Frequently Asked Questions

Application to the Summer School, Registration Fee, Scholarships

Who can apply and who is this school intended for?

Anyone can apply from January 16th to April 20th: the summer school is targeted for students (specially at a master/PhD level), academics (faculty, researchers and postdoctoral researchers) and professionals.

This school is suitable for all levels, both for people without previous knowledge in Machine Learning, and those wishing to broaden their expertise in this area. It will allow the participants to get in touch with international experts in this field. Exchange of students, joint publications and joint projects will result because of these interactions.


What will I get from attending the summer school?

For students, the summer school provides a unique, high-quality, and intensive period of study. It is ideally suited for students currently pursuing, or intending to pursue, research in Machine Learning or related fields. It will also allow research students to present recent research results through poster presentations. For some students registered in Japanese universities, the attendance to the summer school can be rewarded with credits. Please email us to discuss this matter if necessary.

Professionals who use Machine Learning will find that the summer school provides relevant knowledge and exposure to contemporary techniques. In addition, they will benefit by direct interaction with top-notch researchers and knowledge workers. Previous experience indicates that personnel from both the industry as well as national laboratories benefit immensely from the school.

For academics, the summer school is an excellent opportunity to help getting started in research on novel topics in Machine Learning. It provides an ideal forum for networking and discussions. Academics will also benefit from interaction with IT professionals which will lead to a deeper understanding of real life problems.


How can I apply?

Please refer to the application section.

What is the registration fee?

The registration fee to attend the summer school is:

  • Students
    • 40,000 JPY - 2 weeks
  • Academics (including post-doctoral researchers)
    • 70,000 JPY - 2 weeks
    • 50,000 JPY - 1 week
  • Professionals
    • 90,000 JPY - 2 Weeks
    • 70,000 JPY - 1 Week
    • 50,000 JPY - 3 days (social events not included)
    • 25,000 JPY - 1 day (social events not included)

Please note that we will only accept online card payments in JPY.


When am I expected to pay the fees?

Applicants who have been admitted to the summer school will have to pay the corresponding fees within 2 weeks of receiving their acceptance notification through our payment website, to be announced at a later date.

What is covered by the registration fee?

The registration fee covers the access to all lectures, talks, poster sessions and social events. The registration fee also covers light snacks and drinks during coffee breaks between lectures, as well as light snacks during the poster sessions.

The registration fee does not cover accommodation costs, nor breakfast, lunch and dinner except for what will be provided during social events. Please check the meals section to know more about meal options.


Who can apply for financial support?

Only students can apply for financial support. Students who have already attended a previous edition of the Machine Learning Summer School cannot apply.

Who should apply for financial support?

Financial support will be given in priority to students who would not be able to attend the summer school without financial help or a registration fee waiver, despite having an excellent academic background and a previously demonstrated interest in machine learning or any related discipline.

We particularly have in mind students registered in universities with limited means or students travelling from countries far away from Japan.

Please keep in mind that any request for support needs to be addressed and explained by your referee in the reference letter.

Who will get financial support?

We will first screen applicants based on academic background, regardless of their wish to receive support. Once the list of accepted applicants has been decided, we will allocate what amount we have by weighting it based on need.

What will be covered by financial support?

Financial support will be given to cover partially either or both the registration fee and accommodation costs. If funds are available, partial travel support might also be provided.


For International Travelers

Do I need a visa to stay in Japan during the Summer School?

Citizens of 61 countries – including most European countries, North and South America as well as many Asian countries – are exempted from visa procedures and will receive directly a tourist short term visa (usually 90 days) upon arrival in Japan. Please refer to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' official website for more information. If you need a visa, we will provide you with an invitation letter once your application has been accepted.


How can I get to Kyoto?

Arrival in Kyoto is best by train or bus from Kansai Airport (KIX).

  • Several direct flights connect major hubs from America/Europe/Asia to KIX airport.
  • It takes 75 min from KIX Airport to Kyoto Station by Train using the JR “Haruka” express. Other options, including shuttle buses that can drop you at your hotel are also available for a slightly higher fee.

Another possible route is to make a stop in Tokyo (Narita) Airport (NRT) which is well connected to Itami Airport (ITM).

