Liverpool’s partnership venture with Xi’an Jiaotong University marks 15 year milestone

Students walking through a tunnel at XJTLU

Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) has celebrated its 15-year anniversary by launching three new academies and making its innovative lifelong-learning platform, the XJTLU Learning Mall open to the public.

The University of Liverpool opened XJTLU in the world heritage city of Suzhou, China, in partnership with Xi’an-Jiaotong University, in 2006 – starting with one building and 164 students.

Today, with 18,000 students from around the globe, XJTLU is the largest joint-venture university in China.  It boasts more than 1,000 staff from approximately 50 countries and regions. The University’s alumni study and work at highly ranked universities and many are employed by world-leading companies.  XJTLU’s teaching, laboratory, research and support facilities have won architectural awards and continue to expand. Its location in Suzhou provides opportunities for business cooperation, internships and graduate employment.

Key to its success is its unique blend of educational styles, enabling students to become internationally minded citizens.

Professor Youmin Xi, Executive President of XJTLU said: “XJTLU took reference from the flexibility offered by the American education system, the emphasis on a robust quality control system from the British system, and the focus on building fundamentals commonly seen in the Chinese system.”

Jeff Blackford, Dean for XJTLU at the University of Liverpool, said:  “There are a number of reasons  for XJTLU’s success – the vision and commitment of the founding partners, the backing from, and location in, Suzhou, and the drive and ideas of XJTLU and University of Liverpool colleagues, many of whom have worked with XJTLU for many years to develop their programmes and research projects. 

“The main factor, though, is the students.   XJTLU recruits hard-working, intelligent, dedicated students willing to learn and to think differently, who co-create this unique institution.

“Most students have the option of moving to Liverpool after their second year, and the 2+2 programme is a great opportunity for students to learn in two countries, and gain their skills and knowledge from experts at two Universities.  Students who study in Liverpool become internationally-minded citizens, able to thrive in different cultures.  Over 300 PhD students are currently co-supervised between the two Universities; a unique contribution to research and innovation.”

New academies

May saw XJTLU launch its Academy of Future Education, encompassing research and education activities, training for educators in and outside of the University, support for students’ educational growth, and a platform for online and onsite lifelong learning. The Academy includes the Learning Mall, which enables XJTLU and a range of external partners to access online learning and training resources.

The University has also recently launched an Academy of Film and Creative Technology, combining XJTLU’s School of Film and TV Arts in Suzhou and its School of Cultural Technology at Taicang.  In the Academy’s second phase, the XJTLU-Enlight Film School in Yangzhou will be added.

In April, the University and Jiangsu Industrial Technology Research Institute (JITRI) jointly established the XJTLU-JITRI Academy of Industrial Technology, offering masters and PhD programmes to develop professionals with industry and innovation skills who can lead across disciplines.

Developing education-societal ecosystems

XJTLU’s future plans include additional exploration of online-onsite educational models and expansion to other sites like China’s Greater Bay Area (Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau), where the University plans to establish the XIPU Innovation and Education College (GBA).

“In the future, XJTLU will redefine its social functions, acting as the catalyst and connector between the school and society,” says Professor Xi. “It will leverage the vast resources available to create a new educational ecosystem that promotes lifelong learning, innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Click here for more information about XJTLU.