Freer WEUN920
Professor Martin Freer, Director of Birmingham Energy Institute,speaks at the Beijing launch of WEUN.

University of Birmingham energy experts have joined counterparts from around the world as founder members of a new research network aiming to help solve global energy problems.

Initiated by the China University of Petroleum, the Worldwide Energy University Network (WEUN) aims to create an educational community for global energy that will encourage exchanges and collaboration between countries and regions in energy studies.

Representatives of Birmingham Energy Institute took part in the launch of the Worldwide Energy University Network (WEUN) in Beijing, China. Together with 28 universities from 16 countries, Birmingham was invited to become a founding member of WEUN.

Professor Martin Freer, Director of Birmingham Energy Institute, said: "The opportunity to work with a wide range of world-wide universities, many with a petroleum heritage, on developing solutions for the energy transition to low carbon and affordable energy is an honour.

“This network will provide the opportunity for exchange of researchers, students, skills and creative solutions. The Birmingham Energy Institute is looking forward to taking a significant role in driving the agenda of WEUN."

Delegates at the launch event discussed how to build effective and mutually beneficial collaborations among the member universities, and to better serve the sustained economic and social development of the world.

The event was also attended by senior representatives from the Chinese Ministry of Education, Education Commission of Beijing Municipal Government, and the United Nations.

Professor Laibin Zhang, President of China University of Petroleum and Chairman-elect of WEUN, remarked: “Some of the biggest challenges the mankind are facing fall in the energy field. By forming WEUN we hope to be able to work more closely together in collaborative research and in educating energy talents and to collectively make greater contributions for a sustainable and green development of the world.”

  • 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 6,500 international students from over 150 countries.
  • The Birmingham Energy Institute is the focal point for the University of Birmingham and its national partners, to create change in the way we deliver, consume and think about energy. The Institute harnesses expertise from the fundamental sciences and engineering through to business and economics to deliver co-ordinated research, education and the development of global partnerships. By creating technology and guiding policy today, it aims to help shape energy solutions tomorrow.