Partnership with Shanghai goes from strength to strength

30 May 2017

The University of Waikato and SISU have commemorated their 20-year partnership.

The University of Waikato and Shanghai International Studies University (SISU) marked more than 20 years of partnership this month with the announcement of a joint Research Centre that will focus on China and Oceania Studies, further enhancing research collaboration and staff exchange between the two universities.

The Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment, Hon Paul Goldsmith joined the celebrations in Shanghai, which also signalled the University of Waikato’s transition to ‘SISU Strategic Partner’, the next step in a partnership that dates back to 1995.

SISU students commenced the SISU-University of Waikato joint programme in 1997, spending time studying in both China and New Zealand. To date, over 1,500 students have graduated from this programme, focusing on Management, Arts and Social Sciences. A joint Master of Laws (LLM) degree will commence in 2018.

At the Research Centre’s Shanghai launch, University of Waikato Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Alister Jones said that the relationship between the two universities had gone from strength to strength.

“We were one of the first joint programmes in Shanghai and the first for New Zealand. We have been proactive in crossing boundaries, being innovative and finding solutions that meet the needs of the future. The more than 1500 SISU graduates who have obtained a University of Waikato degree are testament to this programme’s success. Our relationship with SISU will only continue to grow,” says Professor Jones.

The decades-long relationship between the two universities has been characterised by collaboration and true partnership. Exchanges and study abroad programmes ensure a continued flow of students and staff in both directions, with both institutions working to expand the range of course offerings and academic pursuits.

The SISU-University of Waikato New Zealand Research Centre will build on these foundations, as an interdisciplinary centre for research excellence that will be the first of its kind in Shanghai. The centre will support joint research programmes, joint PhDs, staff and student exchange and resulting publications. The centre will complement the University of Waikato’s established research activities in China in computer science, education, freshwater and marine science and management.

“We’ve been working with SISU to extend what we can offer students from both universities,” says Professor Jones. “The announcement of a joint Research Centre reflects this shared commitment to excellence, learning and collaboration – our longstanding partnership with SISU is a relationship worth celebrating.”