Online workshop 2020 on Sustainable Development

List of main participants in alphabetical order

Third interdisciplinary event for the Strategic Partnership between the University of Tokyo and the Stockholm Trio.

Theme 1: The Brain and Society

Haruhiko Bito, Professor, UTokyo
Coordinator Theme 1

Dr Bito is currently Professor and Chair of the Department of Neurochemistry, and also Director of the Medical Scientist Training Program at the University of Tokyo School of Medicine. The ambition of Dr Bito’s laboratory is to go beyond just understanding the makeup of the synapses, and to tease apart the molecular, cellular and systems principles underlying activity-dependent changes in neuronal circuitry during learning and memory.

In particular, the Bito laboratory pioneered in deciphering the intricate and interactive relationship between the information encoded in the genome and the ongoing synaptic activity, and showed the critical role of CREB-Arc signaling in controlling long-term memory formation and maintenance of long-lasting changes within the brain.

Haruhiko Bito graduated from the University of Tokyo with an MD and a PhD in Biochemistry in 1993. After finishing a postdoc in Molecular and Cellular Physiology at Stanford as a HFSP long-term fellow, Dr Bito started his own laboratory in Pharmacology at Kyoto University in 1997. He expanded his research group significantly, when he moved to the Department of Neurochemistry at the University of Tokyo in 2003. He is the Leading Investigator of a National Consortium Project on “Brain information dynamics underlying multi-area interconnectivity and parallel processing”.

Maria Eriksdotter, Professor, KI

MD, PhD, is professor in geriatric medicine at Karolinska Institutet and senior consultant at Karolinska university hospital, Stockholm, Sweden. Her research focus on treatment of Alzheimer´s disease and diagnostics of dementia. She pioneered the first clinical trial in the world on implantation of encapsulated cells releasing nerve growth factor (NGF) directly to the forebrain in patients with Alzheimer´s disease. She has been involved in many clinical and epidemiological studies and has more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed journals.

Professor Eriksdotter is at present Dean of Karolinska Institutet Campus South coordinating seven departments. She previously served six years as head of the largest department at KI, the department of Neurobiology, care sciences and society (NVS) with a translational research focus on aging.  

Professor Eriksdotter is also the founder and the current chair of the Swedish national registry on dementia (SveDem,, the largest quality registry in the world. She has served as Co-Director for Swedish Brain Power, a network of national leading scientists in neurodegeneration and is scientific advisor in cognitive disorders for the Swedish national Board of Health and Welfare.

Taketoshi Mori, Professor, UTokyo

Taketoshi Mori is a Professor at Next Generation Artificial Intelligence Research Center of the University of Tokyo. He serves as a Deputy Director General of Division of University Corporate Relations with focuses on Institute of AI and Beyond and AI-related cooperative projects. He is also an Adjunct Professor of Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, Graduate Program in Gerontology, and Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies. His background is in robotics and image processing, and current research interests include human-machine interaction, action recognition, behavior modeling, monitoring systems, health status prediction, non-invasive vital sensing, elderly care systems, and nursing engineering, among others.

Professor Mori received his Doctor of Engineering (PhD) from UTokyo in 1995, when he had been a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Research Fellow for Young Scientists (DC1) for three years. After the graduation, he joined a Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology of UTokyo as a Research Associate (Assistant Professor). He became a Senior Assistant Professor (Lecturer) of the university in 1998 and then moved to the Department of Mechano-Informatics of Graduate School of Engineering in 1999. In 2000, he joined newly established graduate school named Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies of the university as a Senior Assistant Professor and started lectures as an Adjunct Instructor of Keio University concurrently. In 2002, he was appointed to an Associate Professor of Graduate School of Information Science and Technology of UTokyo. From 2010 to 2020, he worked as Principal Investigator of Department of Life Support Technology which was built based on donation from ‘molten Corporation’ in Graduate School of Medicine. There he was appointed as a Project Professor. He moved to the current position this April. He was a visiting researcher at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1997 and from 2001 to 2002.

He was a group leader of Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology (JST CREST), Strategic Promotion of Innovative Research and Development (JST S-Innovation). Information and Communication Technology Super Aging Society Promotion Project of Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) of Japan, and several projects of Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Priority Areas of Ministry of Education (MEXT). He is a board member of Society for Nursing Science and Engineering, and an academic councilor of both the Japanese Society for Wellbeing Science and Assistive Technology, and the Society of Life Support Engineering.

Jonas Olofsson, Professor, SU

Jonas Olofsson is Professor at the Department of Psychology, Stockholm University. He received his M.Sc. in Cognitive Science in 2003 from Umeå University, where he also received his PhD in Psychology in 2008. He conducted research at The Scripps Research Institute, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and New York University Langone Medical School. He was appointed Docent of Psychology at Stockholm University in 2009 and Professor in 2019.

