Message from Ono Hiroya: Vice President of Reitaku University

Role played by knowledge will change decisively

“We are currently facing an era when the role played by knowledge will change decisively. Unrestricted access to the internet is allowing explosive expansion in the world of knowledge available to users. This world needs technologies that enrich everyday life, and it needs rich human resources with a personal sense of social responsibility.”

That perspective illustrates the brilliance of the Vice President of Reitaku University and Professor of Engineering, Hiroya Ono, as he guides his students. With the wisdom he has accumulated along his academic path, he uses numbers to easily unravel a variety of societal problems that regular people don't even see. Professor Ono is well known as a pioneer in the hot research fields of Environmental Economics and Environmental Accounting.

Environmental Economics

For example, imagine the suburban neighborhoods that surround Tokyo. Hundreds of thousands of people who work downtown get single-family houses, raise children, grow their families, and get old. The scenery looks the same as anywhere else, but it is quite a large undertaking to build these neighborhoods out of nothing, make them economically sustainable, and maintain a living environment that provides a comfortable and satisfying lifestyle. One example is the waste treatment issue. For sanitation reasons, trash cannot be disposed of too close, but it must be gathered and processed quickly, so the waste treatment plant cannot be built too far away. And when the local government wants to build one, the location of the plant obviously becomes an issue.

This is where Environmental Economics would be effectively utilized. The waste management facility (Nanbu Clean Center) of Kashiwa City, home to Reitaku University's broad campus, is a model example. Professor Ono, who worked at the National Institute for Environmental Studies before Reitaku University, contributed plans to use the energy generated by the waste management facility in the community that would host the plant to run a park with multi-purpose facilities like a heated pool, and a road network with wide sidewalks to allow a safe environment for garbage trucks to come and go. That is to say, that Kashiwa City is an ideal realization of an ecological residential environment that accounts for the cost benefits and cost effectiveness of location, solvable mathematically according to Professor Ono's ideas.

“There are so many stakeholders, these environmental problems look impossible to solve at first glance. But we examine each issue in detail, and convert them into economic values when possible, and apply environmental economics to create a new environment that can satisfy all of the stakeholders. Environmental economics is an academic field that covers an extremely large range of issues including energy resources. I would say it's a field that is very rewarding.”

Inclusive Wellness

Hiroya Ono was born in Hyogo Prefecture in 1954, graduated from the Department of Physics at The University of Tokyo and completed his Master's of Particle Physics at the Graduate School of Science at The University of Tokyo. After finishing the Doctor's program in three years, he continued his studies in the graduate school of The Tokyo Institute of Technology and acquired a Ph.D in Social Engineering. While Professor Ono he was working on Physics at the elite University of Tokyo, he learned about Japan’s experience with two periods of oil shock. A society that was troubled by a scarcity of oil made him think deeply. “I was interested in economics... I wanted to contribute.” This thought led him to redirect his whole life towards the new field of Environmental Economics.

“Japan experienced a rapid economic growth, but it also managed to address the related environmental problems at the same time. There are only a few countries in the world that have accumulated such valuable experiences. We need to think positively about how to resolve these problems. Here at Reitaku University, we're thinking about the upcoming needs of East Asia and Southeast Asia, we’re researching the knowledge to face these issues and the social perspective to solve them fairly, and we’re passing that on to our students. Our students should think of economic value, institutional value and environmental value as national assets. We want students to come here to learn this concept of inclusive wellness. That's how I see it.”

Messages from Reitaku Faculties

Osamu Nakayama President
Reitaku University
(Japanese Article Only)
Hiroya Ono Vice President
Reitaku University
Masashi Nakajima Professor
the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration


Full-time Faculties: 6
(Part-time: 12)

Suzuka Masamune
Professor, Dean of the Japanese Language Program
(Japanese Article Only)
Shoko Ieda
Associate Professor, Curriculum Coordinator
(Japanese Article Only)
Kazuhiko Tsutsumi
Associate Professor
(Japanese Article Only)
Megumi Nakayama
Associate Professor
(Japanese Article Only)
Rie Kourakata
(Japanese Article Only)
Sayuri Morisawa
(Japanese Article Only)

Green Technologies

Japanese Language Program classes are all carried out in Asunaro Bldg., received a Good Design Award in 2012 for its environmental conservation ideas. Asunaro is built with a lot of new technologies such as attendance recognition system by a non-contact IC cards.

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