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WASEDA University Newsletter from WOL No.1 (2009-07-06)

Opinion Weekly Opinion

New Influenza: Is Quarantine a Rational Measure?

Kazuhiko Machida
Professor, Faculty of Human Sciences, Waseda University

Since World War II, infectious diseases were becoming a thing of the past in developed countries due to the development of public health and medical care, and especially the success of antibacterial agents and vaccines. At the same time, however, type-A influenza, with its highly variable antigen, continues to take its toll – seasonal flu kills about 10 thousand people in Japan and 30 thousand in the United States every year, even when there is no epidemic – and professionals and authorities have always been concerned about the potential emergence of a new flu in the future. We thought that the avian flu might have been that new strain, but surprisingly enough, it turned out to be another new flu, swine flu, which was suddenly contracted from pigs in Mexico in April 2009.

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Research Knowledge Co-Creation - Profiles of researchers

Collective Effort in Robot Research—Working to Construct “M-Robotics”

Professor Atsuko Shimbo-Kobayashi
Waseda University Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and Sciences

The 1960s were in the middle of Japan’s rapid economic growth. The character Astro Boy drove people dreams toward the future of scientific technology, and that expectation and excitement reached a peak at the Osaka Exposition in 1970. This period was the background in which Japan started full-scale robot research, and that research has continued to lead the world until today.

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Culture

The Flowering of Shanghai Theater

Naoko Suzuki
Research Associate, Waseda University Tsubouchi Memorial Theatre Museum

Shanghai was once known as the “devil’s city”. This image is represented by the modern architecture which exists along the banks of the Huangpu River in the area known as the Bund (Wai Tan), and by Nanking Road, which bustles with people. All of the architecture and international settlements which form the image of Shanghai were created after entering modern times. In 1842, after the Opium War, Shanghai was opened by the Treaty of Nanking and forced to form itself into a modern city. The form of Shanghai was brought about by modernization, and this image remains in the city even today.

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