Between June and July 2022, I applied for a six-week exchange at Kanazawa University, and participated in the activities of the Urban Planning Laboratory there. My PhD research aims to develop a novel methodological approach for modelling and analyzing urban colourscapes by using 3D modelling, virtual reality (VR) and spatial analysis, in order to support environmental design. Since the Urban Planning Laboratory of Kanazawa University takes the leading place in the field of urban and environmental planning which is supported by cutting-edge geospatial techniques in GIS, VR and Artificial intelligence (AI), the purpose of this exchange was to contribute to the technical aspect of my study. I’m thankful to the Graduate School for the Research Support Award that made possible my trip over to Japan. 

During this exchange, I made a presentation of my PhD work titled ‘Modelling and analysing 3D urban colourscapes to support environmental design’ in the weekly group meeting of the Urban Planning Lab, and received helpful feedback from the lab director, Prof. Zhenjiang Shen. Besides, from the weekly group meetings, I was greatly inspired by those presentations from other PGR students, who were working on similar aspects as mine and sharing their knowledge. 

n addition, I participated in Eurasia Spatial Planning Symposium organized by Kanazawa University, themed ‘Spatial Planning in Asian region’. During this symposium, the invited speakers from Japan, China, and Korea delivered their talks on spatial planning in Asian Region in person or via the Internet. The cutting-edge techniques and novel views from those professionals benefited my research a lot. 

Cultural exchange in Japan was fascinating as well. I’ve travelled around the surrounding area of the university, and was attracted by the unique Japanese culture. Moreover, my accommodation during the exchange was the International Centre, where I made friends from all over the world, such as Bangladesh, Azerbaijan Ukraine and Germany. We talked about each other’s country and culture, enjoyed Japanese food, set bonfire and fireworks along the beach, which made this exchange really unforgettable and invaluable. 

In general, this exchange was quite a special experience during my PhD. The difference in both academia and culture between Japan and UK left me with a deep expression, which had a profound impact on my academic career.

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