UNESCO-ICHEI opens a new chapter of international cooperation in higher education in Arab countriesMarch 27, 2021
On March 26, 2021, the International Centre for Higher Education Innovation under the auspices of UNESCO (hereafter as “ICHEI”) held a meeting with the Collaborative Innovation Center for Arab Studies Jointly Sponsored by Provinces and the Ministry of Education (Ningxia University) (hereafter as “Center for Arab Studies”) and the Wisdom Palace Group. Strategic Cooperation Framework Agreements have been signed during the meeting.
Guests present at the meeting were: LI Ming, Director of ICHEI, HAN Wei, Executive Deputy Director of ICHEI, WANG Guobin, Deputy Director of ICHEI, heads of departments of ICHEI, WANG Yujiong, Deputy Party Secretary of Ningxia University, LI Shaoxian, Director of China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University and Consultant to ICHEI’s West-Asia and Africa Programme Office, LI Haiyan, Party Secretary of China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University, ZHANG Qianjin, Executive Director of China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University, ZHANG Shirong, Chairman of Wisdom Palace Group, and MA Yongliang, Vice Chairman of Wisdom Palace Group.
In the welcoming remarks, LI Ming pointed out that the Center for Arab Studies and Ningxia University take the lead in Arabic talent training in China and research on the Arab region. ICHEI has plans to carry out international cooperation projects in higher education in the Arab region. There are many opportunities for cooperation between the two sides.
WANG Yujiong pointed out that Ningxia University is a comprehensive “211 university” with a history as long as Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. The University wishes to cooperate with Southern University of Science and Technology (hereafter as “SUSTech”) and promote discipline development.
ZHANG Qianjin mentioned that the Center for Arab Studies is jointly built by Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region and the Ministry of Education. The Center has three pillars. First, the China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University focuses on training interdisciplinary and internationalized talents. Second, the Center, as a world-class think tank dedicated to Arabic research, serves the country’s diplomatic strategies. Third, the Center utilizes the China-Arab States Expo to promote economic cooperation.
LI Shaoxian pointed out that the China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University emphasizes the training of high-level talents, and it has an extensive network with universities in Arab states, contributing to China’s national strategy. ICHEI is a good platform for international cooperation in higher education, and two parties together will complement each other.
ZHANG Shirong mentioned that Wisdom Palace Group has built an extensive user network through its cultural tourism, culture + Internet, international Chinese language education, and international investment. It also has extensive connections with Arabian governments and cultural and education industries. ZHANG wished to deepen the cooperation with ICHEI, co-share networks and resources, and contribute to cooperation in higher education in Arab countries.
HAN Wei introduced SUSTech’s faculty and student profiles, talent introduction and management system, and some innovations in admissions. She expresses that she is looking forward to consolidating the cooperation between Ningxia University and SUSTech.
BI Xiaohan, Assistant Director and Chief of the West-Asia and Africa Programme Office of ICHEI, introduced the collaboration in higher education in the Arabian region. FENG Siyuan, Chief of IIOE Management Centre of ICHEI introduced IIOE projects.
LI Ming emphasized some key points of the cooperation with Ningxia University, Center for Arab Studies, and Wisdom Palace Group. First, allowing LI Shaoxian to play a more strategic role as a consultant to the West-Asia and Africa Programme Office. Second, increasing ICHEI’s influence in the Arab region through cooperation with Ningxia University’s China-Arab Research Institute and China-Arab national think tanks. Third, working with Wisdom Palace Group to implement the Arabization of IIOE, courses, and training products. Fourth, promote the cooperation between Ningxia University and SUSTech.
LI Shaoxian echoed with LI Ming. First, supporting the cooperation on Arabization between ICHEI and Wisdom Palace Group. Second, as the consultant to ICHEI, he will contribute to projects in both West-Asia and Africa region as well as the Asia-Pacific region. Third, he will promote the cooperation between Ningxia University and SUSTech.
Later, ICHEI and Center for Arab Studies signed a Strategic Cooperation Framework Agreement. Both parties will work together in the fields of the Arabicization of online teacher training products, sharing networks of higher education partners in the Middle East, and joint research and knowledge production. In the future, both parties will cooperate by sharing online courses in Arabic in ICT and teacher education, carrying out teacher training in the Arab region, establishing contact channels with universities in the Arab region, and jointly organizing activities in the field of higher education.
ICHEI signed a Strategic Cooperation Framework Agreement with Wisdom Palace Group. In January this year, Wisdom Palace visited ICHEI for the first time, laying a solid foundation for the signing of the strategic cooperation agreement. Two parties will work together on the development of the Arabic version of the IIOE platform, translation and design of online course resources, teacher training in the Arab region, sharing of higher education partner network in the Middle East, and the introduction of education development fund projects, etc.
ICHEI will open a new chapter of cooperation in higher education in Arab countries by cooperating with the Center for Arab Studies and Wisdom Palace Group, contributing to the Belt and Road Initiative in the field of higher education and facilitating the digital transformation with ICT tools and the popularization of higher education in Arab countries.
Collaborative Innovation Center for Arab Studies Jointly Sponsored by Provinces and the Ministry of Education (Ningxia University): approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education and inaugurated on December 4, 2018, it is the first world-class think tank sponsored by provinces and the education ministry dedicating to Arab countries. It is a council member of the Belt and Road International Think Tank and a high-level unit of national and regional research of the Ministry of Education. Through in-depth research on the politics, economy, culture and society of the Middle East region and countries, the Center for Arab Studies strengthens the cultivation of high-quality talents, aiming to build a new type of high-level think tank with first-class domestic and world influence in the field of Arab Studies, and a first-class talent training base for Arabic in China.
Wisdom Palace Group: it was established in September 2011, consisting of four core businesses: cultural tourism, Internet +, international Chinese language education, and international investment. It has 12 subsidiaries, and its core businesses face countries along the Belt and Road. It has 8 core platforms: Arab cultural exchange platform, digital publishing platform, comic and video production, international Chinese language education platform, intelligent translation platform, digital database, international exchange platform, and digital tourism platform. It promotes the quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative, improves the influence of Chinese culture overseas, and it aims to become a “Culture +” comprehensive international company.