The Toyota Technological Institute, a university covering various engineering disciplines located in Nagoya City, Japan, was founded in 1981 from funds from the Toyota Motor Corporation as directed by the Toyoda family. They decided to start a computer science department and locate it in the states to have a broader access to computer science faculty and students. For various reasons they settled on Chicago and set up an agreement with the University of Chicago, using space in the University of Chicago Press building. TTI-C has just officially started up and have already signed up a few strong faculty members including theorist Adam Kalai and Fields medalist Stephen Smale. TTI-C plans to increase its faculty size and start up a graduate program in the near future.
Although there will be some sharing of courses and a few of our faculty (including myself) sit on a Local Academic Advisory Council for TTI-C, TTI-C will formally maintain itself as a separate institution from the University. Nevertheless close collaborations between our department and TTI-C has already established an exciting research environment for our combined faculty and students.