The France-Taiwan Higher Education Forum wrapped up July 9 in the northern French city of Reims, bringing together about 200 scholars from 104 universities to foster closer academic collaboration between the two sides.
Held at the University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne, the event helped attendees get up to speed on the latest tertiary education policies and trends in Taiwan and France. It also featured seminars on such topics as building strategic alliances among universities, promoting innovation and stimulating student mobility.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Su Hueh-jen, president of National Cheng Kung University in southern Taiwan’s Tainan City, said the two sides enjoy long-standing education ties, with 59 Taiwan and 200 French universities concluding more than 480 cooperation agreements since 1966.
Ample opportunities exist for deepening this robust collaboration as educators and policymakers on both sides are targeting the development of cutting-edge sectors, Su said, citing Taiwan’s five-plus-two innovative industries initiative and France’s Industry of the Future project.
Five-plus-two covers the biotech and pharmaceuticals, green energy, national defense, smart machinery and Internet of Things sectors, as well as the circular economy and a new paradigm for agricultural development. Industry of the Future encourages firms to use digital solutions to transform business models.
According to Su, since higher education institutions play a vital role in promoting industrial transformation and cultivating new technologies, Taiwan and French universities should seek to expand exchanges on these fronts.
In his opening remarks, University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne President Guillaume Gelle lauded Taiwan’s consistent investment in R&D, noting that related outlays exceed 3 percent of gross domestic product annually. The forum can serve as a platform for enhancing research tie-ups across a wide range of fields spanning agricultural food science, biotechnology, medicine and smart machinery, he said.
According to the Ministry of Education, following the conclusion of the forum participating MOE officials, university heads and academics are scheduled to travel to Belgium for a roundtable discussion with local counterparts. Set to take place July 12, the meeting will cover subjects including challenges and opportunities in the internationalization of higher education, cooperation between enterprises and universities, as well as partnerships among Taiwan and Belgian tertiary institutions.
Source: Taiwan Today (https://taiwantoday.tw/news.php?unit=10&post=137744)