The Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation of Tokyo recently gave UCSB almost $6 million to continue research in advanced materials for the next four years. This is the third time the company — which supported the establishment of UCSB’s Mitsubishi Chemical Center for Advanced Materials (MC-CAM) in 2001 — has renewed its partnership with the campus. Since its inception, the center has yielded 85 scholarly publications and 60 patents.
According to Larry Coldren, the acting Richard A. Auhll Dean of Engineering, this partnership is one of the corporate giant’s largest foreign investments. The continued support, he said, is a reflection of the university’s sterling reputation in the scientific community.
“It is a strong endorsement of the quality of UCSB’s research enterprise, the remarkable success of the MC-CAM research program over the past nine years, and the value that Mitsubishi Chemical perceives that it is getting out of the relationship,” Coldren said. “It is notable that the MC-CAM partnership is the largest investment that the Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, the largest chemical company in Japan and the sixth largest in the world, has made in any university outside of Japan and throughout the world.”
Glenn Fredrickson, the center’s director, said the longstanding partnership will continue to benefit both parties.
“It’s a win-win for both,” Fredrickson said. “Their continuing support allows us to do interesting research, and provide our students with a pretty unique experience.”
Ted Cais, director of the Goleta-based Mitsubishi Chemical Research and Innovation Center, said the partnership is a boon to both the university and Mitsubishi.
“For Mitsubishi, a partnership with UCSB means access to world-class professors, students and facilities,” Cais said. “For UCSB, the partnership provides the school with guaranteed funding over a long-term period, access to practical industrial process and production know-how, and a source for unique materials.”
According to Cais, the partnership also offers students various job opportunities.
“The partnership provides students with exposure to industrial-style research for an understanding of technology transfer to business, an opportunity to work in Japan at research labs to experience a different culture and way of thinking — as well as a potential employer in U.S. subsidiaries,” Cais said.