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From the Vice-president ( Social and Human Sciences )

Shoji Shinkai, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H. Japan is the most aged country in the world. In 2025, the proportion of older people aged 65 years or more is estimated to reach 30%. In 2065, one of every 2.6 Japanese people will be 65 years or older and one of every 3.9 will be 75 years or older. Given this situation, the Social and Human Sciences research division aims to contribute to the realization of “a society of health and longevity” through basic, applied, and practical research to clarify the issues and solve the problems associated with a super-aged society.

At present, three research teams have been formed in regard to social participation and community health, the promotion of independence and mental health, and human care, respectively. Each team has three theme groups, through which multifaceted studies focusing on social participation, social contributions, community health, mental health, oral health, musculoskeletal health, nutrition, frailty, dementia, social isolation, medical services, long-term care insurance services, welfare services, end-of-life care, societal costs, human rights, and so on are conducted. Additionally, five ongoing large-scale longitudinal cohort studies are being conducted through collaboration with the research teams, thereby enabling community-based studies on frailty and dementia in collaboration with the Integrated Research Initiative for Living Well with Dementia and the Center for Prevention from Frailty.

The Social and Human Sciences division is composed of eminent faculty members from different disciplines, including medicine, psychiatry, dentistry, nursing, public health, epidemiology, social welfare, exercise, nutrition, psychology, cognitive science, and rehabilitation. This range of talent and knowledge will enable a strong multidisciplinary approach to assist Japanese society in responding to the greatest challenges arising in a super-aged society. Our research institute has a long history of leading gerontology research and disseminating the fruits of our labor to the world. In keeping with this tradition, we will continue disseminating new results from leading research on gerontology while building a research institute trusted and admired by people both at home and abroad.

Shuichi Awata, M.D., Ph.D.
Vice-president ( Social and Human Sciences )