  • The flight from NRT to ITM takes about 1 hour
  • It takes about 1 hour to go from ITM Airport to Kyoto Station by Airport Bus. There is also a shuttle bus service that can drop you at your hotel for a slightly higher price.
  • It takes about 3.5 hours to go from NRT airport to Kyoto Station by bullet train (Narita Express to Tokyo station + Shinkansen)

Finally, since Tokyo (Haneda) Airport (HND) has now an increasing number of international connections, it is also possible to stop at HND and fly to ITM or KIX (1 hour) or take the bullet train to Kyoto station (3 hours, Keikyu line to Shinagawa + Shinkansen).

These routes (except the HND route) are summarized in the image below, please click on it to get more details.


Venue, Accomodation, Meals

How can I get to the MLSS site once in Kyoto?

The MLSS lectures will take place in the main lecture hall of the Law and Economics Faculty, which appears in the map below.

View MLSS in a larger map

This building is right next to the Clock tower building of Kyoto University.

Both are located in the main section of the Yoshida Campus of Kyoto University. Yoshida campus is the historical campus of Kyoto University and is conveniently located within a 5km radius of Kyoto's most prided cultural assets.


Will you offer wi-fi in the lecture hall?

We are currently looking for different options to provide basic wi-fi connectivity to attendants. We must however warn you that our bandwidth will only be sufficient to check emails and download slides.

Where can I stay?

We have prebooked rooms in the following hotels. They are all conveniently located, have english-speaking staff and should provide you with a good level of comfort. The rates provided below are for 1 person. Please go to our Hotel reservation lists page if you would likte to book a room with us.

Coop-Inn is run by the university cooperative and is located in the most central part of Kyoto, a few minutes by walk to the best shopping, dining and nightlife attractions. You will either need to take the bus (25 minutes) or rent a bicycle (available from the hotel for 500 JPY/day, 5-10 minutes) to cover the 3.3 km that lie between the hotel and the MLSS site. Most of the bicycle ride can be done along the Shimogamo river.

  • Single room, single occupancy: 5,200 JPY (no breakfast) - 6,000 JPY (with breakfast)
  • Twin room, double occupancy: 4,400 JPY (no breakfast) - 5,200 JPY (with breakfast)

Kyoto Palace Side Hotel, 2.5 km from the MLSS site, is located right next to the imperial palace.

  • Single room, single occupancy: 5,000 JPY (no breakfast) - 6,100 JPY (with breakfast)
  • Twin room, double occupancy: 4,100 JPY (no breakfast) - 5,200 JPY (with breakfast)
  • Twin studio (kitchenette), double occupancy: 4,950 (no breakfast)

Kyoto Travellers Inn, 1.9 km from the MLSS site, is right next to the Heian shrine and close to Sanjo.

  • Twin room, double occupancy: 4,200 JPY (no breakfast) - 5,040 JPY (with breakfast)
  • Triple room, triple occupancy: 3,675 JPY (no breakfast) - 4,515 JPY (with breakfast)

Kyoto Heian-no-mori, 1.6 km from the MLSS site, is the closest hotel to the summer school venue.

  • Twin room, double occupancy: 4,500 5,500 JPY (no breakfast) - 5,500 6,500 JPY (with breakfast)
  • Triple room, triple occupancy: 3,500 4,500 JPY (no breakfast) - 4,500 5,500 JPY (with breakfast)

Hotel Avanshell is about 20 minutes by foot (1.8 km, 5 minutes with a rented bicycle) to the MLSS site. The hotel is conveniently located right next to a shopping mall (Qanat Kyoto, information in Japanese) with many shops (apparel, traditional japanese foods, toys etc.) , meal options (sushi, pizza, many bakeries, food court, etc.) and a large supermarket. The hotel is a few meters from the Takano river, whose riverside is perfect for a stroll/jog. Outside of this complex, the area is very popular with Kyoto University students, with many cheap dining options, but it does not offer any notable nightlife.

  • Please book your room at the Avanshell hotel directly (through Rakuten for instance).

How can I get to the MLSS site from these hotels?


