.










Visit to suffered area from the East Japan earthquake (August 20-23, 2012)

We visited the suffered cultural heritage sites from the 2011 East Japan earthquake to inspect the reconstruction status; Aoba castle and Yuriage district in Sendai city, Higashi Matsushima city, Zuiganji temple and Entsuji temple in Matsushima, and Chusonji in Hiraizumi.