During the commemorative meeting of 40 years of international sister cities in Guangzhou, the 2019 Annual Conference of the Alliance of Guangzhou International Sister-City Universities (GISU) was held October 31 - November 1. Almost 400 delegates attended the annual conference and the three seminars, including official representatives of GISU member universities, scholars and faculty of relevant academic fields from GISU universities, staff of Guangzhou Sister-cities, and industrial and business partners and investors. Countries represented included China, Canada, Italy, Australia, Sweden, Finland, Portugal, and the United Kingdom.
The annual conference was held in the Baiyun International Conference Center. Representatives of the seven official GISU members delivered speeches and organized discussions about how to promote and further develop in depth joint education, research and cultural exchanges through the GISU platform. The representatives then voted to approve the membership applications of four universities nominated by the Guangzhou Municipal Government Foreign Affairs Office and Guangzhou University. The four universities included Guangzhou Medical University (Guangzhou, China), Middle East Technical University (Ankara, Turkey), Incheon National University (Incheon, South Korea), and the University of the West of England (Bristol, UK). Following membership procedures, each of the four universities presented their institutions for approval.
The annual conference also included a presentation on the Youth Leadership Forum & Entrepreneurship Project. All GISU representatives agreed to move forward with this first member-wide project for student biennial competitions and annual forums on Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
Three international seminars were held concurrently during the Alliance meeting. These seminars included: the Sino-Canadian Seminar on International Culture and Tourism, the Sino-Swedish Seminar on City-Sustainable Development, and the Sino-Italian Seminar on Protection of Historical Architectures and Cultural Relics.
The first seminar included the signing of the renewal agreement for the Guangzhou University-Linköping University Joint Research Center for Urban Sustainable Development which was witnessed by Mayors of Guangzhou and Linköping. The other two seminars featured two ceremonies for the leaders of the relevant cities and universities. These ceremonies included the inauguration of the China-Italy International Research Center for Protection of Historical Architectures and Cultural Relics (CIPAR) and the inauguration of the International Institute for the Study of Tourism and Culture Synergies, Innovation and Development.
As one of the founders of GISU and home of its Secretariat Office, Guangzhou University is delighted to have hosted this year’s annual conference.
GISU was jointly established in 2018 by Guangzhou University and other international sister city universities with the aim to promote exchange and collaboration, share educational resources and achieve win-win cooperation among its member universities. The founding members of GISU include Guangzhou University (China), University of Coimbra (Portugal), Linköping University (Sweden), University of Padova (Italy), University of Tampere (Finland), and Western Sydney University (Australia).