Prof. Olofsson’s research focuses on the sense of smell, olfaction, and its perceptual, affective and cognitive aspects. By systematically comparing olfaction to ”higher” senses such as vision, he investigates what makes olfaction different. A main line of research concerns how olfactory loss might provide an early marker for neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. Prof. Olofssons research is characterized by behavioral experimentation, complemented by neurology and neuroscience approaches.

Prof. Olofsson is currently a Wallenberg Academy Fellow, a member of the Swedish National Academy for Psychological Sciences, and a board member of the Swedish Cognitive Science Society. He is a former board member of the Young Academy of Sweden and a former fellow of the Pro Futura Sciencia programme. He has received research awards from the Swedish National Academy for Psychological Sciences and the Behavior Genetics Association. His research is funded by the Swedish Research Council, The Swedish Foundation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation and the Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation.

Atsunobu Suzuki, Associate Professor, UTokyo

Atsunobu Suzuki is an associate professor of Department of Psychology, Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, The University of Tokyo. He has been recognized as one of The University of Tokyo Excellent Young Researchers since 2019.
Suzuki is an experimental psychologist. His research interest is focused on social-affective cognitive processes such as emotion perception from faces, learning and reasoning about others’ characters, and affect-based decision making. He is also interested in the effects of aging on these mental processes. His primary research method is behavioral experimentation with healthy adults, and he has also been involved in neuroimaging and clinical research.
After earning his Ph.D. at Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, UTokyo, Suzuki went to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a postdoctoral fellow of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. Having continued his postdoctoral research at Endowed Department of Gerontology, UTokyo, he joined Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Nagoya University, as an assistant professor. After becoming an associate professor there, he has moved to Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, UTokyo, in 2017. He has research collaborators in Taiwan, U.K., and U.S.

Taisuke Tomita, Professor, UTokyo

Tomita is a Professor in Laboratory of Neuropathology and Neuroscience, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of the University of Tokyo (UTokyo), whose research field interests include neurology, psychiatry, cell biology, neuroscience, and molecular biology. Prof. Tomita has received numerous honors and awards for his work, including Erwin von Balz prize in 2011, Basic Research award from the Japan Society for Dementia Research in 2013, a NAGASE Science and Technology Foundation Award in 2015 as well as SHIMAZDU young researcher award in 2018. Additionally, Prof. Tomita is a member of several professional bodies such as The American Society for Biochemical and Molecular Biology (ASBMB), the Japan Society for Dementia Research (where he has been a director from 2017), International Proteolysis Society (Asian council from 2016 to 2019) and the Pharmaceutical Society of Japan (PSJ).

Prof. Tomita received his B.S. (1995), M.S. (1997), and Ph.D. (2000) in Pharmaceutical Science from UTokyo, and has been a Visiting Scientist at Washington University in St. Louis where he conducted research on Notch biology under a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) postdoctoral fellowship for research abroad (2004-2005). He first held the position of Instructor at the Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, UTokyo (1997-2003), then becoming an Assistant Professor (2003-2006), Associate Professor (2006-2014), and was appointed to his current position of Professor in 2014. He is also appointed to an Adjunct Professor in Laboratory of Brain and Neurological Disorders, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Japan (from 2017).

Theme 2: Biomaterials

2.1 Nanocellulose

Varvara Apostolopoulou-Kalkavoura, Stockholm University (SU)

Varvara Apostolopoulou-Kalkavoura is a last year PhD candidate at Stockholm University (SU) in Sweden, under the supervision of Prof. Lennart Bergström, working on thermal and moisture transport within thermal insulation materials based on cellulose nanomaterials. Her research aims to understand how the different climatic conditions and the foam processing influence the heat transfer within nanostructured cellulosic porous materials to tailor high-performance thermal insulation materials. Her research interests include cellulose and nanocellulose materials processing and characterization, sustainable materials processing, transport phenomena and thermal management. During her PhD, Varvara was involved in projects funded by the Swedish Energy Agency – Energimyndigheten and the Wallenberg Wood Science Center (WWSC) and she has been awarded several prizes such as the 1st place Best Poster Award, at the WWSC workshop on 2019/11/27-29.
She was born in Athens and she has two M.Sc., one within Chemical Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) in Greece and one within Sustainable Technology from Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (KTH) in Sweden. She has previously worked at the IVL Svenska Miljöinstitutet in collaboration with Stockholm Vatten in the project investigating the possibility to retrofit the wastewater treatment plant of Henriksdal in Stockholm into a Membrane Bioreactor (MBR). Additionally, she has research experience in the sectors of drinking water and wastewater treatment using particularly polymeric membranes.
In parallel with her research activities as PhD student, Varvara campaigned as a candidate for the European Parliament. Currently, she serves as a board member in the Committee for Research and Innovation of the Movement for Change – Kinima Allagis party in Greece.

