Division of International Cooperation

We are actively promoting environmental health science studies by disseminating the research of the Center for Environmental Health Science Research and Education both domestically and internationally.

Since the Center’s opening, we have hosted an international symposium at “Sustainability Week” held at Hokkaido University, engaged in research exchanges with researchers in Japan and overseas, and widely shared information with citizens. As an inter-university agreement school cooperation project, we are actively inviting and visiting affiliated universities and holding forums. We will continue to accept researchers from overseas, promote dispatch from Japan, and carry out international joint research.

BiCCA (Birth Cohort Consortium of Asia)

In recent years, various organizations and institutions worldwide have raised concerns about the adverse health effects of exposure to chemicals from the environment and have become global issues, especially for children.

As a result, cohort studies (birth cohort studies) followed from the pregnancy period have been conducted worldwide. In Europe, epidemiological studies have been performed in the largest number of countries. The “Environmental Health Risks in European Birth Cohorts (ENRIECO Project)” was established in 2009 by a gathering of (newly planned) birth cohort studies. Many research findings have been obtained in countries of the Asia-Pacific region. However, there are situations where issues related to the environment and child health are not fully recognized.

On the other hand, various races in Asia, lifestyle, development, and environmental problems are also diverse. Also, there are some global problems, such as cross-border chemical movements, waste disposal problems, and the effects of climate change while rapidly globalizing and urbanizing, which are different from those in Europe.

We believe that international cooperation between birth cohorts in Asia is indispensable. Therefore, in 2011, The Birth Cohort Consortium of Asia was established by the principal investigators (PIs) of the following three birth cohorts in Asia: the Taiwan Birth Panel Study (TBPS) from Taiwan (PI: Pau-Chung CHEN), the Mothers and Children’s Environmental Health Study (MOCEH) from Korea (PI: Eun Hee Ha), and the Hokkaido Study on Environment and Children’s Health (Hokkaido Study) from Japan (PI: Reiko Kishi).

The two main objectives of BiCCA are to (1) facilitate the exchange of knowledge and collaboration between cohorts and researchers and (2) explore the future need for children’s environmental health research.

The BiCCA consortium intends to expand beyond Asia, provide detailed information about the Asian birth cohorts, and facilitate access to existing Asian cohort studies. The BiCCA especially welcomes birth cohorts in Asia to collect epidemiologic data across different Asian countries.

For more information, please visit the official BiCCA website.