Faculty of International Economic Studies
The Faculty of International Economic Studies was established in April 2020. It aims to develop human resources—people—with the ability to play an active role on the international stage, particularly in the East Asian region, while taking advantage of the regional characteristics and advantages of Niigata as a gateway to East Asia. Another objective of the faculty is the development of Niigata as part of a network with East Asia, while becoming an education and research base for cultivating human resources with practical skills.
Our faculty members with high level of expertise train students to develop:
- expertise in understanding and analyzing the structure of economy, industry, and firms.
- the ability to read and analyze data and information.
- language and communication competence for active global participation.
The Faculty of International Economics is your gateway to infinity and beyond!
Specific Features of the Faculty of International Economic Studies
(1)Systematic and step-by-step curriculum development
The curriculum is designed in a way that students gradually build knowledge and capabilities over their period of studies by first enrolling in liberal arts education courses, English language courses and introductory-level courses in economics (1st year). Next, students refine their professional expertise through fundamental specialized courses, professional (2nd year) and applied courses (3rd and 4th year). English language proficiency courses are designed to match the student’s current proficiency level and allow systematic language proficiency acquisition.
(2)Focus on practical data analysis
“Data is the new gold” in today’s information- and data-driven economy. Information is extremely valuable to any industry and profession. Recognizing this trend, our curriculum is designed in a way that gives students an opportunity to learn not only a basic level of data analysis, but also harness their analytical and practical skills.
(3)High level of English language proficiency and language competence
One feature that particularly distinguishes our curriculum from other economics curricula offered in many Japanese educational institutions is the focus on developing high levels of English language proficiency and language competence. The number of hours allocated for English-language acquisition is one of the highest among all economic-focused academic curricula in Japan. By using top-notch international pedagogical practices, we train our students to acquire practical English skills essential for their future professional careers by offering English language courses, CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) courses, and EMI (English as a medium of instruction, e.g., economics subjects delivered entirely in English) courses. In addition, our students can receive foundational instruction in Russian, Chinese or Korean language.
(4)Small-group practical education
The small enrollment capacity (90 students per year) allows us to organize courses with a small-number of students and increase student-teacher interaction in many courses. The student-teacher ratio for our faculty is currently 5:1 and is one of the lowest among similar programs offered in other Japanese universities.
(5)Professional faculty members with high level of expertise in the respected fields
There are currently 18 faculty members at the Faculty of Economic Studies, including five foreign faculty members. Many of our faculty members received their academic degrees abroad or participated in study abroad programs and various international faculty trainings programs. Thus, they possess high levels of expertise in the respective fields. We also have a good balance of academic-oriented faculty members and faculty members with extensive practical expertise in business or government agencies.
Our Academic Curriculum
Our academic curriculum allows students to deepen their understanding of the structure of the economy, industry, and firms and simultaneously acquire practical skills such as informational, analytical, and international communication skills. Students can effectively apply this knowledge to identify complex economic problems and provide evidence-based solutions to them.
There currently 157 courses available in our academic curriculum, including 62 courses of Communicative English for Academic Purposes, second foreign language and study abroad programs, 34 fundamental courses (including liberal arts education) and 61 specialized courses. Among the specialized courses are nine courses delivered entirely in English: Current Issues in Japanese Economy, Current Issues in the East Asian Economy, Current Issues in the World Economy, Economic Growth, Development Policy Studies, Internationalization of Firms, Business Studies in North East Asia, Economic Integration in ASEAN, Global Financial Market.
During the first year, students focus on liberal arts-based studies, English language, and introductory-level economic courses such as Introduction to Microeconomics, Introduction to Macroeconomics, Introduction to Statistical Analysis, Introduction to Mathematics for Economics, Introduction to World Economy, and Introduction to East Asian Economy. Introductory-level courses equip students with academic literacy, and language ability and are also meant to nurture their interest in diverse economic phenomena.
During the second year, students study fundamental specialized courses such as intermediate-level Microeconomics and Macroeconomics, Economic Policy, Regional Economics, Current Issues in the Japanese Economy, Econometrics, Fundamentals of Data Science and Data Processing, and others. The students also choose between the two areas of their specialization (somewhat similar to a minor).
In the International Economy Course, students learn about the structure of economies, industries, and firms of East Asia, and the economies of other foreign countries. They acquire both specialized knowledge and the practical and analytical skills necessary to take an active role in this era of globalization. Selective specialized fundamental subjects available through the International Economy Course include International Trade, International Finance, Current Issues in the East Asian Economy, Current Issues in the World Economy, Development Economics, and Economics of Emerging Markets.
In the Regional Economy Course, students learn about the structure of regional and local economies, industries, and businesses from an international perspective. They are expected to be proactively engaged in the development of regional and local economies, industries, and businesses, and to play an important role in their revitalization. Selective fundamental specialized courses available through the Regional Economy Course include Regional Innovation Policy, Regional Information Studies, Regional Designing, Studies of Regional Support for Entrepreneurial Startups and Small Businesses, and Regional Environmental Studies.
During their third and fourth years, students enroll in professional and applied courses which help them acquire practical expertise to solve specific economic problems. Common professional and applied subjects for both International Economy and Regional Economy courses include Public Economics, Industrial Economics, Finance, Economic Growth, Economic Statistics and Advanced Data processing.
In the International Economy Course, students learn more deeply about subjects such as Russian Economy, Chinese Economy, Korean Economy, Development Policy Studies, Internationalization of Firms, Business Studies in Northeast Asia, Global Financial Markets, and others.
In the Regional Economy Course, students learn more deeply about subjects such as Environment and Regional Infrastructure, Regional Industry A (Manufacturing), Regional Industry B (Services), Regional Industry C (Infrastructure), and others
Special seminars with a small class size are also offered during the third and fourth years. These allow students to nurture applied and practical skills along with expertise in the respected fields of their specialization.