Tobias Benselfelt, Post-Doc, KTH

Dr. Benselfelt has a master of science degree in bioengineering from Linköping University focusing on materials and devices in medicine. He then joined KTH and the Wallenberg wood science centre to pursue a PhD focusing on the design of materials from nanocellulose. He is now a Postdoc at KTH within the digital cellulose center (DCC) working with the company Stora Enso AB on the subject of electroactive membranes. In the near future he will go to NTU in Singapore as a Wallenberg postdoctoral scholar for two years to work on nanocellulose hydrogels for bioelectronics. His main scientific interests are fundamental colloid and surface science, and physical chemistry beyond the traditional mean field theories and into the discreteness of nanoscience.

Lars Berglund, Professor, KTH

Berglund is professor of Wood and Wood Composites at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. He has been a visiting researcher at Stanford University, Cornell University and Kyoto University. His research interest is in nanostructured composite materials; primarily those based on cellulose. An important challenge is transparent cellulosic nanomaterials, which also can serve as load-bearing engineering materials. Professor Berglund has published close to 300 journal papers, obtained around 10 patents, examined more than 20 PhD-candidates and is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences. He holds an ERC Advanced Grant on Nanotechnologies for Transparent Wood. He was a “highly cited” author on Web of Science 2018, has more than 18.000 citations and an H-index of 65.

Göksu Cinar Ciftci, Researcher, KTH

Göksu Cinar Ciftci received her PhD in Materials Science and Nanotechnology in 2016. During her PhD, she contributed to the design and synthesis of advanced functional polymeric biomaterials that mimic the structure and function of natural biomacromolecules through the programmable self-assembly and hybrid/composite approaches for biomedical applications. Currently, she is a researcher at the Division of Fibre Technology, KTH, and working on advanced characterizations of nanocellulose to determine structure-function relations of multifunctional nanocellulose based materials for different applications. She also contributes to biomimetic eco-friendly functionalizations of cellulose fibers and fibrils for industrial applications.

Shuji Fujisawa, Assistant Professor, UTokyo

Prior to his current appointment, he was a researcher at Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute in Tsukuba. He received his Master’s degree (2011) and PhD (2014) in the Department of Biomaterial Sciences at the University of Tokyo. He has been working on surface engineering of cellulose nanofibrils (CNFs) towards high functional polymer nanocomposite materials. Recent work has focused on developing CNF/polymer nanocomposites via Pickering emulsion polymerization.

Kayoko Kobayashi, Assistant Professor, Kyoto University

Dr. Kayoko Kobayashi is an Assistant Professor at Division of Forest and Biomaterials Science of Kyoto University. Her main research interests are solid-state structure of wood and other biomaterials and their relationships with physical properties.

She earned her PhD from the University of Tokyo in 2014 for her study on crystal structure of hydrated polysaccharides. She worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Kyoto University, where she focused on image processing and machine learning applying to wood anatomy. Before being appointed to her current position, she returned to the University of Tokyo as a Project Assistant Professor.

Takashi Kodama, Res. Assoc. Prof, UTokyo

Dr. Takashi Kodama received the B.S. (2001), M.S. (2003), and Ph.D. (2006) degrees in Biomolecular Engineering at Tokyo Institute of Technology. He studied about nanoscale mechanical and optical properties of individual bionanomaterials using a scanning probe microscope. He worked as a post-doc (2006-2010) and research associate (2010-2015) with Prof. Kenneth Goodson studying electro-thermal transport in nanomaterials using a microfabricated device. He is working in mechanical engineering department of the University of Tokyo as a research associate professor. His current research interest is thermal conduction phenomena in nanoscale and macroscale materials for thermal engineering applications.

Junji Nemoto, Dr, Hokuetsu Corporation

Dr. Nemoto is a Research Unit Leader at a Pulp & Paper company, Hokuetsu Corporation. He obtained his PhD from the University of Tokyo under the supervision of Profs. Isogai and Saito for his study on preparing nanocellulose porous materials. He spent 12-years work of developing nanocellulose porous materials such as aerogels and air filters. Recently he has focused on unique and traditional all-cellulose materials called vulcanized fibers which were composed of nano and micro-cellulose fibers. Nemoto was awarded Japan TAPPI Prizes in 2016 and 2018 for his academic articles about the nanocellulose air filters and the all-cellulose materials.

Tsuguyuki Saito, Associate Professor, UTokyo
Coordinator for Theme 2.1

Tsuguyuki Saito is an Associate Professor at the Department of Biomaterial Sciences, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the University of Tokyo. He graduated from the University of Tokyo in 2003, and obtained a PhD from the same university in 2008 for his study on TEMPO-oxidation of cellulosic fibers. He has further developed this oxidation as a tool to produce cellulose nanofibers (CNF) from wood pulp in an energy-efficient way. For his ground-breaking discovery on CNF production, he was awarded the Marcus Wallenberg Prize by the Marcus Wallenberg Foundation in 2015, and the JSPS Prize by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science in 2019. As of August 2020 the sum of times cited for his publications is approximately 13,000 citations, and his h-index is 51 (Web of Science). He also worked as a visiting scientist with Prof. Lars A. Berglund at the Wallenberg Wood Science Center, KTH (2012-2013).

