From 2016 it is going to adopt the name of Kindai University.
Kinki is one of the biggest universities in western Japan with more than 32,000 students, but only 329 of them are from overseas.
The university is to change its name to avoid any misunderstanding.
The Kinki name is drawn from its surrounding local region – but the university has had to counter other interpretations.
The new name of Kindai University is a combination of “Kinki” and “Daigaku” for university.
The shift in name is part of its plans for a more international identity.
“The word ‘kinky’ also means perverted. We have no other choice than changing the English name because we are serious about pursuing a more international school culture,” the university’s dean, Hitoshi Shiozaki, told the AFP news agency.
“We aim to get more foreign students coming here, so we’ve decided to change our English name to ensure there is no misunderstanding,” the university told English language newspaper the Japan Times.
It is not clear whether the change in name will affect the university’s English language newspaper, the Kinki Times.