Birmingham and Chicago: Sister Cities

In 2013 Birmingham and Chicago celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Sister City relationship between the two cities. As part of this relationship (as the premier university in Birmingham), the University of Birmingham has sought to develop its links with institutions in Chicago and the Greater Chicago region. 

This includes links not only with universities, but also with museums, charities and government organisations, all of whom are now working with the University of Birmingham to increase knowledge and find practical ways to apply research expertise.

The Sister City relationship with Chicago is based on a similar background and outlook. Both Birmingham and Chicago are second-cities (albeit Chicago is actually the third-largest city in the USA), with their own distinct identities, recognised for their industrial heritage and for their cultural and artistic contributions. with Chicago is based on a similar background and outlook. Both Birmingham and Chicago are second-cities (albeit Chicago is actually the third-largest city in the USA), with their own distinct identities, recognised for their industrial heritage and for their cultural and artistic contributions.

The Sister City relationship

Both cities and their environs also house prominent universities, including the University of Chicago, Northwestern University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign around Chicago and the University of Birmingham in Birmingham. Along with the presence of various cultural centres, museums, research facilities and a range of large and small industrial companies this produces an environment ideal for collaboration. Whether it be exchange of students to ensure continuing linkages between the two cities or development of high-technology solutions for industrial problems, the University of Birmingham supports and contributes towards the Sister City relationship.

The University of Birmingham has developed a flourishing strategic partnership with the city and region of Chicago, Illinois. A network of faculty-faculty relationships are progressing with leading academic institutions in Illinois, generating research results and funding successes.

Find out more about our relationship with University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC).