E-mail to Your Friend(s)Print Friendly

Golden Jubilee University Presidents' Forum

Dr. Phyllis Wise
Prof. Zhang Jie
Prof. Andrew Hamilton

Some 40 university heads from 14 countries and regions gathered on the CUHK campus for a roundtable on 'Enhancing Intercultural and Multicultural Exchanges in Universities'. The Golden Jubilee University Presidents' Forum held from 6 to 8 December was hosted by CUHK as a highlight of its 50th anniversary celebrations. Among the participants were heads from the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford, the University of Sydney, ETH Zurich, Peking University and Fudan University.

Prof. Joseph J.Y. Sung, Vice-Chancellor of CUHK, said in his welcoming remarks, 'Apart from fostering global partnerships, the synergy generated by the forum will point the way for the future development of global higher education, promoting advancement in university education, expanding the frontiers of learning and research, and cultivating global citizens for the benefit of mankind.'

Three keynotes were given by world-renowned academic leaders. The first one titled 'Global Citizenship: the Role of University Education' was delivered by Dr. Phyllis Wise, Chancellor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She pointed out that collaborations and partnerships that cross disciplines and jump borders are necessary to solve increasingly complex global problems. As today's students who will ultimately be the ones to face and resolve these challenges live in a world where they move seamlessly geographically and socially, university leaders have the responsibility to create the models and build the networks of education that will give them the tools and the opportunities to excel.

In his speech 'University Policies and Strategies: China and the World', Prof. Zhang Jie, President, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), discussed the national educational initiatives and reforms in China, and specifically how SJTU has engaged in international collaborations and performed as the engine and source of innovation to promote innovation in the country. Quoting the example of SJTU, Professor Zhang analyzed how a university becomes an innovative institution through the reform of management philosophy, recruitment of talent and implementation of development strategies.

The third keynote lecture titled 'Partnerships and Collaborations: Universities, Governments and Community' was given by Prof. Andrew Hamilton, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford. He explored the relationship that exists between universities, the government and communities. Taking into account the different expectations set by nations and regional communities as well as the mission and core principles that universities set for themselves, he discussed the extent of compromise between notions of academic freedom and public duty.