Chengdu and VIA strengthens cooperation

A Dane and a Chinese
Chengdu University and VIA University College met to discuss increased cooperation on student exchange programmes, academic partnerships, and establishing a joint research center in Chengdu.

On Wednesday, President of Chengdu University, Mr. Jiliu Zhou and Deputy Director of the Office of International Cooperation and Exchange, Yusong Ou, visited VIA University College to discuss how the two universities can elaborate on the existing partnership. 

Longer study programmes for students 

Among the ideas discussed was developing joint-degree and academic exchange programmes in areas such as early-childhood learning, nursing, and technology. So far, the two universities cooperate within several educational areas, mostly on short-stay programmes. But when representatives met at VIA, there was a mutual interest in broadening the options for students and faculty. 

“We see several ways in which we can develop our cooperation, including offering longer-stay programmes for Danish and Chinese students,” said Mr. Jiliu Zhou. 

Joint research-center in Chengdu 

During the Chengdu University President’s tour of VIA Campus Horsens, he and the Director of the School of Technology and Business, Konstantin Lassithiotakis, discussed the possibility of establishing a joint research center in Chengdu. 

“Chengdu University is very interested in setting up a research center in the area of sustainable energy solutions. And the Municipality of Chengdu is very interested in supporting such Danish-Chinese collaborative center,” said Mr. Jiliu Zhou. 

The research center would be located in Chengdu. Konstantin Lassithiotakis stressed that further details about the specific setup and areas of research would have to be discussed. 

“The idea is very interesting to us at VIA, where we have expertise within energy storage, water supply and water treatment – all of which are important areas to our partners in Chengdu ,” said Konstantin Lassithiotakis, adding that the Municipality of Horsens and Chengdu this year signed a Sister City agreement that increases the interest in collaborating even more. 

Exploring academic partnerships 

VIA and Chengdu University representatives also discussed ways to increase the academic collaboration between faculty, such as working on joint projects for scientific publication. 

“We are certain that our partnership with VIA has great potential,” Mr. Jiliu Zhou said. 

Vice-President at VIA University College, Peter Friese, who hosted the meeting at Campus Aarhus N, expressed great confidence in the Chinese-Danish partnership. 

“We look forward to exploring our collaborative activities with Chengdu University,” Peter Friese said.