Press release
March 3, 2016

Evonik holds a research colloquium with the University of Tokyo at the University of Duisburg-Essen

Lectures given by Professors Takuzo Aida and Shigeo Kagami of the University of Tokyo

Prof. Takuzo Aida (Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology, School of Engineering), Prof. Kohei Tsumoto (Department of Bioengineering, School of Engineering) and Prof. Shigeo Kagami (General Manager of the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Division of University Corporate Relations) also exchanged views on the possibility of collaborative research between industry and academia with researchers and managers of Evonik.

At the research colloquium, which was given the title of “Evonik Lecture,” Prof. Aida presented his latest research results in the area of stimuli-responsive materials. And Prof. Kagami, responsible for innovation and entrepreneurship in the business relations, provided an overview of the institution and its work in the area of innovation. The two professors are active in their various fields, and were the focus of a great deal of attention; with very lively question and answer sessions taking place, making for a thriving academic conference.

“Trustful partnerships with leading universities like the University of Tokyo are important for Evonik´s innovativeness and creativity, not only regarding joint research collaborations, but also for employer branding and recruiting reasons. To facilitate this, scientific exchange with university professors as well as joint workshops with researchers from Evonik are one essential activity”, says Prof. Dr. Georg Oenbrink(Head of Innovation Networks Communications).

About the Global Proprius21 strategic partnership

Global Proprius21 is a five-year, long-term initiative between Evonik and The University of Tokyo, which began in 2014. The agreement seeks to facilitate collaboration in joint research on leading-edge materials technology development and in the education of next-generation researchers able to achieve remarkable results in global research and development activities. Evonik and The University of Tokyo are facilitating the creation of global social value in collaborative industry-academic research as well as fostering talent in research and development.

[Brief career histories of the professors]

Prof. Dr. Takuzo Aida
(Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo)
Born 1956. Doctor of Engineering. After graduating from Yokohama National University in 1979, he transferred to the School of Engineering at The University of Tokyo, and completed his doctorate program there in 1984. After working as a research assistant and then later as an associate professor, in 1996 he became a full professor, and has remained at the School of Engineering ever since. Between 2000 and 2005 he was ERATO (Exploratory Research for Advanced Technology) project leader, and from 2009 took on the additional role of Group Director at RIKEN (the Institute of Physical and Chemical Research). He was awarded a CSJ (Chemical Society of Japan) Award in 2009; the Fujihara Award in 2010; and has also received numerous other awards, including the Humboldt Prize and the Japanese Medal of Honor with Purple Ribbon.

Prof. Kohei Tsumoto
(Department of Bioengineering, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo)
Graduated from the Department of Industrial Chemistry, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Tokyo in March 1993, completing the Master’s program in industrial chemistry at the School of Engineering. After withdrawing prior to completion of the doctorate program in Chemistry and Biotechnology in July 1995, he obtained his doctorate in Engineering from The University of Tokyo in April 1997. He began working at the Graduate School of Engineering at Tohoku University as a research associate from August 1995; as a lecturer from August 2001; and then as a full professor from October 2002. He became an associate professor at the Graduate School of Frontier Sciences at The University of Tokyo in 2005, and full professor at the university’s Institute of Medical Science in 2010, before arriving at his current post (a joint position also working for both the Institute of Medical Science and the Drug Discovery Initiative), which he has held since 2013. He has received numerous awards, including the Japanese Biochemical Society Encouragement Award in 2002 and the JSPS (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) Prize in 2012.

Prof. Dr. Shigeo Kagami
(General Manager, Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Division of University Corporate Relations) Graduated from the Faculty of Commerce and Management at Hitotsubashi University in 1982, before obtaining his MBA from IMEDE (now IMD) in Switzerland, and later his PhD in Business Administration from Case Western Reserve University in the United States. After working at the Boston Consulting Group, in 1986 he participated as a founding partner in the establishment of the strategic consulting company Corporate Directions, Inc. (CDI). He later worked as a key executive officer and as a senior vice-president and office director at CDI in the US. After obtaining his degree, he joined Heidrick & Struggles—one of the world’s top executive search firms—as a partner. He became a faculty member of the Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences at The University of Tokyo in September 2002. In May 2004 he became a professor and General Manager of the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the Division of University Corporate Relations (DUCR). He was appointed to his current post in April 2013. As from January 2016, he is now also a director and vice president at the Japan Academic Society for Ventures and Entrepreneurs. He was presented with the Society’s first S. Matsuda Award in 2015.

Company information

Evonik, the creative industrial group from Germany, is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. Profitable growth and a sustained increase in the value of the company form the heart of Evonik’s corporate strategy. Its activities focus on the key megatrends health, nutrition, resource efficiency and globalization. Evonik benefits specifically from its innovative prowess and integrated technology platforms.
Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In fiscal 2014 more than
33,000 employees generated sales of around €12.9 billion and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of about €1.9 billion.


In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment.
Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.