A strong collaboration since the 90's

1997. Organization of the first annual workshop (JFSIMS, for "Japan France Seminar on Intelligent Materials and Systems") by teams from INSA, ECL and Tohoku University. Starting point of the collaborative researches 

2003 (october).  Start of a joint project IRCP (Inter Research Center Cooperative program), supported by both CNRS and JSPS for 3 years on "Intelligent Materials Systems for Biomedical application and Structures Maintenance".

2004. Opening of two “Liaison Offices” between INSA-Lyon and Tohoku University. 

2005. Signature of several agreements of Double Master Degrees between INSA and TU, and ECL and TU.

The global approach of our collaboration aims to take benefit of scientific complementarities between the respective institutions, but also of cultural contrasts as a mean to address the challenges of tomorrow, as this was claimed at the occasion of the triple anniversary of Tohoku University (TU), INSA-Lyon and ECL in 2007.

2007. Creation of an associated international laboratory (LIA ELyTLab, a kind of virtual laboratory), which was launched in December 2008 in Sendai by the President of CNRS, Prof. Catherine Brechignac, (who represented also Claude Bernard University and ENISE of Saint Etienne), the President of INSA, Prof. Alain Storck, of ECL, Prof. Patrick Bourgin, and the President of Tohoku University, Prof. Akihisa Inoue.

Since 2008, The workshops called "ELyT lab annual workshop" bring together 80 to 100 peoples, with 30 to 40 people coming from abroad (for the previous edition in Sendai in February 2015, 38 participants from UdL or CNRS attended the workshop). The operation of the LIA is based on about twenty bilateral projects, involving some doctoral students under joint supervision (double degree doctorate).

2009. Creation of a thematic school alternatively in Lyon and Sendai (ELyT school). The purpose is to attract young students from the partner university.

The general purpose of ELyT is to increase and improve the interconnections between Tohoku University (TU), University of Lyon (UdL) and CNRS, mainly in the fields of engineering science. This means that we need to encourage the diffusion of knowledge and know-how by increasing the opportunities of co-working at both students and staff levels.

2013. The Lyon-Tohoku joint laboratory agreement (LIA ELyT lab) has been renewed for 4 years. Since then, it has been decided to develop new tools in order to reinforce our collaborations in 3 directions, higher researcher mobility, education and industrial partnerships.

2016. Creation of a UMI ("International Joint Unit", a true laboratory) under the joint supervision of the CNRS, Tohoku University and the University of Lyon (Lyon and Saint Etienne COMUE that brings together the institutions concerned).

2017. The research network between Lyon-Tohoku becomes ELyTGlobal