The City University of Macau hosted the Inauguration Ceremony of the Global Consortium of Metropolitan Universities cum Presidents’ Forum today (24) at the Taipa campus. with the theme of “Joint Effort to a Shared Success: Sustainable Development of Universities and Cities”. The event aimed to strengthen cooperation among member universities and to stimulate multi-dimensional integration and interaction between universities and cities. It was held online and on-site and attracted university leaders and experts from over 10 universities in Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Macao, Malaysia, mainland China, and Taiwan to take part.
Director Xu Ting of the Department of Education and Youth Affairs of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Macao SAR, Deputy Director Teng Sio Hong of Education and Youth Development Bureau, Rector Jun Liu of the City University of Macau, and Vice President Gu Hongliang of East China Normal University officiated the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
In his opening address, Rector Liu, founding chairman of the Global Consortium of Metropolitan Universities (GCMU) Executive Council, said that the Consortium was initiated by the City University of Macau (CityU) and launched in collaboration with the Hong Kong Metropolitan University (HKMU), the Shenzhen University (SZU), the Guangzhou University (GU), and the Dongguan City College. Rector Liu said, “GCMU aims to bring together world-renowned metropolitan universities to establish a global network of innovative, applied, and international metropolitan universities, promoting comprehensive and sustainable academic exchanges and cooperation among member universities. Moving forward, GCMU will utilize and complement the strengths of its member universities, promote resource sharing and knowledge transfer, and jointly advance the sustainable development of higher education and their cities.”
Mr. Teng Sio Hong, Deputy Director of the MSAR Government Education and Youth Development Bureau, congratulated member universities. As he pointed out, metropolitan universities carry distinctive education characteristics which serve social and economic development needs. Talent cultivation and academic strengths will be strengthened through international exchanges and cooperation, spurring global economic and social development. He said that the establishment of the Consortium reflected the needs of universities for high-level international exchange and cooperation and has fully demonstrated the commitment of each member university to nurture talents and to serve the society. He hoped that the member universities will work together to build a broader platform for mutual development and closer cooperation where the higher education sector will meaningfully contribute to a society’s social and economic development.
The first meeting of the Executive Council of the Global Consortium of Metropolitan Universities was held in the morning. Rector Liu announced key items, including the list of founding members and the GCMU charter, endorsed by the Executive Council. The meeting put forward a work plan for 2023. These items included: enhancing the GCMU charter; strengthening its strategic positioning and operation model; eligibility requirements for new members; carrying out cooperation projects; and developing a dedicated website. The Executive Council also confirmed the organizing unit of the following University Presidents’ Forum.
With a theme of “Joint Effort to a Shared Success: Sustainable Development of Universities and Cities,” the Presidents’ Forum invited leaders of the member universities to share their insights on three topics: “Multi-dimensional Integration and Interaction between Universities and Cities,” “Exchange and Innovation of Universities in the Post-pandemic Era,” and “Strategic Collaboration among Metropolitan Universities.” The member universities include East China Normal University (mainland China), Shenzhen University (mainland China), Nantong University (mainland China), Myongji University (Korea), Guangzhou University (mainland China), Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Fuzhou University, Tamkang University (Taiwan), Dongguan City College, Beijing City University, University Tunku Abdul Rahman (Malaysia), and Tokyo City University (Japan).
The first session, themed “Multi-dimensional Integration and Interaction between Universities and Cities”, was chaired by Vice President Gu Hongliang of East China Normal University. Vice President Zhang Xueji of Shenzhen University, President Shi Weidong of Nantong University, and Dean Yoon Jongbin of the Office of International Affairs of Myongji University commented on talent cultivation, industry-university collaboration and innovation development, and the collaborative development between universities and cities.
The second session, themed “Exchange and Innovation of Universities in the Post-pandemic Era,” was chaired by Rector Jun Liu of the City University of Macau. Vice President Fu Jiyang of Guangzhou University, Vice President Yang Huanghao of Fuzhou University, Vice President Chen Hsiao-Chuan for International Affairs of Tamkang University, and Director Shi Xuemei (Mainland and International Affairs), on behalf of Provost Kwan Ching-ping of Hong Kong Metropolitan University, shared their thoughts on the topic. The speakers shared the work completed and results achieved by their universities during the COVID-19 pandemic and discussed the countermeasures taken during the pandemic and plans to explore sustainable development in the post-pandemic era. The group also addressed how to accelerate the development pace in the post-pandemic era and recover the international cooperation in research, talent and student exchange, and visits that have been halted due to the pandemic.
The last session, themed “Strategic Collaboration among Metropolitan Universities,” was chaired by Executive President Li Shuying of Dongguan City University. Executive Vice President Tian Peiyuan of Beijing City University, Vice President Prof. Ts Faidz Bin Abdul Rahman of University Tunku Abdul Rahman, and President Chitoshi Miki of Tokyo City University shared their insights on the theme, the positioning of metropolitan universities, the characteristics of university operations, and made valuable suggestions on how to carry out in-depth cooperation among the member universities. All members expressed their desire to leverage GCMU as an international platform which facilitates in-depth exchanges in research, education, and collaboration.
In his concluding speech, Rector Liu encouraged the member universities to strengthen the cooperation between universities and their cities. He encouraged to use comparative data to explore the joint development between universities and their cities. He hopes the establishment of the Consortium will generate a broader and richer experience for cooperation and interaction among its members.
Other attendees from CityU included Vice Rector Kong Fanqing, Vice Rector Zhou Wanlei, Vice Rector Ip Kuai Peng, Vice Rector Chee Seong Chin, Pro-Rector So Kam Hung, University Consultant Ip Peng Kin, Pro-Rector Chu Te Lin. Academic members and students also took part in the event.