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2023: The Year in Review


At ECNU, the year 2023 was marked by transformative change on the campus. This transformative year is exemplified by the university’s research, education, leadership and impact, all of which were driven by a commitment to the scholars, staff and students of the ECNU community.

New campus initiatives set the stage for cross-disciplinary research, which was necessary to understand the world’s most pressing challenges. Scholars and researchers tackled some of the most profound challenges facing humankind. New partners and collaborations have been built this year, which means our students can get access to more academic opportunities. In addition, we hosted a series of high-level meetings to address the most challenging issues and various activities around the campus life. Furthermore, our students, alumni, and faculty were recognized with honors for their achievements and impact in academia.

With the new year approaching, we have compiled all of this year’s news from the ECNU English website, focusing on the stories with the most clicks, but also including the ones that inspired us in 2023 or gave us hope for the new year.

ECNU Student Socities Fair kicks off under cherry trees
In March, ECNU ushers in the most charming season when more than 430 cherry trees are in full bloom. In the meantime, numerous intriguing campus activities arrive with the vibrant spring. ECNU Student Societies Fair has finally returned after three years, attracting many students.

This year, more than 100 Student Societies from the two campuses return to the offline stage. The Student Societies covers 7 categories, including Ideology and Politics, Academy and Technology, Culture and Sports, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Self-discipline and Mutual Assistance, Volunteer Work and Comprehensive Practice, providing a big platform for students to show their styles, exchange ideas and learn from each other.

The first Chinese scientist receive Ruth Patrick Award
On June 5, Liu Dongyan, a researcher from the State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal Research of ECNU, was presented the Ruth Patrick Award in Palma, Spain, by the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO). The award recognizes her outstanding scientific contributions to the study of the causes of green tides in the Yellow Sea.

Researcher Liu has become the first Chinese scientist who has been presented the Ruth Patrick Award since its establishment. This significant moment was witnessed by experts and scholars from 66 countries and regions worldwide.

ECNU's peer-reviewed journal receives high global ranking
The ECNU Review of Education (ECNU ROE) is an international, peer-reviewed journal established by ECNU in  2018. This year, it entered the first quarter on a ranking of global educational academic journals and was being cited for the first time.The ranking is entitled "CiteScore 2022" which was released by Scopus in June, the world's largest literature abstract and citation database. 

The ECNU ROE is an open-access journal seeking to facilitate in-depth dialogues among various stakeholders and build a global community of scholars interested in advancing knowledge, generating big ideas, inducing change and exerting real impact in education. It was ranked in the 355th place among the total 1,469 journals, up 30 percent from the previous year.

ECNU International students' dragon boat team takes the crown again
The 13th Shanghai University Dragon Boat Race for International Students and the 1st Yangtze River Delta Invitational Dragon Boat Race for Foreign Students were held at East China University of Science and Technology on June 10.

ECNU’s team came out on top during the finals, paddling across the finish line in the challenging 200-meter course with a remarkable time of under 55 seconds. ECNUers celebrated the victory by jumping into the river and receiving cheers from both local fans and other spectators.

NYU renews cooperation with ECNU
ECNU and New York University signed a memorandum of understanding for a new cooperation cycle in Shanghai during a NYU delegation visit led by the university's new president Linda Mills on September 9.ECNU and NYU have been cooperating closely in the fields of talent training and joint scientific research since 2012 when the two jointly established NYU Shanghai. 

According to the memorandum jointly signed by ECNU President Qian Xuhong and NYU President Mills on ECNU's campus in downtown Shanghai, the two parties will continue to support the current talent training and joint scientific research projects of the two universities and actively explore emerging win-win and mutually beneficial projects.

ECNUers Ge Manqi and Lin Yuwei win gold at 19th Asian Games
On September 30, Chinese sprinter Ge Manqi, a graduate student majoring in Physical Education and Training at ECNU, claimed the Women's 100m title at the Hangzhou Asian Games. Ge clocked a winning time of 11.23 seconds.

On October 3, in the Women's 4x100m event, Ge Manqi, together with Liang Xiaojing, Wei Yongli, Yuan Qiqi clocked a winning time of 43.39 seconds for China. This was also Ge Manqi's second gold medal at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou.

On the evening of October 1, host hurdler Lin Yuwei, an undergraduate student majoring in Physical Education of the Class of 2019 at ECNU, triumphed with a personal best record of 12.74 seconds, which also met the entry standard of the Paris Olympics.

