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The International Conference of “EU-China Research and Innovation Partnership: New Pathways for Sustainable Urban Development in China’s Medium-sized Cities” was held at Sun Yat-sen University

Last updated :2017-06-27

Source: School of Geography and Planning
Written by: Shi Chenyi
Edited by: Wang Dongmei

On June 16th-18th, 2017, the International Conference of “EU-China Research and Innovation Partnership: New Pathways for Sustainable Development in China’s Medium-sized Cities (MEDIUM)” was held on Guangzhou South Campus of Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU). The conference was hosted by French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and organized by School of Geography and Planning of SYSU.

On the afternoon of June 16th, just before the opening ceremony, Professor Xiao Haipeng, Vice President of SYSU, welcomed Mr. Bertrand Furno, Consul General of France in Guangzhou; Mr. Laurent Bochereau, Minister Counsellor, Head of Science, Technology and Environment Section at the Delegation of the European Union to China; Mr. Nicolas Gherardi, Consul for Scientific and Educational Cooperation of the Consulate General of France in Guangzhou; and Professor Natacha Aveline of CNRS, Scientific Coordinator of MEDIUM, to discuss the cooperation and exchange between SYSU and universities in France as well as other EU countries. Professor Xu Xueqiang, senior professor of School of Geography and Planning and former Director General of the Department of Education of Guangdong Province; Ms. Li Yongjie, Chief Planner of Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of Guangdong Province; and Professor Xue Desheng, Dean of the School of Geography and Planning of SYSU also attended the meeting.

At the opening ceremony, Vice President Xiao Haipeng welcomed the guests on behalf of the University, and introduced SYSU’s history, campus construction, development and international cooperation and exchange. He said that the Pearl River Delta region is worth studying. The development of the Pearl River Delta has made great achievements, while cities in this region are facing new challenges in sustainable development and transformation, therefore, it is of vital importance to hold this conference.
 

Vice President Xiao Haipeng meeting with Mr. Bertrand Furno, Consul General of France in Guangzhou
 

Mr. Bertrand Furno elaborated on the development and transformation of China’s cities in terms of city size, population structure, talents and technology. He stressed the importance of environmental protection in the process of urban development. He also said that France and even the Europe are willing to provide high-level and sustainable solutions for poverty-stricken areas in China. And the “EU-China Research and Innovation Partnership: New Pathways for Sustainable Development in China’s Medium-sized Cities” will be a good model for science and technology cooperation between China and EU.

Mr. Laurent Bochereau said that since the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and EU in 1975, bilateral relations have made considerable progress, extending from economic cooperation to innovative cooperation in talents, science and technology, etc. As one of the EU-China innovative cooperation projects, the MEDIUM project , supported by the EU, aims at deepening the understanding on Chinese cities of European young researchers, and thus consolidating long-term cooperation between the two sides.

Ms. Li Yongjie emphasized the importance of sustainable development to China's urban development, and introduced the efforts made in urban sustainable development of Guangdong Province.

Professor Xue Desheng introduced the development, disciplinary construction, research achievement, international exchange and cooperation of the School of Geography and Planning. He said that the school will explore future academic cooperation and exchange opportunities with European scientific research institutions and universities.

Professor Zhou Chunshan, the scientific coordinator of MEDIUM in SYSU, introduced the process of the project in Zhuhai and expressed gratitude to all partners.

On June 17th and 18th, professors and city planners from China and Europe discussed urban sustainable development issues extensively by making academic reports on aging, social inclusion, urban governance, sustainable development, public participation in urban planning and other aspects, with a multi-disciplinary approach of geography, political science, economics, sociology, computer science and environmental science.

The “EU-China Research and Innovation Partnership: New Pathways for Sustainable Urban Development in China’s Medium-sized Cities” is led by French National Center for Scientific Research, in cooperation with Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne, Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia, Aix en Provence Political Institute, Lausanne University, Neuchâtel University, Spatial Foresight GMBH, Sun Yat-sen University, Hangzhou Normal university and Shanxi Datong University. The project is supported by the European Union (EuropeAid – ICI+ programme). The main goal of the MEDIUM project is to study the dynamics of Chinese urbanization, focusing on medium-sized cities - Hangzhou, Zhuhai, Datong - from various aspects: urban governance and strategic planning, innovative clusters, land and housing policy, urban mobility, ICT and smart city, migrant workers' inclusion, etc.