He is now leading a Japan Science and Technology Agency’s JST-Mirai Project for achieving the efficiency and additional values in CNF-based materials by exploiting the CNF potential, where three universities and four industrial companies participate.

Junichiro Shiomi, Professor, UTokyo
Coordinator for Theme 2.1

Junichiro Shiomi is Professor in Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering, the University of Tokyo (UTokyo). He received B.E. (1999) from Tohoku University, and Ph. D. (2004) from Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Sweden. Leading the Thermal Energy Engineering Lab, he has been pursuing research to advance thermal management, waste heat recovery, and energy harvesting technologies based on nano-to-macro innovation in materials, structures, and systems.

Prof. Shiomi has been leading several projects including Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology (JST-CREST), Precursory Research for Embryonic Science and Technology (JST-PRESTO), and New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) projects. He is Fellow of Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers and serves as associate editors of Applied Physics Express, Japanese Journal of Applied Physics, and Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers.

He is a recipient of the Zeldovich Medal from the Committee on Space Research, the Young Scientists’ Prize, the Commendation for Science and Technology by the Minister of Educational, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and the Academic award of Heat Transfer Society of Japan. He has been coordinators of the EU/Japan Interdisciplinary Global Mechanical Engineering Education (IGM) program, the Global Mechanical Engineer (GME) program between UTokyo and KTH, EPFL and Rice University, the Top Global University Project between UTokyo and Stockholm Universities.

Tom Willhammar, Researcher, SU

Wilhammar is a researcher the Department of Materials and Environmental Chemistry (MMK) at Stockholm University. He received a Master of Science in Chemical Engineering with focus on Materials and Polymer Chemistry from Lund University in 2008. His PhD was earned from Stockholm University in 2013 in the field of Structural Chemistry. After a Postdoc with Prof. Sara Bals at University of Antwerp, Belgium, he returned to Stockholm University where he is now working as a researcher.

His research circles around electron microscopy, electron diffraction and its applications to the structural characterization of materials. Keys to an increased understanding of the properties of new materials are embedded in their structures, ranging from the mesoscale down to the atomic level. Electron microscopy provides important tools to reveal such information. Willhammar main research interest comprises methods such as 3D electron diffraction, scanning electron diffraction as well as imaging from the mesoscale down to the atomic scale. He works on a wide range of material systems with recent focus on wood and cellulose-based materials as well as nanoporous materials (eg. zeolites and MOFs).

Lars Wågberg, Professor, KTH

Lars Wågberg is professor in Department of Fibre Technology at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden, since 2002. The focus of his and his teams efforts has been to quantify the molecular interactions at model surfaces of cellulose, lignin and hemicellulose in order to allow for the preparation of new materials from these components using a bottom-up design with different procedures but with a preference Layer-by-Layer selfassembly. A lot of the efforts have been on characterizing cellulose nanofibrils to incorporate these materials in new, interactive materials where the properties of this renewable and biodegradable nanomaterial is utilized.

2.2 Nanobiomaterials

Horacio Cabral, Associate Professor, UTokyo

Dr. Cabral received his Ph.D. in Materials Engineering from The University of Tokyo in 2007 under the supervision of Prof. Kazunori Kataoka. Dr. Cabral was an Assistant Professor at the Center for Disease Biology and Integrative Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, until 2010, when he joined the Department of Bioengineering of The University of Tokyo as a Lecturer. In 2014, he was promoted to his current position.

Dr. Cabral’s major research interests relate to the development of nanomedicines for diagnosis and therapy, particularly systems directed to intractable cancers. He has made major influential achievements in the development of translatable polymeric nanocarriers. Particularly, his polymeric micelles targeting anticancer drugs to tumours have proceeded into human clinical studies, improving patients’ survival and reducing side effects. Moreover, he has accomplished seminal contributions in the understanding of the effect of nanocarrier design on activity, particularly through intratumoral and intracellular navigation. He has published more than 100 articles in refereed journals, including Nature Nanotechnology, Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology, Science Translational Medicine, PNAS, etc., and he is inventor of more than 30 patents.

Dr. Cabral has been recipient of several awards, such as the Asahi Glass Foundation and the Mochida Memorial Foundation for Medical and Pharmaceutical Research. He currently serves on the editorial board of Science and Technology of Advanced Materials, Nanomaterials and the advisory board of Macromolecular Bioscience.

Serhiy Dekhtyar, Assistant Professor, KI

Serhiy Dekhtyar is an Assistant Professor at the Aging Research Center, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society (NVS) at Karolinska Institutet. His research is concerned with uncovering compensatory factors, activities, and experiences that could allow older adults to preserve cognitive and physical health in the face of depleting homeostasis associated with pathological processes during aging. A life course approach is central to this undertaking, as it can indicate life stages at which protective influences of specific factors are especially pronounced, allowing interventions to be implemented at a time in individuals’ lives when they have the best chance of succeeding.

