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 In Focus

Experiencing the dynamics of research and education in China

Published 2000-01-25

In 2003 Professor Deliang Chen, Regional Climate Group at the Department of Earth Sciences, Göteborg University obtained STINT support for a project entitled “Weather regimes in a changing climate: how does it affect soil erosion in Loess Plateau of China? The project receives an annual funding of SEK 300 000 within the Institutional Grants Programme.

The project is a joint project between China and Sweden. It is initiated and coordinated by the Department of Earth Sciences at Göteborg University, and the Department of Resources and Environmental Studies of Beijing Normal University (BNU) and China Meteorological Administration (CMA) are the three participating organizations.

As is well known, China is experiencing a dramatic change in almost every aspect, including research and higher education during the last few years. Through the intensive cooperation during the last two years we have had a fantastic opportunity to feel the pulse of the changes in China. Already in early 2005 as many as nine Swedish researchers and students have been in China associated with this project. Six Chinese scientists visited us in Sweden. Through these personal contacts we have learnt a lot from China. We really feel being inspired and motivated by this joint project! For details of the project, please go to the project homepage at

Not only joint research

Although the project is designed mainly as a research project and we do have some joint researches going on, the flexibility and relatively long term perspective (four years) of the IGP makes it possible to make joint efforts in teaching as well as in establishing long term structures beyond the project. Both we in Sweden and our Chinese partners feel that long term cooperation will benefit us all. Indeed, we have organized some joint courses both at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels and we will continue with these even after the STINT project. Supervision of Ph.D. students both in China and Sweden is another important cooperation area. In addition, we have benefited from the STINT project as a starting point and have worked out several other research proposals. Some of them have been approved by both Chinese and Swedish funding agencies.

Not only enhanced link between the Chinese and Swedish partners

An interesting experience we made is that we can contribute to enhanced communications between our Chinese partners! Within the project we have two Chinese teams. After the project has been started, we recognized that our Chinese partners have practically no communications between them although they are working with similar research topics. We also realized that this is mainly due to culture, tradition and lack of exchange platforms. We thus took initiatives to improve the situation. We did that through actions such as joint workshops, courses, and exchanges of our students, not only just talking. It is very pleasant to see that we could contribute to the creation of new thinking and modes of cooperation. In early 2005 our Chinese partners submitted their first joint proposal!

Deliang Chen
Göteborg University

Senast uppdaterad: 05-12-27 13:59

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