Matsushita, university to team up

OSAKA — Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. and the University of Tokyo will soon sign a joint research and development accord, Matsushita officials said.

Matsushita and the state-run school will jointly choose R&D themes, the officials said Friday, which is unlike usual company-university tieups in which universities join R&D projects previously launched by firms.

The two will form a committee to select themes. Initial ideas include technologies for a barrier-free environment against the background of Japan’s aging population and information technology for industrial applications.

The major consumer electronics firm is likely to give the university several hundred million yen each year for research costs. The R&D initiative will begin next spring.