University of Sheffield strengthens partnerships with China

Professor Sir Burnett and Professor Zhang

The University of Sheffield has signed an agreement to strengthen its research partnerships with China’s Xiamen University to address some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed by the University of Sheffield’s President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Keith Burnett, and Professor Zhang, President of Xiamen University this week (19 June 2018).

The signing in Sheffield followed a visit by a delegation from the University of Sheffield in April to Xiamen University.

Researchers from both institutions are collaborating with each other, with Professor Simon Foster, Director of the world-leading Florey Institute at the University of Sheffield, working with Professor Aidong Han, School of Life Sciences at Xiamen University, to tackle one of the biggest threats to global health - antimicrobial resistance.

Professor Foster is hosting one of Prof Han’s PhD students in Sheffield funded on a British Council Scholarship and a joint funding bid has also recently been submitted under the UK-China AMR call.

As well as signing the MoU, Professor Zhang participated in an international symposium held at the University’s Diamond building. Professor Zhang, a eminent Professor in Physics, gave a presentation at the International Symposium on the Science and Technology of Lighting, which aims to share and exchange the latest progress on the science and technology of lighting.

Sir Keith said: “I am delighted to welcome Professor Zhang to Sheffield to strengthen the relationship between our two institutions. To be able to collaborate effectively with another similar-minded university with a global reputation, reflects our desire to work together to help our countries address their most pressing challenges.

"Xiamen University has a long tradition of openness and vision in its scholarship, and I am proud that this is now being expressed through scientific partnership in areas which are so important to the people of both of our nations."

Xiamen University, established in 1921 by renowned patriotic overseas Chinese leader Mr. Tan Kah Kee, is the first Chinese university founded by an overseas Chinese. The University was placed among the world's top 400 institutions in various world university rankings, such as THES, QS, US News and ARWU.

Professor Zhang’s research focus has been on semiconductor materials and devices. He has led many research projects funded by the State Major Program for Basic Researches (the 973 Program), the High-Tech Development Program (the 863 Program) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), achieving significant results in wide band-gap semiconductor heterostructures and devices, semiconductor optoelectronic devices and spintronics.

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Harry Clulow
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University of Sheffield
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h.clulow@sheffield.ac.uk