Ulrica Edlund, Professor, KTH

Ulrica Edlund, Professor of Polymer Technology at Fibre and Polymer Technology, KTH, was rewarded a Ph.D. in Polymer Technology in 2000 followed by a post-doctoral fellowship in organic chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.

Currently, she is affiliated with KTH at Fibre and Polymer Technology. Her expertise comprises synthesis, surface modification, characterization and materials design of polymers, with special focus on the development of functional and advanced formulations and materials from renewable resources.

She has contributed to inventing and developing a new, non-destructive, one-step technique for the covalent surface modification of biomaterials. She is very active in the design of renewable functional materials for a sustainable future from terrestrial and marine biomass including forestry biomass, algae and agricultural residues. She is director of MistraTerraClean, a large research program targeting smart materials for clean air and water. Inventions include renewable films, coatings, microspheres, and hydrogel formulations based on more or less purified non-cellulosic oligo- and polysaccharide rich fractions generated in commercial wood processing operations such as pulping.

Edlund has received several awards, including the Nobel Foundation scholarship, and was in 2002 selected as one of the “outstanding young European scientists forming the future European network” by the European Polymer Federation. Ulrica was in 2010 awarded KTHs Teaching Award for outstanding efforts in undergraduate education and was elected Teacher-of-the-year in 2017 by the Chemistry student chapter. Ulrica is an elected member of IVA, Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, division IV (Chemical Engineering). Currently acting Vice chair of division IV.

Mahiar Max Hamedi, Assistant Professor, KTH

Mahiar Max Hamedi is an Ass. Prof. at the School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health at KTH. In 2013-2016 he worked as a postdoc with Prof. George M. Whitesides at Harvard University and returned to KTH as a group leader. His research involves fundamental studies and development of new materials and devices. He is currently working with next generation energy storage devices and with technologies for democratization of molecular diagnostics for global health. His research has been highlighted by many news organizations including BBC, Science, Nature, CNN, MIT tech. review, and Wired. He is also the co-founder of several companies, and managing director of a private investment fund that aims at solving important societal problems through science, technology, and education.

Anna Herland, Associate Professor, KTH

Anna Herland is Associate Professor at the Division of Micro and Nanotechnology at the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at KTH and is affiliated to AIMES, Center of the Advancement of Integrated Medical and Engineering Sciences, Karolinska Institutet. Herland is also the deputy director of the KTH Life Science Platform.
Anna Herland defended her PhD-thesis in Biomolecular and Organic Electronics at Linköping University  in 2007. After a shorter period in Life Science Industry, Herland started a postdoctoral fellowship at Karolinska Institutet in stem cell engineering and in vitro modelling. 2013-2016, she went for a research period to Wyss Institute Harvard University and was leading their development of neural in vitro models. Herland started an Assistant Professor position in late 2016 after receiving a Wallenberg Academy Fellow Grant and a KTH Tenure track position.
Herland’s research group at KTH and KI is highly interdisciplinary with competences in the biomedical disciplines stem cell science and neuroscience as well as science disciplines of sensor, device and material development. The majority of the groups focus on in vitro neural models creating microphysiological models that mimics specific functions. Stem cell engineering, biomaterial evaluation for 3D culture, microfluidic and sensor development are central to this research. Another research direction in the group developing new organic electronic material and devices for improved interfaces to living cells and tissue as well as nanoscale sensing methods. Herland has pioneered the field of microphysiological systems and has published >45 peer-reviewed journal publications and reviews with >3000 citations.

Taichi Ito, Professor, UTokyo

Ito obtained his PhD in chemical engineering and membrane separation from the University of Tokyo in 2004. He was an associate professor of Center for Disease Biology and Integrative Medicine of Medical School from 2009 to 2020. He was concurrently an associate professor of Department of Chemical System Engineering and Department of Bioengineering of Engineering School. His research interests are the biomaterials such as hydrogels and particles. Besides, their applications to anti-peritoneal adhesion barriers, hemostats, scaffolds for tissue engineering, and drug delivery were studied. 

Onur Parlak, Post-Doc, Karolinska Institutet

Parlak earned his PhD in Bioelectronics from Linköping University in 2015. He then received Wallenberg Fellowship and joined Alberto Salleo’s Lab at Stanford University for postdoctoral research focusing on wearable bioelectronics. Subsequently, he turned back to Sweden and joined the Karolinska Institutet to translate his engineering skills in medical settings. Since 2019, he is leading biosensor and bioelectronic research in newly established AIMES – Centre for the Advancement of Integrated Medical and Engineering Science in Karolinska Institutet where he specializes in personalized diagnostics and digital medicine.

