A delegation from Beijing Jiaotong University (BJTU) visited the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on May 9 to sign a Memorandum of Understanding and to explore new opportunities for collaboration. A Chinese national university supported by the Ministry of Education, the China Railway Corporation and Beijing Municipal Government, BJTU has been closely connected with China’s railway industry since the university’s origins in 1896.
The agreement formalizes the partnership between the two universities, which was initiated through research collaborations on urban and regional transportation planning led by Yan Song, professor in UNC’s Department of City and Regional Planning (DCRP) and director of the Program on Chinese Cities. Song, along with department chair Roberto Quercia and Bill Rohe, director of UNC’s Center for Urban and Regional Studies (CURS), traveled to Beijing in April to establish the Consortium for Urban and Regional Transportation, a collaboration between the three represented UNC units and BJTU’s Department of Urban Planning, School of Architecture and Design, and Institute of Urban Planning & Design.
“The consortium will enable research collaboration, student exchange, and many other activities between our two campuses,” said Song.
The delegation, led by Guoyong Cao, chair of the University Council at BJTU, engaged in discussion about areas to expand the partnership with Jonathan Hartlyn, senior associate dean for social sciences and global programs in the College of Arts and Sciences, and representatives from UNC Department of City and Regional Planning, the Kenan-Flagler Business School, the Carolina Asia Center, the Department of Economics, and UNC Global. Following the meeting, the agreement was signed during a ceremony hosted by Ron Strauss, Executive Vice Provost and Chief International Officer at UNC.
Global partnerships, such as the one with BJTU, are a central component to UNC’s efforts to infuse a global dimension throughout the University’s teaching, research and service activities; to deepen and broaden UNC’s global reach; and to enhance its global visibility.