The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and Xi’an Jiaotong University (XJTU) signed an agreement yesterday (28 August) in Xi’an to establish the XJTU-HKUST Joint School of Sustainable Development (JSSD). To tie in with the economic and social development needs of Central and Western regions of Mainland China and beyond, JSSD will focus on promoting sustainability, through nurturing the talents, promoting frontier knowledge and providing advanced technology. It will also create capabilities in the areas of sustainable energy, chemical engineering, materials science, environment, infrastructure, population and socioeconomic development. Both universities are forming a strategic cooperation to foster a new synergetic regional economic development mode.
HKUST is dedicated to fostering frontier interdisciplinary research. Environment preservation, energy and sustainability development are some of its key research areas. The university is also in world-leading position in advanced materials, engineering science and infrastructure scientific fields. Leveraging on China’s rapid economic growth and investment in science and technology, HKUST is strategically building exciting partnerships with provincial and municipal governments, tertiary institutions and enterprises in Mainland China to boost its competitiveness and explore more opportunities. XJTU, a major university and regional leader in China’s west, has developed solid and in-depth collaborations with HKUST in teaching and research.
The cooperation agreement signing ceremony was well attended including Mr Hao Ping, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Education; Mr Sun Qingyun, Deputy Party Secretary of Shaanxi Province; Ms Zhu Jingzhi, Vice Governor of Shaanxi Provincial People’s Government; Ms Li Jing, Vice Mayor of Xi’an Municipal People’s Government; Council Chairman Mr Wang Jianhua and President Prof Zheng Nanning from XJTU; HKUST’s Council Chairman Dr Marvin K T Cheung, Council Vice-Chairman Dr Michael H H Mak, President Prof Tony F Chan, Provost Prof Wei Shyy, Vice-Presidents Dr Eden Y Woon and Prof Joseph H W Lee.
Prof Tony F Chan, HKUST President said during the ceremony, “HKUST is pleased to form a watershed strategic interdisciplinary partnership with XJTU, a top research university in Mainland China. Both universities will fully utilize their teaching and research strengths, and establish a synergistic, innovative nexus between government, industry, universities and the research sector. We strive to incorporate the latest trends of the world’s most advanced technology, implementing the strategy of China’s Western Development and expanding opportunities for collaborations. We are committed to nurturing talents, promoting innovation and industrial technology to international level, and in particular to promoting sustainable development in energy and chemical industries, public service in the Northwestern region, science and technology innovation, urbanization and so on. The move is also an important step in promoting academic, research and cultural exchanges for HKUST students and faculty members, as well as to the Hong Kong community at large, boosting frontier science and technology. ”
Prof Zheng Nanning, XJTU President said, “By combining the strength of HKUST and XJTU, the School of Sustainable Development will soon become an ideal platform to promote deeper collaboration between the two universities in various perspectives: engineering, humanities and social science, as well as new emerging discipline and course structure optimization. Introducing international standards, we will contribute to China’s talent nurturing reform and will effectively incorporate education and research with China’s strategic planning and development.”
With the joint efforts of HKUST and XJTU, the School will provide a platform in nurturing talents from Hong Kong and Mainland China, advance knowledge and innovation, and promote sustainable development. This collaboration will create a new paradigm for educational system reform and set up new disciplines on sustainable development under internationalized and interdisciplinary system, dual mentorship and credits transfer. The “Overseas-Hong Kong-Xi’an” academic exchange and internship schemes will broaden students’ global perspectives.
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