On December 7, the Guangzhou International Friendship City University Presidents Forum and the Alliance of Guangzhou International Sister-city Universities, hosted by the Guangzhou Municipal People's Government, was held at the Guangzhou Baiyun International Convention Center. Deputy Mayor of Padova, Deputy Consul-General of the Italian Consulate General in Guangzhou, Director of the Guangzhou Municipal Education Bureau, Li Hongqing, Deputy Inspector of the Municipal Science and Technology Commission, and Guangzhou University President Wei Minghai, Vice President Guo Xingpeng and representatives of the founding members of the Guangzhou International Friendship University Alliance participated in the event. The establishment of the Guangzhou International Sister-City Universities will further promote the cooperation of the universities where Guangzhou International Friendship Cities are located, and build a high-end exchange platform for sustainable development.
With the theme of Promoting Urban Development, GISU focuses on globalization of higher education, industry-research cooperation and international transfer of intellectual property, urban sustainable development, smart city development, and multinational cooperation in biomedicine, artificial intelligence, information technology and new energy materials.
GU President Wei Minghai, Prof. Bevil Milton Glover, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Western Sydney, Prof. Joaquim Ramos de Carvalho, Deputy Vice-chancellor of University of Coimbra, Prof. Francesca Da Porto, Deputy Vice-chancellor of University of Padova, Prof. Karlsson Ulf Otto from the University of Linkoping, Prof. Francois Bedard from the University of Quebec in Montreal and other representatives gave keynote speeches on the forum. The speeches were about Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay District development strategy and opportunities for university research, and education cooperation, urban sustainable development, innovation, cooperation and globalization. Participants had an in-depth discussion and exchange on the interdependent relationship of urban and university development, innovation, collaboration and globalization which will promote sustainable urban development.
Prof. Qu Shaobing delivered a speech at the forum and expressed his welcome and gratitude to the guests and representatives attending the forum and ceremony. “Cities supplies genes, power and security for universities which universities are the highlands of education and the soul of the cities.” He said that as one of the founding members of the GISU, GU will cooperate with all the other member universities in promoting the future development of university and cities and will provide intellectual and talent support for sustainable urban development.
Based on the friendly cooperation between Guangzhou City with 73 cities from 53 countries all around the world, GISU was established to strengthen the links and exchanges among Guangzhou and all of the international sister-cities and local universities, to provide shared international academic resources, to courage education and scientific and technological cooperation, and to improve the vitality of urban development.
The principle of GISU is “voluntaring, equality, collaboration, sharing and mutual benefit”. It founding members include: Guangzhou University (China), the University of Coimbra (Portugal), Linkoping University (Sweden), University of Padova (Italy), the University of Quebec in Montreal (Canada), Tampere University (Finland), and the University of Western Sydney (Australia).
During the meeting, representatives published the "Guangzhou International Friendship University Alliance Declaration", claiming that they would work together to establish a multilateral exchange platform and promote friendly exchanges and cooperation among scholars from the members. More opportunities for international study and interdisciplinary curriculum exchange and joint training opportunities will be provided for the students from the member universities and an articulation system will be set up. Scientific research cooperation among member universities on sustainable urban development will be promoted and innovative and entrepreneurial exchanges will be developed to inspire the youth.
After the ceremony, GU signed agreements on PhD programs and urban sustainable development with the University of Padova and Linkoping University.