European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibor Navracsics Visits Fudan

On November 15th, Mr. Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, visited Fudan University after attending the Fourth Meeting of EU-China High-Level People-to-People Dialogue. Ms. Jiao Yang, Secretary of the Party Committee of Fudan, and President Xu Ningsheng, welcomed the guests, and introduced to them the past exchanges between Fudan and the European Union (EU).

During his visit to Fudan, Mr. Tibor Navracsis gave a speech entitled “The Social Role of Education” to an audience of more than 200 students and staff. In his speech, Mr. Navracsics commented on the significance of the EU-China High-Level People-to-People Dialogue and commended Fudan’s contribution in the educational and cultural exchanges between China and the EU.

 Mr. Navracsics stressed that education nowadays played a much more significant social role than in any other period in history. Educational cooperation, especially the cooperation in higher education, could improve cultural recognition and help establish the Sino-Europe bond. As the educational exchanges between China and the EU increased, China became one of the most favored destinations for European students to study abroad, and Chinese students also made up a large proportion of the international students in Europe. Furthermore, there were more and more strategic education cooperation in institutions of China and the EU concerning capacity building, curriculum development and modernization and university governance.

Mr. Navracsics mentioned that Fudan University as one of the 17 Chinese universities participating in the Erasmus Mundus Project (EM) started by the EU in 2014, had played an active role in the educational cooperation between China and Europe. The EM Project has now provided 515 Chinese researchers with scholarships to conduct their research in Europe, and sent more than 200 European researchers to Chinese major educational institutions.

Mr. Navracsics hoped that young scholars in China and Europe could cherish the common values and work together to cope with the global challenges such as poverty, terrorism, and climate change. And he further emphasized that education was the key solution to the problems mentioned above. Mr. Navracsics said that young people should embrace an international perspective and innovative entrepreneurship, make full use of the resources at hand, carry forward the spirit of perseverance and strive to achieve their goals through unremitting efforts.

Fudan as one of the earliest universities in China to study the European Community and the European Union, published the first book in China on European study European Common Market in 1973. And in 1993, the European Studies Center was established at Fudan, aiming to study and teach the issues of Europe’s politics, economy, law, social culture as well as internal and external relations. The center has enjoyed national and international acknowledgement, and three members of the center, Professor Dai Bingran, Professor Chen Zhimin, and Prfessor Ding Chun have been granted the honorary title of “Jean Monnet Chair Professor” by the European Commission.

Under the framework of the EU-China High- Level People-to-People Dialogue, Fudan has been actively expanding its academic and humanistic exchanges with Europe. Currently, Fudan and its EU partner universities have established five Confucius Institutes. And with the effort of Fudan Development Institute, a “Fudan-European Center for China Studies” was set up in Denmark at the University of Copenhagen. Early in November, The Third International Forum on the “New Silk Road” and Sino-European Cooperation was organized and held by China Center for Contemporary World Studies, University of Duisburg-Essen, and the Confucius Institute Metropolis Ruhr.The International Center for Studies of Chinese Civilization at Fudan (ICSCC) has been working with the University of Hamburg in promoting the research program of Sino-Europe study. The Nordic Center Fudan University has been cooperating with more than 20 universities in Northern Europe for more than two decades, and the joint graduate programs of Fudan, Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris and Ecole Normale Superieure are of pioneering significance.

With the continuous development of China and Europe in fields such as politics and economics, the exchanges and cooperation between the two sides have reaped tremendous achievement. To date, Fudan has established university-level partnership with 56 EU universities. From 2015 to 2017, Fudan has received 3,381 students from 26 EU countries, and enrolled many European visiting and researching scholars.

Pictures by: Mu Liang, Wen Chang, and Huang Hao

Source: Fudan News Center

Translated and edited by: Zheng Xintong