A high level team of Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Executive Deans, Executive Directors and academics, led by the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg (UJ), Professor Ihron Rensburg, hosted an academic delegation from the Beijing Normal University (BNU), as part of UJ’s expanded international focus to foster relationships with higher education institutions around the world.
Making a call for closer ties between the universities, discussions were centred on academic cooperation and collaboration through the scholarship of teaching and learning programmes; joint research and development projects; postgraduate supervision and examination ventures; and study abroad programmes. One such engagement to set the wheels of further collaboration in motion will be through the Emerging Markets Institute (EMI) at BNU. The EMI aims to deepen and widen the research of interactive relations between emerging market countries, globally.
Says the Chancellor of University Council of BNU, Madam Chuansheng Liu: “The collaborations compliment the strategic direction of both institutions. The universities and faculties’ goals are to work with international partners, develop both universities and achieve success. I am impressed by UJ’s 2025 vision and I’m certain that it will be achieved.”
UJ’s VC & Principal Prof Ihron Rensburg with the BNU meeting delegation
UJs VC Principal Prof Ihron Rensburg with the BNU meeting delegationTo this end, BNU invited UJ’s Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Prof Ihron Rensburg to the BRICS President’s Forum to be hosted by BNU in October 2015. Prof Rensburg will reflect on emerging market countries with regards to future development and cooperation at the Forum.
Prof Rensburg pointed out the investment UJ is making towards its 2025 vision especially with regards to the roll out of flagship projects in teaching and learning programmes and research areas. “UJ’s drive towards Global Excellence and Stature is seeing activation with its investment over R600 million in the next seven year in flagship initiatives. We are making appointments at a new category called Distinguished Professor, across a range of areas, in particular, focusing on flagships in teaching and learning and research to help UJ grow our global reputation. These top Distinguished Professor will be supported by an increased number of post-doctoral fellows and by distinguished doctoral and master’s fellowships.” Currently, the two institutions have links within the Schools of Law with six professors from the UJ School of Law visiting the BNU counterpart.
Further more the partnerships could mean an invaluable exchange of ideas and knowledge with regards to supervision as the number of Postgraduate and PhD students increases. “This could provide an opening between the universities and co-supervision in areas of Energy Efficiency, Climate Change, Loss of Biodiversity and Environmental Law,” said Dr Isaac T. Rampedi, a Senior Lecturer at UJ’s Department of Geography, Environmental Management and Energy Studies.