Developing links with business in China

06 Jul 2010 19:45:03.573


The University of Nottingham is forging new links with business in the world’s most dynamic economy.

A delegation of Nottingham academics met with senior figures from industry and government in the Chinese coastal city of Ningbo, for a workshop on research and knowledge transfer.

The workshop, co-organised by the Ningbo Science and Technology Bureau and The University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC), marks a significant step forward in the University’s engagement with business in the People’s Republic.

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Attendees from Ningbo included Mr Hua Changhui, Vice-Chair of Ningbo Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, and Mrs Huang Liqin, Party Secretary and Deputy Director of Ningbo Science and Technology Bureau, as well as leaders responsible for various sectors of business and industry.

The University’s delegation — led by Professor Hai-Sui Yu, Dean of Engineering at The University of Nottingham, UK — drew on leading research groups at Nottingham, including Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Civil Engineering, Manufacturing, Mechanical Engineering, and the Built Environment. The workshop, chaired by Professor Yu, was held at the Ningbo Innovation Harbour, a Research and Development Park.

Mrs Huang Liqin said: “The University of Nottingham is a world-leading university and is distinguished for its international reach and its focus on world-changing initiatives. As one of the UK’s top six universities for collaboration with industry, it has an impressive record of working with blue-chip, global multi-national businesses.

“We will maintain the sincere, pragmatic and innovative spirit of the city to communicate and cooperate with the experts from The University of Nottingham and we anticipate establishing a long-term and stable collaborative relationship with the University.”

The Nottingham delegates brought extensive experience of working in academia and directing major industrial collaborations. Professor Chris Rudd, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for knowledge transfer, outlined the University’s priorities in this field.

Professor Rudd said the University’s research supports Ningbo’s ‘5+5’ industry sectors — five key established industries and five that are newly developing — and aims to have an economic and social impact by helping to enhance the skills and competencies of the workforce and develop the international competitiveness of local enterprises.

Professor Rudd said: “I’ve been very impressed by the keenness and forward-looking attitude of the Ningbo government, and I’m very optimistic about the possibility of future collaboration between Nottingham and Ningbo.”

Professor Nabil Gindy, Vice-Provost and Dean of the Graduate School at UNNC, outlined existing collaborations between The University of Nottingham and global enterprises such as Rolls-Royce and Ford. He emphasised the contribution that has been made by The University of Nottingham in a wide range of areas, including access to world class researchers and facilities, the ability to conduct research ‘off-line’ without affecting production, and access to additional research funding sources.

Professor Gindy said: “We hope this workshop will play an important role in promoting cooperation between Ningbo local enterprises and UNNC.”

Professors George Chen, Paul Shayler, Andy Collop, Nabil Gindy and Dr Peter Rutherford gave presentations on their own areas of expertise and have since been approached by a number of Chinese companies to discuss possible collaborations.

The University became the first foreign higher education institution in the world to open its doors in the People’s Republic when The University of Nottingham Ningbo, China accepted its first students in 2004.

All degrees are delivered in English, to the same specification as Nottingham UK degrees, and all module assessment is standardised across The University of Nottingham’s campuses in the UK, Malaysia and China. The University of Nottingham Ningbo, China now has a thriving community of international staff and 4,360 students. Numbers of students are set to rise to more than 5,000 by September 2010.

— Ends —

Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 100 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and the Times Higher Education-QS World University Rankings.

More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to RAE 2008, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranks the University 7th in the UK by research power. In 27 subject areas, the University features in the UK Top Ten, with 14 of those in the Top Five.

The University provides innovative and top quality teaching, undertakes world-changing research, and attracts talented staff and students from 150 nations. Described by The Times as Britain's “only truly global university”, it has invested continuously in award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. Twice since 2003 its research and teaching academics have won Nobel Prizes. The University has won the Queen's Award for Enterprise in both 2006 (International Trade) and 2007 (Innovation — School of Pharmacy), and was named ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2008.

Nottingham was designated as a Science City in 2005 in recognition of its rich scientific heritage, industrial base and role as a leading research centre. Nottingham has since embarked on a wide range of business, property, knowledge transfer and educational initiatives ( in order to build on its growing reputation as an international centre of scientific excellence. The University of Nottingham is a partner in Nottingham: the Science City.

Story credits

More information is available from Professor Hai-Sui Yu, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, on +44 (0)115 8466884,
Tim Utton

Tim Utton - Deputy Director of Communications

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 846 8092 Location: University Park

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