Keio University, Graduate School of Media and Governance
MAUI Project
Ph.D. Dissertation

[ English | Japanese ]
Back to Index Page

ACADEMIC YEAR 2007 (March 23rd, 2008)
TITLE A Model for Autonomous and Sustainable Educational Collaboration on Digital Infrastructure

This dissertation proposed an educational collaboration architecture on a digital infrastructure in Asia, which provides an environment where universities interconnect together in education and research on top of each university's existing research and education environment. The environment provided by this architecture enabled the universities to collaborate regardless of national borders, cultures, and religions. The purpose of this architecture is to enable university-level educational collaborations and realize an educational platform in Asia that can work to solve global issues. The proposed architecture was implemented in more than 20 universities in Asia. Its scalability across regions and deployment to global environment were demonstrated by proposing, developing and evaluating operational and administrative collaboration models.

The proposed architecture consisted of three modules: 1. a distance education system, 2. collaboration guideline development, and 3. operator development.

The distance education system is a region-wide real-time lecture-sharing environment among multiple universities. The system achieved the following three results. It solved the Internet infrastructure gap among universities by using an additional satellite communication link for the Internet connectivity. It enabled lecture sharing with multiple universities, simultaneously and in a real-time manner by introducing multicast-capable applications and network. It enabled universities to effectively use the existing facilities for establishing the distance education system by introducing and clearly defining Relay Site, Primary Site, and Receiving Site, which are the concepts of the universities' roles in this distance education system.

The collaboration guidelines clearly defined the university roles in the proposed distance education system so that each university can easily understand how to establish its site. The guidelines also set the administrative collaboration procedures to enable formal education collaborations among universities. In addition, the guidelines also defined the interfaces to collaborate with other distance education systems to share education resources across each distance education system.

In order to make the distance education system scalable and sustainable, it is mandatory to have skillful human resources at each site who operate and maintain the site autonomously. This research developed operators at each site, and proposed a region-wide realtime distributed hands-on workshop to develop the operators timely and effectively.

The architecture has been deployed in Asia for six years to evaluate its feasibility and sustainability. The simple requirements enabled many organizations to interconnect. The Receiving Site was installed at 23 organizations in 11 countries. The Primary Site was installed at 30 sites in 7 countries, and the Relay Site was placed at Keio University, Shonan Fujisawa Campus. The collaboration guidelines enabled autonomous educational collaborations among the universities, where an educational collaboration can be forged even between two universities within this architecture. The operator development provided the skilled human resources for the daily implementations of the collaborations. 26 university level courses, with a total of 243 lectures, and 68 realtime sessions including conference broadcasting and faculty meetings were conducted on the environment. The contents included information technology, agriculture, marine science and technology, law, disaster management, renewable energy, nursing, and bio-informatics. The results of this six years of educational collaborations proved the sustainability of this architecture.

The proposed distance education architecture was proved to work effectively and timely for region-wide problems. Furthermore, the distance education system in this architecture can interconnect with other distance education systems, for collaborations to share educational resources. I believe this kind of collaborations will lead to the world-wide distance education platform development. This research realized an effective and sustainable architecture that can achieve education collaborations across borders, and proved an international platform to work on global issues.

Keywords: 1. Tertiary Education, 2. Autonomous Collaboration, 3. Distance Education, 4. Human Resource Development, 5. Satellite Communication, 6. Asia

CONTACT To obtain the whole paper, please contact;
MIKAWA, Shoko ( funya at )

MAUI Proejct
Last update:

Back to Project Home Page