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Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir David Eastwood and USTB President Professor Xinxin Zhang after signing the study agreements.

The University of Birmingham has signed an agreement with the University of Science and Technology Beijing (USTB) to create new education programmes for Chinese students.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir David Eastwood welcomed a delegation of Chinese academics to the University, where he joined USTB President Professor Xinxin ZHANG to sign agreements for two new student programmes.

Sir David also presented Professor ZHANG with an Honorary Professorship as part of the visit.

Senior academics from USTB’s Schools of Metallurgical Engineering, Computer & Communication Engineering, and Energy & Environmental Engineering toured Birmingham’s materials and metallurgy laboratories, as well as the Birmingham Centre for Energy Storage (BCES) and bioenergy facilities.

The new study opportunities are an MSc programme in Thermal Energy & Power Engineering and an undergraduate programme in Mechanical Engineering.

Both study agreements follow the universities establishing the Joint Centre for Energy & Environment Research and Education (CEERE) in 2016 and colleagues at the research facility securing funding for a joint PhD programme.

Professor Sir David Eastwood said: “We are delighted to be working with our colleagues at USTB to develop education opportunities that benefit students in China and allow the University of Birmingham to make a contribution to Chinese society.

“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. These study programmes further strengthen our relationship with USTB and represent another exciting opportunity to foster academic partnerships across the globe.”

Energy storage experts at Birmingham and USTB last year won funding from the Chinese government to enable eight PhD students each year from the Beijing university to study on projects in energy storage technologies and materials at BCES.

Professor Xinxin Zhang, USTB President said: “Since USTB was founded over 60 years ago, we have sought to build strong global partnerships. It brings us great joy to find new friends both near and abroad, and even more so to work with them for our mutual benefit. It is for that reason we have been most proud to count the University of Birmingham as one of our closest partner universities, having built a strong friendship in only a short time.

“We have achieved many successes since we first began our formal collaboration in 2015, establishing CEERE to carry out joint research and cultivate innovative talents. We have seen close academic exchanges between staff and joint research publications to help maintain a close relationship between both universities and there are a number of exciting future opportunities still under negotiation.”

CEERE was established in November 2015 and has seen staff and student exchanges, joint grants applications and joint research publications, as well as the development of student degree programmes at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

During a visit to USTB last year, Professor Andy Schofield, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the University of Birmingham, and Professor Martin Freer, Director of Birmingham Energy Institute, were awarded an Honorary Professorship and a Visiting Professorship respectively.

  • 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.
  • The University of Science and Technology Beijing (USTB) was founded in 1952 following the amalgamation of the best departments in related fields of five eminent universities as a result of a nationwide reorganization of the higher education system. It has developed into one of the most influential key national universities sponsored by the Chinese Ministry of Education. USTB is renowned for its study of metallurgy and materials science. Its main focus is on engineering, whilst maintaining a balanced programme of science, management, humanities, economics and law.
  • USTB Delegates: 
  • Professor Xinxin ZHANG, President of USTB
  • Associate Professor Kanjun GUO, Director, International Office, USTB
  • Professor Ge WANG, Chair Professor, School of Materials Science and Engineering
  • Professor Jianliang ZHANG, Dean, School of Metallurgical Engineering
  • Professor Keping LONG, Dean, School of Computer and Communication Engineering
  • Professor Xiaolong TANG, Deputy Dean, School of Energy and Environmental Engineering