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Comprehensive List of Researchers "Information Knowledge"

Department of Systems and Social Informatics

AKIBA, Fuminori
Philosophy of Information Group
Associate Professor
Dr. of Literature
Research Field
Collaboration of aesthetics and science / Artifacts and communication / Body-aesthetics

Current Research

Communication through Artifacts ?- Taking Lessons from Art
By utilizing humanist studies on art and artifacts, I try to contribute to the development of the information society.
(1) Promoting effective use of humanities resources
Humanist studies on artifacts intended for communication, for instance, studies on advertisement, have revealed many things about how we process raw materials to understand sequences or patterns of information. The same is true of humanist studies on the structures of works of art such as literature, paintings, and films."How should we open our story to catch the attention of audience ?""How should we arrange various episodes to keep their attention to the end ?""How should we manipulate the characters to reach a climax ?"etc. These are the questions frequently asked by humanist studies including poetics, literary theories, art history, cultural anthropology, semiotics, narrative studies, and film studies. These theories and studies have accumulated many important results, but the results are usually written in highly jargonized styles inaccessible to people with different cultural or educational backgrounds. Such inaccessibility causes indifference to humanities resources. Therefore, the first task of my research is making their jargon more accessible and more useful. I hope to collaborate with many scholars from different research backgrounds.
(2) Arts in Society
Like advertisements, artifacts intended for communication sometimes receive unexpected praise and sometimes become the target of harsh criticism after public or social contact. When the artifact is a product of technological innovation, it elicits a greater laudatory or critical public response. For instance, products of reproductive technologies such as etching, letterpress, and photography, always evoke approval and disapproval of them. The inflow of products from different cultures produced by different techniques causes unfounded allergies. The same thing is said of works of art. Regardless of their original intention, sometimes they are worshipped for political reasons and sometimes enthusiastically praised for economical reasons as the objects of investment. The original intention is corrupted under a power struggle. To make matters worse, such corruption often leads people to commit hateful and discriminatory acts. Therefore, it is crucial that we, who have deep commitments to artifacts intended for communication, clarify why such corruption occurred.
(3) Aesthetics
Confronted with these two topics, we are forced to use unfamiliar concepts such as fiction, imitation, creation, characterization, identity, author, intention, influence, etc. Among these concepts there are still many concepts on which scholars have not reached a consensus. So the third topic of my research is to elaborate these concepts into more shareable ones.
I hope to collaborate with scholars from various cultural backgrounds. Without such cooperation I can do nothing about the topic 1.
Figure : Effective use of humanities resources

Figure : Effective use of humanities resources


  • Fuminori Akiba received a Dr. of Letters degree from Kyoto Univ. in 1996.
  • Since 2000, he has been an Associate Professor of the Graduate School of Human Informatics, Nagoya University.
  • Since 2003, he has also been an Associate Professor of the Graduate School of Information Science, Nagoya University.

Academic Societies

  • Japanese Society for Aesthetics


  1. Do Scientific Researches on Artworks End Up With the Alteration of Authorial Intention ?, Journal of Human Environment Studies, Vol. 3, No. 1, 27-32 (2005).
  2. How Can We Transcend Cultural Boundaries ? ―Lessons from Japanese Media Artists, in Aesthetics of Four Elements, ed. by K. Iwaki (2005), 5-11.
  3. Hermann Cohen and Art History, in Jewish People in Modern Art and Art History, ed. by T. Kodera (2005), 25-39.