On Tuesday, July 25, a one-day business program was held at the Osaka Ibaraki Campus (OIC) for 88 adult MBA graduate students and 7 professors from the University of Sri Jayewardanepura Postgraduate Center for Business Studies in the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (organizer: Division of International Affairs, International Center at OIC).
This program has its beginnings in July 2015, when training programs for professors from the same university were held at both Ritsumeikan University and Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU). The connections made at that time led to the request to hold this program at Ritsumeikan University for graduate students.
The program began with a keynote speech and continued with lectures and graduate student presentations from both Ritsumeikan University and the University of Sri Jayewardanepura.
In his opening remarks, Assistant to the Trustees of the Ritsumeikan Trust and former Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University president Professor Monte Cassim, who is from Sri Lanka, noted that this was “possibly the largest number of people from Sri Lanka who have ever visited Ritsumeikan at once”. He then gave his keynote speech about the Japan-Sri Lanka Innovation Platform (J-SLIP), which was founded in December 2015 after the Joint Statement entitled “Deeping and Expansion of the Comprehensive Partnership between Japan and Sri Lanka” that was issued at the Japan-Sri Lanka Summit Meeting in October the same year.
From Ritsumeikan, Professor Osamu Imada of the College of Business Administration gave a lecture on the development of the Japanese automobile industry and innovations in production systems (facilitator: College of Business Administration Professor Yoichi Hara), and Alexander Guzman, a doctoral student of Technology Management and international student from Colombia, gave a presentation on risk management using artificial intelligence (facilitator: Graduate School of Technology Management Professor Atsushi Aoyama). From the University of Sri Jayewardanepura, in addition to a lecture on the past and future of the apparel industry in Sri Lanka, alternating presentations from graduate students addressed society and management in Sri Lanka before, during, and after colonization, to which similarities with management in Japan could be seen.
At the party that took place after the lectures, the leader of the delegation from the University of Sri Jayewardanepura, Dr. Bhadra Arachchige, gave a speech and emphasized that she hoped that “after returning to Sri Lanka, the students will use what they have learned from this program in Japan to contribute to the development of their home country and partnerships with other countries”.
The group from Sri Lanka had conducted visits to Japanese companies and gained insights into business administration in Japan before wrapping up their final day of training at Ritsumeikan.