A New Landmark! Grand Neobay Cultural Arts Center inaugurated
On October 16, the anniversary day of the founding of ECNU, an impressive silver complex known as the Grand Neobay Culture Arts Center, covering a total floor area of 27,456m2, made a stunning debut in the northeastern part of Minhang Campus of ECNU.

Under the construction standards of “a national key laboratory in the field of culture and art”, the Grand Neobay Cultural Arts Center is one of the newest and most professionally equipped art theaters in Shanghai. It is also the only cultural and art complex in the southern part of Minhang District, dedicated to creating an excellent experimental base for artistic education and a source of cultural innovation.

Mrs. Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor visits ECNU and delivers speech
On October 19, Mrs. Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, former Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, visited ECNU and delivered a fascinating lecture. Mrs. Carrie Lam highlighted the opportunities and challenges of education in Hong Kong and introduced various talent programs initiated by the Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. She welcomed students to come to Hong Kong for study, internships, and career development.

Sports Day – a superb showcase of skills!
The annual sports competition is an important event for identifying and showcasing sports talents at ECNU. In addition, the competition gives students a break from their busy class schedule. This year’s sports day lasted two days from October 24 to 25, involving faculties and students competing in over 30 sports events.Throughout the two days of this campus sporting event, the student athletes at ECNU showcased their vigor and style on the field, surging forward and spraying sweat and at the same time honoring the values of teamwork and sportsmanship.

Chinese physical education goes into the world

On November 1, World Physical Education Alliance (WPEA) International Conference was held at ECNU. Physical education experts, researchers, and teachers from over 10 countries gathered at ECNU with the theme of "Inspiring Change, Empowering Future". They engaged in in-depth exchanges and discussions on the innovation and future development of physical education, shared experiences and achievements, and established cooperation and connections, with nearly 20,000 people participating online.

In April 2023, the WPEA was officially established by ECNU, building up a network of the alliance members spanning five continents and 25 countries/regions. This conference marks the Alliance's inaugural global offline event and formal establishment as an organization.

Embracing the world at 17th International Cultural Festival
On November 4, the “Mini Expo” of the 16th ECNU International Cultural Festival was held on Putuo Campus. There were booths representing 70 countries and regions at this year’s Mini Expo. The number of participating students, countries, and performing programs have all achieved the highest numbers in history.

In the evening, the Chinese and foreign students performed together on the stage to highlight their range of talents. Participants experienced a day filled with exciting performances, mouthwatering cuisines, and captivating displays of art and traditions.

ECNU hosts the 2nd International Mega–Delta Meeting to Advance Delta Sustainability

On November 6, ECNU hosted the 2nd International Mega–Delta Meeting. Under the theme “Delta Sustainability – Seeking Solutions for Sustainable Development”, the conference brought together over 200 experts and scholars from 17 countries. The participants engaged in in-depth discussions on research findings from over 20 river delta regions worldwide.

During the opening ceremony, the latest academic achievement of the “Mega–Delta Programme”: Delta Sustainability: A Report to the Mega-Delta Programme of the UN Ocean Decade, was officially released. “Seventy-four researchers from 13 countries contributed to this report, which took two years to compile.

Chinese, Russian experts and diplomats discuss emerging world order

On November 16, the Valdai Discussion Club and the Center for Russian Studies at ECNU hosted a conference entitled "Crisis and Global Transformation: China and Russia Facing the Challenges of a Changing World Order" in Shanghai.

The event brought together more than 60 experts and scholars from leading think tanks and diplomats from the two countries. Representatives from both countries held in-depth exchanges aimed at promoting comprehensive strategic cooperation between China and Russia in the new era.

ECNU establishes overseas office in Lyon, France
On November 30, the unveiling ceremony of the ECNU Lyon Office was held in France. The ECNU Lyon Office is located on the former site of the Institut Franco-Chinois, the century-old witness of Sino-French exchanges, in the Fourvière. The establishment of the ECNU Lyon Office on this site represents a practical way to commemorate and inherit the spirit of the Sino-French friendship, and demonstrates the great importance that Chinese universities attach to Sino-French cooperation and openness to the outside world.

Author: Xu Xincheng

Copy editor:Philip Nash

Editor: Wicky Xu