If you are able to cycle, we recommend that you rent a bicycle to cover the distance from your hotel to the venue. Weather can be hot and humid in August, but if you ride early in the morning and late in the evening you should be fine. Riding in Kyoto is very pleasant and the city is relatively flat. The bike will also allow you to explore Kyoto conveniently, as most interesting spots are easier to reach by bicycle. Here is a review of your options to rent a bicycle in Kyoto:

  • Attendants staying at the Coop-inn can rent a bike directly from the hotel for 500 JPY a day. Please arrange the reservation of your bicycle in advance.
  • For all other attendants, we have negotiated a 6.500 JPY rate for the summer school length (8/27 to 9/7) with the Kyoto Chirin Chirin company. They can deliver your bike directly to your hotel and pick it up there directly upon your departure. Please contact them directly and through their application form and mention explicitly that you are participating in the MLSS to benefit from the discounted rate.
  • Another option is to rent a bike from a rental shop close to the university for as low as 2.500 JPY for 2 weeks. The bicycle might be a bit old!

Please drive safely and be extra-careful if you have no prior experience of cycling in Japan. When riding, always carry proper identification with you as Police officers sometimes have checkpoints to look for stolen bikes, specially late at night.

Although this rule is not strictly enforced, be aware that it is illegal to ride a bicycle under the influence of alcohol.

Finally, take extra-precautions: some streets in Kyoto are very narrow and are shared by pedestrians, bicycles and cars without strict delimitations.


You can also use Kyoto's bus system, which is air conditioned and very reliable. The closest bus stop to the MLSS site is Kyodai SeimonMae (京大正門前) as can be seen on section A2 of this map. From Avanshell, you can take lines 31, 65 or 206. From Coop-Inn you can use line 31. The ride will cost you approximately 200 JPY.

Taxi Pooling

A very convenient option for small groups will be taxi pooling. There will be taxis close to your hotels, as well as inside the university. Up to 4 passengers can ride a taxi. From Hotel Avanshell the trip fare should not exceed 700 JPY. From Coop-Inn expect about 1,100 JPY. Divided by 4 this can be a far more convenient option than the bus.

Are there other hotel choices?

Kyoto has a wide selection of hotels and youth hostels. For those who prefer to select accommodation on their own, a good selection of hotels and hostels is listed in the TripAdvisor website for Kyoto. You can also check rates and book a hotel through Rakuten Travel. Rates for some youth hostels go as low as 2.500 JPY day. Please email us if you need assistance or advice to book a youth hostel.


Do all hotels in your reservation lists have internet connections?

The Palace Side Hotel, Kyoto Travellers Inn and Coop-Inn all have internet connections (wired, LAN) in each room for free, plus wi-fi in the lobby usually.

However, Heian-no-Mori does not offer internet connection, neither in its rooms nor in the lobby.

I would like to rent a phone to save on local calls during my stay

There are quite a few places you can rent a phone from, notably at the airport, but we recommend rentafonejapan which is a local company and can provide you a student discount (3.900 JPY for your whole stay).


What about meals?

  • Within a radius of 100m from the MLSS site:
    • The basement of the clock tower building has a convenience store with a very large selection of snacks and affordable lunch options.
    • Participants will have access to the university cafeteria (meals for about 500 to 600 JPY) which has a very diverse selection of foods, including vegetarian options.
    • The Cafe Camphora and Restaurant Latour (french) provide more expensive lunch/dining options.
  • Within a radius of 500m from the MLSS site, the Hyakumanben crossing area provides lunch and dinner options for all tastes,
  • Further away,

keep in mind that plenty of local students and attendants will be able to guide you and provide you with advice on meal options.

Please consult the map provided in the Around the venue section to get a better idea of where your best options for dinner are. TOP

What should be my budget for meals?

The university cafeteria is a safe bet for students traveling on a tight budget. It has a large and diversified selection of japanese food and foreign food with some vegetarian options, is rarely crowded by this time of the year and will provide you with a meal for an average meal price of 500 JPY or less.

The Hyakumanben area also has many budget options (from 500 to 1,000 JPY per meal) since this is the area where students usually hang out.

A typical meal in a more sophisticated restaurant costs from 1,000 to 2,000 JPY for lunch and 2,500 to 5,000 JPY for dinner. More to the south, the areas around Gion and Pontocho street are very famous for both upscale restaurants and more reasonable choices.


faq.txt · Last modified: 2012/08/15 23:47 by mcuturi
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