In Sept 2017, China launched its double first-class university strategy -- coordinating and promoting the construction of world-class universities and first-class subject building -- through which the country seeks to significantly increase the number of such campuses and disciplines by 2050.
This national strategy, also known as the double world-class project, is viewed as a move to boost China’s long-term competitiveness and development. It is a performance-based initiative to enable universities to optimize their disciplinary structures, by recruiting talented scholars and scientists both from within China and abroad.
Fudan University, Jilin University, Northeast Normal University and Lanzhou University have teamed up with Inner Mongolia University (IMU) to help the IMU speed up its own upgrade into a double first-class campus through collaborative innovation in education and research.
IMU officials said it has implemented the relevant requirements, formulated implementation plans, implemented cooperation projects, broadened cooperation fields, improved cooperation effectiveness and accelerated its overall transition into becoming a world-class institution.
In accordance with guidelines from the Ministry of Education, IMU has mainly focused on helping to establish and develop its own distinctive and characteristic range of subject groups, strengthen the construction of a series of research facilities, promote the collaborative innovation of education and research and deepen cooperation with its partner universities with the objective of also serving local areas and building up local areas.
The goal of counterpart cooperation is clearly defined as: to enhance the comprehensive strength of IMU biology and ethnology. This will be done through cooperation between the biology disciplines of Fudan University, Jilin University, Northeast Normal University, Lanzhou University, the ethnology disciplines of Lanzhou University and the corresponding disciplines of IMU.
At the same time, a number of research facilities – including a research platform for reproductive regulation and breeding of grassland livestock, a research platform for the biology of grassland and indigenous crops and an historical and cultural information platform for northern ethnic groups – are planned to be built.
In addition, IMU has plans to work closely with these colleges and universities to develop grassland ecological animal husbandry, cultural tourism and other leading local industries, spread the influence of its pedagogical disciplines and further enhance its ability to serve local economic and social development and industrial transformation and upgrading.
Combining the academic resources of the partner universities with its development needs, last year IMU conducted full exchanges and in-depth discussions with four universities.
The parties mapped out and determined a cooperation program and signed counterpart cooperation agreements.
IMU officials said the associate universities have consistently indicated that they will fully cooperate and learn from each other in terms of development planning, system construction and management operations.
Other areas of mutual cooperation include developing faculties, academic disciplines, scientific research, training staff, international exchanges and cooperation, relying on their respective disciplinary advantages, talent advantages and regional advantages, so as to achieve cooperation, sharing and win-win cooperation.
The IMU has focused on cultivating and developing its own characteristic subject groups and strengthening the construction of large-scale series research facilities. It has focused on promoting collaborative innovation in industrial production, education and research -- and actively implementing the specific contents of the counterpart cooperation agreements.
The different departments of the school have cooperated with the corresponding departments of these universities.
With biology, ethnology, ecology and the Chinese language and literature as the main subjects, the IMU has worked within its disciplines to improve the pertinence and effectiveness of the counterpart cooperation.
IMU has studied and investigated successful experiences in the reform, information construction and construction of research facilities. It has conducted performance evaluations of the management of the academic committees of counterpart universities -- and co-hosted a seminar on "first-class undergraduate education and teaching reform" with its associate campuses.
In addition, the IMU participated in the founding conference for the China-Mongolia University Alliance sponsored by Northeast Normal University and the International Exchange Forum of Belt and Road Education sponsored by Fudan University.
It carried out cooperative research with Lanzhou University School of Grassland Agricultural Science and Technology and the National Key Laboratory of Grassland Agricultural Ecosystem, on global climate change and responding to and managing the degradation of the grasslands.
Initiated by Jilin University, the four counterpart cooperative universities jointly held the first academic seminar on biology in IMU.
Expert groups from Fudan University and Lanzhou University have conducted research and demonstrations on the construction plans to establish a number of research facilities at IMU -- and assisted IMU to successfully complete its mid-term self-evaluation work in its double first-class construction.