Agneta Richter-Dahlfors, Professor, KI –
Coordinator for Theme 2.2 Nanobiomaterials

Richter-Dahlfors is the director of AIMES – Center for Integrated Medical and Engineering Sciences, an interdisciplinary research center shared between the Karolinska Institutet (KI) and KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm (KTH), Sweden. Richter-Dahlfors’ multidisciplinary competence is witnessed from her holding a Professor position in Cellular Microbiology at KI, and in Chemistry and Biotechnology at KTH. She heads a multidisciplinary research group which aims to bridge across medicine and engineering by innovating and publishing in both fields. Her broad research interest includes bacterial infection, tissue microbiology, organic bioelectronics, opto-electronic sensors for bacterial detection, and anti-fouling surface coatings to mention a few. Richter-Dahlfors is co-inventor on several patents, and is engaged in entrepreneurial activities as founder and co-founder of companies in the biotech and med-tech field.

Takamasa Sakai, Professor, UTokyo

Takamasa Sakai received his BS (2002), MS (2004), and PhD (2007) degrees from The University of Tokyo under the supervision of Professor Ryo Yoshida. His doctoral study was on self-oscillating polymers and gels using Belousov-Zhabotinsty reaction. In 2007-2009, he became a Project Assistant Professor in CNBI in 2007-2009, and in CMSI in 2009-2010 to work on development of homogeneous hydrogels with Professor Ungil Chung. From 2011 to 2015, he worked as an Assistant Professor at Department of Bioengineering in the University of Tokyo. In April 2015, he was promoted to Associate Professor at the same department. He received Award for Encouragements of Research in Polymer Science from The Society of Polymer Science, Japan in 2012 and the Young Scientists’ Prize from the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan in 2017. He is currently an advisory board member of Soft Matter. His current research interests include physics of polymer gels and biomedical application of hydrogels.

Yasuyuki Sakai, Professor, UTokyo

Yasuyuki SAKAI is a professor at Department of Chemical System Engineering and collaborative professor at Department of Bioengineering, Graduate School of Engineering, University of Tokyo. He received Ph. Department of Chemical Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering, University of Tokyo.
Current research topics are large-scale propagation/differentiation of stem cells, engineering of implantable 3D tissues/organs and development of mirophysiological systems for drugs and industrial/environmental chemicals. He has been placing particular importance on realization of good mass transfers and 3D organization of cells in vitro.
During his research carrier, Prof. Sakai has published over 200 original publications and received several scientific awards such as young investigator award of Society of Chemical Engineers, Japan, publication awards of Society for Bioscience and Bioengineering, Japan and JSAAE. He became an AIMBE fellow as of 2012. He is a guest professor at Technological University of Compienge, France. He is currently serving as the president of JSAAE and as the chair, Division of Biotechnology, Society for Chemical Engineers, Japan. He is working as an editorial board member of Biofabrication, Bio-Design and Manufacturing and Frontiers in Toxicology.

Yuji Teramura, Project Associate Professor, UTokyo

Yuji Teramura is a project Associate Professor of Department of  Bioengineering in the University of Tokyo, Japan and also an Associate Professor (Docent) at Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology (IGP) in Uppsala University. Currently He is a guest Professor of IGP in Uppsala University. He is a researcher with over 10 years of experience in an interdisciplinary research area of engineering and medicine since he received Ph.D. from Waseda University in 2004. With his original research background in polymer chemistry, he has contributed to biomedical engineering research projects such as bioartificial blood and bioartificial pancreas throughout his career. He has published more than 100 scientific papers. Since 2006 he worked at Kyoto University as an Assistant Professor at Institute for Frontier Medical Sciences together with Prof Hiroo Iwata and with a grant from Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS), he worked at IGP of Uppsala University as a visiting researcher with Prof. Bo Nilsson since May 2010. Then, he was recruited to join the ‘StemTherapy’ project together with Prof Jöns Hilborn and Prof. Bo Nilsson. He got a project professor position from the Department of Bioengineering in the University of Tokyo in 2013. He became an Associate Professor (Docent) at IGP in Uppsala University since 2017, and also a guest Professor since 2019.

Theme 3: Education for Sustainable Development

Serhiy Dekhtyar, Assistant Professor, KI

Serhiy Dekhtyar is an Assistant Professor at the Aging Research Center, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society (NVS) at Karolinska Institutet. His research is concerned with uncovering compensatory factors, activities, and experiences that could allow older adults to preserve cognitive and physical health in the face of depleting homeostasis associated with pathological processes during aging. A life course approach is central to this undertaking, as it can indicate life stages at which protective influences of specific factors are especially pronounced, allowing interventions to be implemented at a time in individuals’ lives when they have the best chance of succeeding.

Katsuya Iijima, Professor, UTokyo

Katsuya Iijima is a Professor at Institute of Gerontology, The University of Tokyo. His main research interests are: Geriatric medicine (especially, Cardiovascular medicine), Gerontology, prevention of frailty due to sarcopenia and Patient-centered Home medical care.

He is a member of The Japanese Society of Internal Medicine, Japanese Circulation Society, The Japan Geriatrics Society, The Japan Atherosclerosis Society, The Japanese Society of Hypertension, Japanese Society of Anti-Aging Medicine, Japanese Mibyo System Society Japan, Society for Dementia Research, Japan Society for Biomedical Gerontology, The Japanese Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, Japan Society of Medical Education and Japanese Society of Public Health.

