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Xidian holds 2021 Chinese-Foreign University Presidents Forum

Time: Nov 3, 2021

       On October 30, the Chinese-Foreign University Presidents Forum, one of the events to celebrate the 90th anniversary of Xidian University (XDU), was held at Xi'an Electronics Valley via video link. Themed "Higher Education in the Era of Intelligence", the forum invited 12 university presidents to deliver keynote speeches, centering on opportunities and challenges faced by higher education in the era of intelligence. To call upon united efforts by universities globally to face challenges in the era of intelligence, Xi’an Consensus was released at the end of the forum. Presidents from over 50 universities and some well-known middle schools both in China and abroad attended the forum.

1大图

Xidian University held Xidan holds 2021 Chinese-Foreign University Presidents Forum on October 30, 2021

President YANG Zongkai of Xidian University said in his welcoming remarks that with the advent of the era of intelligence, universities should actively seek, accurately recognize, and scientifically respond to changes brought by technologies; reshape new education governance, and capabilities to serve social and national development. He emphasized the need for international cooperation and shared Xidian’s efforts and achievements in the process of implementing “AI+ education” initiative.

Around the theme, 12 university presidents from home and abroad elaborated on their exploration and practice in talent training, scientific research, and cultural exchange in the era of intelligence.

3张军校长报告

Speech by Academician ZHANG Jun, President of Beijing Institute of Technology, China

ZHANG Jun, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and President of Beijing Institute of Technology (BIT), expounded the concept of smart education around three aspects: educational reform, connotation of smart education, and BIT’s practice. Besides, he proposed the technology-driven approaches for comprehensive talent development with the aim to train more high-level talents with complex capabilities and strategic scientist potential.

4赫瑞瓦特校长报告

Speech by Professor Richard A Williams, President of Heriot-Watt University, UK

Richard A Williams, President of Heriot-Watt University in the UK, believed that a sustainable smart society was a key solution to the complexity and uncertainty of our times. Goal-driven leadership will be our best bet for rewriting the rules related to education, human resource management, marketing, engineering, and governance.

5毛军发校长报告

Speech by Academician MAO Junfa, Vice President of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China

According to MAO Junfa, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Vice President of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, AI had demonstrated powerful data processing capabilities in various fields. Education was undergoing profound changes driven by AI in disciplines such as languages and mathematics. Therefore, Mao suggested that universities reform their talent training systems through AI technologies to cultivate innovative interdisciplinary talents.

6斯蒂文森理工大学校长报告

Speech by Professor Nariman Farvardin, President of Stevens Institute of Technology, USA

Nariman Farvardin, President of Stevens Institute of Technology in the USA, held that technological progress determined the pace of social development, with the ability to revolutionize various industries, including education. To increase the impact of education in society, technology must be adopted to improve life quality, accelerate economic development, and empower people.

7杨宗凯校长报告

Speech by Professor YANG Zongkai, President of Xidian University, China

In the speech of President YANG Zongkai, he pointed out that under the background of great changes centered on information technology, technology drove profound changes in higher education patterns, roles of society and universities. We should actively and scientifically respond to the new challenges, reshape the education support system suitable for the era of intelligence, and further open up universities, creating a new space for international cooperation among universities.

8早稻田大学校长报告

Speech by Professor Aiji Tanaka, President of Waseda University, Japan

Aiji Tanaka, President of Waseda University in Japan, introduced their experience in opening "Intelligent Systems Engineering" lectures for the public, and the establishment of the "AI Robotics Institute" for breakthroughs in cognitive robotics and deep learning technologies.

9郭东明校长报告

Speech by Academician GUO Dongming, President of Dalian University of Technology, China

GUO Dongming, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and President of Dalian University of Technology, shared the practice by the University in grasping the opportunities brought by the technological revolution, promoting interdisciplinary and deep integration, bringing AI into classes, and enhancing the ability of comprehensive talent cultivation through international exchanges and cooperation.

10卡利亚里大学校长报告

Speech by Professor Francesco Mola, Rector of the University of Cagliari, Italy

Francesco Mola, Rector of the University of Cagliari in Italy, emphasized the use of AI and multi-biometric recognition to promote online learning at all stages of university education. Special training courses should be set for professionals and other workers committed to lifelong learning to meet individual needs.

11南京邮电大学校长报告

Speech by Professor YE Meilan, President of Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications, China

YE Meilan, President of Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications, stated that a university should be developed in line with national strategic needs. She introduced the practice by the University in creating an S&T innovation system of information materials, information devices, information systems, information networks, and information applications, to help cultivate advanced technological talents in the context of rapid information technology development.

12法兰克福高等研究院报告

Speech by Prof. Dr. Volker Lindenstruth, Chairman of Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies, Germany

In his speech, Volker Lindenstruth, Chairman of Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies in Germany, shared the research results in disciplines such as fluid mechanics, heavy ion physics, seismology, medicine, and COVID-19, and showed the application of AI in different fields such as epidemic tracing and treatment evaluation.

13海南大学校长报告

Speech by Academician LUO Qingming, President of Hainan University, China

   LUO Qingming, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and President of Hainan University, underlined the ability of serving regional development was gradually becoming a core indicator for modern universities. According to him, Hainan University fully served national strategies and local socio-economic development needs. It had set up 7 collaborative innovation centers in terms of free trade port development and institutional innovation, ecological civilization, cultural tourism, tropical efficient agriculture, marine S&T, One Health, and information technology. Currently, it was striving to develop initiatives and practices to support and pioneer the development of the Hainan Free Trade Port.

14复旦大学副校长报告

Speech by Professor XU Lei, Vice President of Fudan University, China

 XU Lei, Vice President of Fudan University, pointed out that the current application of AI in education lagged many other fields, and that educational reform and the use of AI in education needed to be accelerated. In this era of intelligence, talents were required to possess higher-level mindsets such as critical thinking, logical thinking, divergent thinking, and innovative thinking. Therefore, it was important to personalize talent development, explore diversified paths, and promote the construction of an interdisciplinary and multi-level education system.

西安共识

Release of Xi'an Consensus

In the end, the presidents from Chinese and foreign universities, around the theme of the Forum, actively and deeply discussed the challenges faced by higher education in the era of intelligence and the ways to adapt to the changes of the times for common development. All the attendees reached Xi'an Consensus. Besides, it was proposed that Chinese and foreign universities strengthen international cooperation in addressing the challenges and explore education philosophy, teaching methods, and resource sharing in an active manner, so as to promote the common development of higher education in the era of intelligence.

In this forum, presidents at home and abroad gathered online to discuss future education in the era of intelligence, making positive contributions to promoting cooperation among universities in talent training, scientific research, cultural exchange, and social service, jointly exploring the cultivation of top innovative talents with global competence, and building a community with a shared future for mankind.

 

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