Made in Nottingham - two hundred Chinese businesses

03 Nov 2015 15:58:08.763

Over 200 chief executives of Chinese geospatial engineering businesses have been trained by The University of Nottingham over the last six years.

Together with China’s National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation (NASG), the University started training CEOs in 2009, with the aim of improving cooperation between the UK and China on  projects based around geospatial science.

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The unique course not only equips participants with the knowledge and confidence to broaden the outreach of their businesses, but also offers opportunities for networking and making new business partnerships.

Changing working methods
The course has resulted in business leaders changing their working methods and has also given them the chance to work internationally with partners. In addition, it has equipped them with the knowledge and skills to successfully improve their businesses.

More than 220 leading Chinese CEOs and government officials in the geospatial sciences sector have been trained through the course and it has become one of the most successful UK-China executive training programmes. In July 2012, the course also became an integral part of the Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre’s (SUGEC) UK branch.

The SUGEC is a joint venture established by The University of Nottingham and the Chinese Academy of Surveying and Mapping, the research arm of the NASG.  It is based at the University of Nottingham’s Innovation Park and is a leading centre for implementing effective knowledge transfer between China and the UK in the geospatial sector.

Enhancing collaboration
The UK and China have agreed to cooperate on space technology, and on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS). The aim is to  enhance collaboration amongst universities, research institutions and industrial communities, while also promoting the sharing of data and research, with a focus on land mapping and climate change monitoring. 

Speaking about the success of the NASG training course, Professor Sir David Greenaway, Vice-Chancellor of The University of Nottingham, said: “I value very highly the collaboration between the University of Nottingham and the National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation.

"The impact of the talent development, delivered by the Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre in Nottingham, has been particularly impressive with many excellent examples which show how the value created by this has developed the businesses of participants."

Business transformation
Many chief executives have spoken about the transformative effect that the course has had on their businesses. Mr Yang Yukun, Chief Executive of Zhengyuan Geomatics Co. Ltd, said: “In 2009 we were trained at the University of Nottingham for 15 days but those 15 days were an immense chapter in our lives. Over these six years Zhengyuan’s portfolio and net-worth has risen at a fast pace. This achievement could not have been secured without the NASG-Nottingham CEO Training Course.”

Mr Cui Minwei, CEO of Beijing Xinxing Huaan Surveying Limited Co., who was part of the first cohort, added: “Last year, for the first time, my business was ranked on China’s Top 100 Geoinformation Company table. This is a direct positive result of the NASG CEO training course!”

Another company whose CEO took part in the programme, Xian Dadi Survey Co., Ltd, has seen its annual turnover grow from less than 1 million pounds to a current worth of 8 million pounds, with an average growth rate of 30% per annum.

The success of NASG-University of Nottingham collaborations and the Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre were further acknowledged earlier this year when the Deputy Director General of NASG met with Vice Chancellor, Prof Sir David Greenaway in order to re-sign the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which has renewed collaborations for another five years.

Mutual benefits
Describing the success of the joint venture, the Deputy Director General of NASG, Dr Song Chaozhi said: “Over the years, our relationship and collaboration with the University of Nottingham and the Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre has been a mutually beneficial success story.

“In the last six years we have seen our partnership go from strength to strength, especially with the renewal of another five years of the NASG-University of Nottingham strategic MoU. I look forward to continuing our collaboration and the achievements of new goals!”

Dr Xiaolin Meng, UK Director of the Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre added: “We have built a number of remarkable milestone achievements between the University of Nottingham and NASG. Since our first NASG CEO Training Course, we have trained around 200 leading Chinese surveying and mapping company leaders, government technical leaders and various NASG personnel here at Nottingham. It has led to a complete positive transformation of many companies, a good number of which are now listed companies in China.”

Smart Cities
The Sino-UK Geospatial Engineering Centre also secured Global Partnership Fund money from the UK government to deliver a major UK-China Workshop on Big Geospatial Data and Smart Cities, which is taking place at Nottingham University Ningbo Campus later this month.

For more details about The University of Nottingham’s work with China in geospatial engineering, contact Dr Xiaolin Meng, on

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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham has 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with a “distinct” approach to internationalisation, which rests on those full-scale campuses in China and Malaysia, as well as a large presence in its home city.’ (Times Good University Guide 2016). It is also one of the most popular universities in the UK among graduate employers and the winner of ‘Research Project of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2014. It is ranked in the world’s top 75 by the QS World University Rankings 2015/16, and 8th in the UK by research power according to the Research Excellence Framework 2014. It has been voted the world’s greenest campus for three years running, according to Greenmetrics Ranking of World Universities.

Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, its biggest-ever fundraising campaign, is delivering the University’s vision to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. More news…

Story credits

For more details about The University of Nottingham’s work with China in geospatial engineering, contact Dr Xiaolin Meng, on or tel: +44 (0)115 84 66029

Nick King  

Nick King - Marketing and Communications Manager, Energy Research Accelerator (ERA)

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 74 86727 Location: Coates Building, Faculty of Engineering, University Park Nottingham

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Published Date
Friday 27th July 2012

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