Iijima received his M.D. (1990) from Jikei Medical University and Ph.D. (2001) from the University of Tokyo. He has also studied at Stanford University (CA, USA) 2002-2004 doing basic research as Research Fellow of Cardiovascular Medicine. He first held position of Fellow in Geriatric Medicine at UTokyo Hospital (1997-2001), then became Instructor (2001-2002, 2005-2006), Assistant Professor (2006-2011), Associate Professor (2011-2016) and was appointed to his current position of Professor in 2016. He has also been a member in The Japan’s Plan for Dynamic Engagement for All Citizens since 2015.

Yuto Kitamura, Associate Professor, UTokyo
Coordinator for Theme 3

Yuto Kitamura is Associate Professor at Graduate School of Education, The University of Tokyo. He received his Ph.D. in Education from UCLA. He has worked at UNESCO in Paris and taught at Nagoya University and Sophia University. He was the Fulbright Scholar at the George Washington University. He is currently Member of the Board of Education at Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Associate Member of the Science Council of Japan, and Special Advisor to the Rector at Royal University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia. He is specialized in comparative education and has been conducting his researches extensively on education policy of developing countries, particularly in Southeast Asia. He was awarded the JSPS Prize in 2018, one of the highest honors for young scholars in Japan.

Dr Maria von Knorring, KI

Dr Maria von Knorring is senior researcher and the research leader of the group Leadership in Healthcare and Academia in Department of Learning, Informatics, Management and Ethics (LIME) at Karolinska Institutet. She is also Departmental Director of Education at LIME and member of the project team in the project One KI for Sustainable Development – structured and coherent work with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Her research interest focuses on professional groups and organizational culture in healthcare and academic settings. She is member of the Pedagogical Academy at KI.

Małgorzata Malec Rawiński, Senior lecturer, SU

Małgorzata Malec Rawiński is a senior lecturer in Education at Stockholm University, Department of Education. She has worked (2006-2017) at the University of Wrocław, Poland. Her research interests are adult education, older adults learning – social and critical educational gerontology, lifelong learning, biographical approach, local community activation, education of social exclusion-risk adults. In recent years, her interest and research work started to focus on migration in socio-cultural and educational perspectives, the old age, ageing and learning in life-long perspective, problems and needs of older people, learning while being old, education of aging keeping the orientation on biographical learning. A recent project she has worked on is Old Guys say Yes to Community. In this project, we focus on the learning of older men in different communities in four countries: Slovenia, Estonia, Poland and Portugal.

Dr Anders Rosén, KTH

Associate professor in Naval Architecture at the KTH Department of Engineering Mechanics.Pedagogic developer at the KTH Department of Learning. Deputy director of the KTH Global Development Hub. Current strong focus on Engineering Education for Sustainable Development. Previous contacts with Japan has for example involved teaching at University of Tokyo and a research internship at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Nagasaki.

Shu-Nu Chang Rundgren, Professor, SU

Chang Rundgren is a Professor of Didactics and the research leader of the group Educational Research in Citizenship Competences (ERiCC) in Department of Education at Stockholm University. She has been Professor of Science Education (2011-2015) at Karlstad University and also a Professor II (2018-2020) in Department of Primary and Secondary Teacher Education at Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet) in Norway. In order to develop responsible citizenship for sustainability, enhancing teacher professional knowledge and training on teaching and assessing students’ key competences has been her research interests.

Joint Sessions on the short- and long term effects of COVID-19

Joakim Edsjö, Chair, Education Committee for Faculty of Sciences

Joakim Edsjö is since 2011 a Professor in theoretical physics at the Department of Physics, Stockholm University. His research is in theoretical astroparticle physics, with focus on dark matter in the Universe. He is also very interested in educational questions and has developed a flipped classroom course at the university. He has been director of studies at the Department of Physics (2011-2016) and has since 2016 been the chair of the undergraduate education committee at the Faculty of Science, Stockholm University. He has also been a member of the board of the Faculty and its executive board since 2016. He is also a member of several (and chairing some) university-wide groups regarding educational questions (course evaluations, examinations, advancement of teaching)

Yuto Kitamura, Associate Professor, UTokyo

Yuto Kitamura is Associate Professor at Graduate School of Education, The University of Tokyo. He received his Ph.D. in Education from UCLA. He has worked at UNESCO in Paris and taught at Nagoya University and Sophia University. He was the Fulbright Scholar at the George Washington University. He is currently Member of the Board of Education at Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Associate Member of the Science Council of Japan, and Special Advisor to the Rector at Royal University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia. He is specialized in comparative education and has been conducting his researches extensively on education policy of developing countries, particularly in Southeast Asia. He was awarded the JSPS Prize in 2018, one of the highest honors for young scholars in Japan.

