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From left, Professor KK Cheng, Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir David Eastwood, President Dr. Xu Ningsheng, Professor Jon Frampton and Professor Zhu Chouwen

The President of Fudan University, in China, visited the University of Birmingham to explore potential for working together on future research, as well as student and staff exchange.

Fudan University President Dr. Xu Ningsheng was joined by Professor Zhu Chouwen – Director of Fudan University's Foreign Affairs Office as they visited the University.

The guests were welcomed by Professor Jon Frampton, Deputy Pro Vice Chancellor and Director of the China Institute. Following a brief tour of the campus, the visitors met Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir David Eastwood and other senior academic staff.

Professor Sir David Eastwood said: “Our distinguished guests’ visit is testament to the University of Birmingham’s growing reputation in China and presents another exciting opportunity for our researchers to foster strong partnerships across the globe.

“As a global ‘civic’ university in the 21st century, our responsibilities include contributing to enriching the life of both our home city and the wider world. We look forward to deepening our already strong partnership with Fudan University, as well as enhancing the education we provide to their students.”

The Chinese delegation took the opportunity to explore opportunities to expand existing teaching collaborations and develop new research links in areas such as translational medicine, cancer treatment and engineering.

President Xu Ningsheng said: “As I have studied, researched and worked in Birmingham for many years, I deeply understand how much the University of Birmingham, as an advanced, characterised comprehensive university, contributed to local society, the UK, and world development.

“I visited Birmingham as the President of Sun Yat-sen University before, and as the President of Fudan University now. During this trip, I felt very encouraged to explore a deeper, broader, and more substantive cooperation with the University of Birmingham.”

Students from Fudan University have been studying at Birmingham for some time in areas such as chemistry, engineering, and metallurgy.

In 2016, the University signed an agreement allowing Fudan students to enter Philosophy, Religion and Ethics, or Theology and Religion degrees.

Fudan is also one of the largest contributors to the Birmingham International Summer School, with 24 students attending this year.

Professor Zhu Chouwen said: “The University of Birmingham was the first partner to cooperate on degree programmes with Fudan University - setting a model for the other collaborations. I look forward to our cooperation targeting more disciplines and firmly believe that we will see even more fruitful results.”

Reflecting on the impact of the visit, Professor Jon Frampton said: “This was a very positive and productive meeting with President Xu and Dr Zhu, building on initial steps taken over the last six months towards a broader and deeper partnership between Fudan University and the University of Birmingham.

“Today has laid the foundations for focused discussions on enhanced student exchange and possible research collaboration in areas such as translational medicine and quantum technology.”

Professor Frampton added that the University of Birmingham hoped to deliver a ‘showcase’ event in Shanghai later this year to increase awareness of the potential for stronger ties between the two universities.

For more information or interviews, please contact Tony Moran, International Communications Manager, University of Birmingham on +44 (0) 121 414 8254 or +44 (0)782 783 2312.

• The University of Birmingham is ranked amongst the world’s top 100 institutions, its work brings people from across the world to Birmingham, including researchers and teachers and more than 5,000 international students from over 150 countries.
• It is ranked 7th in the UK for Graduate Employability (Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2014/15) and was named University of the Year for Graduate Employment 2015/16 by The Times and Sunday Times.
• The history of collaboration between China and the University of Birmingham dates back almost to the foundation of the University in 1901. The University’s China Institute was created in 2012 to reflect Birmingham’s extensive academic activities its colleagues undertake in China.
• Fudan University was established in 1905 and is ranked 6th in China. It is a member of C9 (the best nine Universities in China, also known as the elite Chinese Higher Education Institutions Community). Fudan is one of the both Project 985 and 211 universities and one of the oldest Universities in China.
• Fudan University is an active member of U21 and has a long history of collaboration with the University of Birmingham.