Cities with the highest IQ. Where the best brains of the world are
Journeys | 21.10.2020
Academic mobility is an important component of tourism. Today, about 4 million students study abroad. We'll tell you about cities famous for their scientific centres and outstanding students.
Palo Alto, USA
In Palo Alto, the heart of Silicon Valley, there is located Stanford University – an institution that has played a key role in the development of the wired world.

In the early 1970s, Stanford University professor Vinton Gray Cerf developed the TCP/IP protocols, which became the basic communication standard for the Internet, and in 1991, physicists at Stanford Linear Accelerator Center deployed the first worldwide web server outside Europe. Among the university teachers and graduates there are the founders of major technology companies, such as Google, Hewlett-Packard and Cisco Systems.
Key findings from Stanford's recent research include the development of a new generation of batteries that can use the power of mixing salt and fresh water. In September 2019, a Life Sciences Incubator Research Center was established at another branch of the university to support entrepreneurs in developing novel treatments for critical illnesses.

Usually anyone can visit the university campus, but at the moment restrictions are in force. Detailed information about which sites are currently open can be found on the Stanford website.

Palo Alto has a lot to see besides the famous university. In the vicinity of the city, there are campuses of the largest companies, for example, Google, which are usually open to visitors.
Cambridge, USA
In Cambridge, a suburb of Boston, there are as many as two outstanding universities – MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and Harvard University.

MIT was founded in 1861 with the aim of "promoting the advancement, development and practical application of science". MIT research has spurred some of the most important innovations of the past century, including the development of digital computers and the completion of the Human Genome Project. Over the 158-year history of the university, there were 90 Nobel laureates, 59 laureates of the National Medal in Science and 29 laureates of the National Medal for Technology and Innovation among students and graduates of the university. Large corporations founded by MIT employees and graduates include Bose, Dropbox, and iRobot.
MIT's "neighbour", Harvard University, has long been synonymous with high-level education. Founded in 1636, Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States. Throughout its history, the university has trained 48 Nobel laureates, 32 heads of state and 48 Pulitzer Prize winners. Among the recent technologies developed at Harvard there is the "pancreas on a chip". It uses beta cells of human pancreas for rapid tests of new drugs and screening for transplantation.

Both universities are open to visitors. Both Harvard and MIT have special pages with all the information for those wishing to see the campuses. Virtual tours are also available.
Cambridge is a typical collegiate town and its main attractions are associated with the academic world. Among the interesting places are the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology and the Harvard Museum of Natural History. It is easy to lose one's way among the campuses and streets of Cambridge, so it's a good idea to download a map of Cambridge and Boston.
Leuven, Belgium
The university in the Belgian city of Leuven, founded in 1425 by Pope Martin, is the oldest Catholic university in the world. Part of the university's modern mission is to conduct comprehensive and forward-looking scientific research.

University staff and students annually issue a large number of patents and articles that have an impact on researchers around the world. Among the latest innovations of the university is the invention of a new generation of solar panels that can efficiently produce hydrogen gas from the air. Researchers claim panel efficiencies are record-breaking – a 20-unit array of 1.6 square meters can meet the energy needs of the average Belgian family all year round.
The University of Leuven is open to the public, and even guided tours are held here. All information is available on the university website.

Leuven is an example of an old Western European city. Here you can see ancient buildings, modern architecture, admire art and delicious food. The most interesting places in the city are collected in the Leuven guide of our catalogue.
Pohang, South Korea
This small town in the east of the republic is not often mentioned, though it should be. It is in Pohang that one of the best research centres in South Korea is located.

Pohang University of Science & Technology, founded in 1986 by the South Korean steel company POSCO, is a private research university with unique industrial connections. The 400-acre park-like campus includes the university's 93 research units, including the CO₂ Reduction and Sequestration Institute, the Intelligent Robotics Laboratory, and the Computer-Assisted Instruction Center. The Pohang Accelerator Laboratory has the only synchrotron radiation accelerator in Korea.
The university's innovations affect the learning process itself – in November 2018, POSTECH became the first university in Korea to offer short "nanoscale" master's programs, allowing working professionals to deepen their knowledge without being distracted from work.

In the university they pay much attention to openness. Therefore, tours for visitors are constantly held here. Information about applications and contacts is as always available on the official website.

Once in Pohang, do not forget to visit its another visiting card – the Buddhist temples of Pogyeongsa, built iback in 7th century. To make navigation easier, do not forget to download the map.
Zurich, Switzerland
Switzerland is a country that has made a huge contribution to global technological progress. The centre of Swiss science can be considered Zurich, where the country's main technological university is located.

The State Research University, founded in 1855, boasts outstanding students and teachers including Albert Einstein, Wolfgang Pauli and Werner Von Braun.
Today, the main research areas at ETH Zurich include information processing, new materials, medical science and technology. It houses the Binnig and Rohrer Nanotechnology Center, which, in partnership with IBM Research, specializes in the development of atomic-size computers. Zurich is also home to the Center for Functional Genomics. Together with ETH Zurich, it explores new areas of life sciences, including the study of the entire set of proteins in the organism.

The employees have prepared several types of excursions for all who are interested in the life of the university. You can take group tours or walk on your own using a special mobile application. Information and contacts are available on the website.
Zurich is the largest city in the country, so it's worth visiting not only because of the famous university. Museums, cathedrals, squares – you can list the sights of the city for a long time. In order not to get confused in the variety, we recommend you to go to our travel guides catalog for Zurich and choose your own route around the city.
Tokyo, Japan
Japan has long been associated with high technology and groundbreaking research. Two major educational institutions are responsible for training researchers in the Japanese capital – the University of Tokyo and the Institute of Technology.

The University of Tokyo was founded in 1877 as Japan's first national university. It currently has three campuses in Hongo, Komaba and Kashiwa. Its graduates include 15 Japanese prime ministers and five astronauts. Ten of its teaches and graduates have become Nobel Prize winners, including Professors Takaaki Kajita and Yoshinori Ohsumi, who received the Prize in Physics (2015) and Medicine (2016), respectively.
The Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) is known for its collaboration with companies. He has successfully commercialized research since the 1930s. Then the university first became a partner of TDK Corp. for the production of products using magnetic ferrite, a material discovered by the researchers at the institute. Recent successful projects include the collaboration between Tokyo Tech and the multinational company Ricoh to create the next generation of future global telecommunications systems.

Both universities organize tours of their campuses for those who wish, but you need to be mindful of pre-registration and restrictions during the exams. Visiting requests must be sent to the specified contacts of the University of Tokyo and the Institute of Technology.
If this is your first time in Tokyo, you will surely be amazed at its size and how difficult it is to navigate. There are many interesting areas in Tokyo where you should stay. We have an article in our blog that will help you figure out where to live, and you will quickly find the best venues of the city in our travel guides catalog.
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