Torkel Klingberg, Professor, KI

Torkel Klingberg, MD, PhD, is Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Karolinska Institutet in the Department of Neuroscience. His work on child brain development and cognitive training is at the international front line. He led the original studies demonstrating that working memory can be improved by training. Dr. Klingberg leads a major Swedish project on child development, lectures regularly at international conferences, is the recipient of several prizes, and serves as a member of the Nobel Assembly. He is also the author of the book: “The Overflowing Brain: Information Overload and the Limits of Working Memory”

Per Lundqvist, Professor, KTH

Per Lundqvist is appointed professor in Energy Technology at KTH, co-chairing the division of Applied Thermodynamics and refrigeration. Lundqvist received his PhD in Energy Technology in 1993 on a thesis on Stirling cycle heat pumps and refrigerators. Lundqvist’s research and teaching covers a broad range of topics such as thermodynamic cycles, Energy systems analysis and modelling, energy management, eco-city planning, heat pump technology, alternative refrigerants, solar cooling, organic rankine cycles and so on.

Lundqvist has served as vice dean for education of the School of Industrial Engineering and Management at KTH for several years. PL is a Member of the Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences.

Matti Nikkola, Professor, KI

Present activities: Head of Education in Cell and Molecular Biology at Karolinska Institutet (KI), Stockholm Sweden, 2002 – (Medicine and Biomedicine programs), Director of Doctoral Studies in Cell and molecular biology and Head of Doctoral course programme at Karolinska Institutet 2003-.
Nikkola is Coordinator of, Nordic/national consortium for Laboratory Animal Science Education and Training from 2012 and ongoing, and Coordinator of multiple international collaborations in doctoral education and training

Awards: Pedagogic prize of Karolinska Institutet 2009, Pedagogic prize of Biomedicine program at Karolinska Institutet,  2006, Pedagogic prize of Uppsala University, 1999

Taikan Oki, Professor, UTokyo

Prof. Oki is a Special Adviser to the President and a professor at Department of Civil Engineering, Graduate School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo. He is also affiliated as the Senior Vice-Rector of the United Nations University and an Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Prof. Oki received his Ph.D at The University of Tokyo in 1993.
His most important and wide-reaching work has been in demonstrating the connections between the hydrologic cycle, renewable water resources, the global economy, and sustainability culminating in his 2006 paper in Science. Prof. Oki has demonstrated the inequitable connections between local hydrologic sustainability, climate, and macroscale socioeconomic pressures. As a citizen of an island nation highly dependent on the import of natural resources and foodstuffs, he has demonstrated clearly how the international exchange of “virtual water”, that needed to produce agricultural and other commodities traded on the global market, can exacerbate vulnerabilities in water-poor regions. Early in his career Prof. Oki developed a global river routing dataset for climate applications, Total Runoff Integrating Pathways (TRIP), which continues to be widely used around the world to study large-scale hydrology and the water cycle. It is a part of many climate models including those used in assessments by the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC). Professor Oki was one of the coordinating lead authors for Chapter 3 “Freshwater Resources” of the IPCC WGII AR5, and a review editor for Chapter 8 “Poverty, Livelihoods and Sustainable Development” of IPCC WGII AR6. He has been the recipient of numerous awards such as the Biwako Prize for Ecology in 2011, and the Japan Academy Medal in 2008. He is the first Japanese AGU Fellow in its Hydrology Section with quotes “For interdisciplinary research and leadership bridging hydrology, climate, and sustainability through numerical modeling and scientific analysis.

Naoto Sekimura, Professor and Vice President, UTokyo

Naoto Sekimurais a Professor at the Dept. of Nuclear Engineering and Management, Graduate School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo (UTokyo). Additionally, he serves as a Vice-President of UTokyo (2017-present) with focuses on international affairs and Japanese language education for international students. His research interests include: safety engineering and maintenance engineering for nuclear power plants, systems engineering for complex systems, ageing management of light water reactors, effects of radiation in solid materials and nuclear materials, nuclear fuels engineering, and codes and standards for nuclear systems, amongst others.

Prof. Sekimura received his Doctor of Engineering from UTokyo in 1986, having held a research position at the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) in 1985. He joined UTokyo’s faculty as a Lecturer in the Dept. of Nuclear Engineering in 1987, and has held a number of faculty positions in the institution since. After being appointed to the position of Professor in the Dept. of Quantum Engineering and Systems Science in 2000, he became a Professor of the Dept. of Nuclear Engineering and Management in 2008, followed by a position as Vice Dean of the Graduate School of Engineering (2010-2012). He was also a member of the Education and Research Council of UTokyo from 2010 to 2013.

Prior to his current role as Vice-President of the University, Prof. Sekimura has been involved with various international matters at UTokyo, when he served as the Director of the IIIEE (2012-2014). He has worked as the Deputy Director for the Global Campus Promotion Office (2014-2015), and served as a Special Advisor to the President in his capacity as a Deputy Director General, Division of International Affairs (2015-2017).