The Global Engagement Office of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University hosted the Forum of the Belt and Road Alliance Founding Institutions on 7 July 2023 to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative. Under the theme of “Jointly Building the Belt and Road”, the Forum was organised by PolyU’s Global Engagement Office, which brought together 18 scholars from the founding institutions of seven Belt and Road academic alliances to share insights on fostering talent development, knowledge transfer and research development for sustainable advancement of the Belt and Road countries.
The alliances include the University Alliance of the Silk Road (UASR), Association of Sino-Russian Technical Universities (ASRTU), China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Consortium of Universities, University Consortium of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (UCMSR), Alliance of International Science Organisations in the Belt and Road Region (ANSO), ASEAN-China Network for Cooperation and Exchanges among Engineering and Technology Universities (ACNET-EngTech), and BRICS Universities League (BUL).
In his welcoming remarks, Prof. Ben YOUNG, Vice President (Student and Global Affairs) of PolyU, said, “By leveraging our strong presence in the Mainland, and our expertise and strengths in education, research and knowledge transfer, PolyU has been playing an instrumental role in supporting the country’s Belt and Road Initiative to bring about positive changes in the region. Through this forum, we aim to exchange ideas and experiences with representatives from those academic alliances, in order to unlock opportunities for academic and research collaborations with Belt and Road universities.”
Prof. Geoffrey Q.P. SHEN, Associate Vice President (Global Partnerships) and Chairman of PolyU’s Sub-Committee on Belt and Road Development, said, “PolyU is dedicated to advancing student exchange and academic collaboration with Belt and Road countries. We have co-founded and joined various Belt and Road alliances and are working closely with our partners on initiatives such as cultural exchange, mobility for students and faculty, professional training, and related services. We aim to further strengthen our collaboration with the Belt and Road alliances and their member institutions and contribute to the prosperous development of the Belt and Road.”
The speakers included: Prof. XI Guang, Member of the University Council and Vice President at Xi’an Jiaotong University (Founding Institution and President of UASR); Prof. ZHEN Liang, Member of the University Council and Vice President of Harbin Institute of Technology (Founding Institution and President of ASRTU); Prof. FANG Ying, Vice President at Xiamen University (Founding Institution and President of UCMSR); Prof. CAO Jinghua, Executive Director of the Secretariat Office of ANSO; Associate Prof. ZHANG Jiegen, Director of the Pakistan Study Centre at Fudan University (Founding Institution and President of CPEC Consortium of Universities); Prof. SHEN Yi, Director of Centre for BRICS Studies at Fudan University (Founding Institution and President of BUL); and Prof. SU Rongxin, Deputy Dean of School of Marine Science and Technology at Tianjin University (Founding Institution and President of ACNET-EngTech).
During the Forum, participants shared their experience and best practice on regional academic exchanges and research collaboration to advance the Belt and Road development. Discussions were made on the future alliance development, industry-academia-research collaboration, as well as inter-university and inter-alliance cooperation. The participating institutions have released the “Joint Consensus of the Belt and Road Alliance Founding Institutions Forum,” committing to collectively work towards the high-quality development of the Belt and Road. The full text of the Consensus is available here (Chinese version only).
PolyU has built robust partnerships with tertiary and research institutions worldwide to advance its education, research and knowledge transfer impact around the globe. Actively strengthening its international networks to support the Belt and Road Initiative, PolyU is not only the Co-founder and Vice-President of UASR, but also a member of ASRTU, CPEC Consortium of Universities, UCMSR, and ACNET-EngTech.
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Global Engagement Office
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