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2023 China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week: GEC Academy Hosted Interdisciplinary Innovative Talent with Global Competence Cultivation Forum

By Yiran Zhuo, research fellow of ASI Global

September 15, 2023 UPDATED 12:17 AM. GMT+8

The 2023 China-ASEAN Education Exchange Week kicked off in Guizhou with a triumphant start with GEC Academy's Parallel Forum on Interdisciplinary Innovative Talent with Global Competence Cultivation. Organized by Shanghai Jiao Tong University and co-hosted by GEC Academy and Guizhou University of Finance and Economics, this prestigious forum attracted esteemed professors and scholars from both domestic and international universities, with a primary objective of strengthening collaboration and knowledge exchange among universities, both nationally and internationally.


Beyond academia, the event was a beacon for nurturing students' international perspectives and fostering their global competence. It also served as a catalyst for driving innovation and cultivating talent in the dynamic realm of interdisciplinary studies, fostering closer ties between China and ASEAN nations.

Guests delivering opening remarks at 2023 China-ASEAN Education Cooperation Week

Professor Zhinan Zhang, hailing from the School of Mechanical Engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, delved into SJTU's hands-on experience and journey in fostering students' innovation capabilities through project-based learning in his opening remarks. He provided a comprehensive exploration of how project-based learning plays a pivotal role in nurturing engineering innovation talents, examining it from various angles, such as its education system development, curriculum design, case studies, etc.


Mr. Ning Zhang, who serves as the President of the International Competence Development Committee within the Chinese Society of Educational Development Strategy, delivered a thorough examination of the concept of global competence. In his address, he took into account the context and core prerequisites of international competence, and highlighted the role of interdisciplinary innovation talents, as well as the effective strategies for nurturing international competence.

Mr. Yu Zuo delivering a speech on nurturing innovative talents

Mr. Yu Zuo, Co-founder of GEC Academy, shared his insights into how GEC Academy can empower domestic universities to cultivate international innovative talents, using the establishment of the Shanghai Jiao Tong University - GEC Academy Center of Innovative Design for Interdisciplinary Studies as a prime illustration. He also underscored GEC Academy's practical experience in advancing university-industry collaborations to bolster the development of innovative talents.

Keynote speeches at the forum

In the subsequent keynote speeches, distinguished professors from leading Chinese universities also contributed their insights from multiple viewpoints. These included discussions on interdisciplinary talent development, fostering leadership capabilities in international entrepreneurship, and exploring effective models for nurturing exceptional innovation talents.


Professor Lei Yan, a distinguished member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and a faculty member of Institute of Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems at Peking University, provided valuable insights into the evolution of remote sensing technology and its significance within the context of interdisciplinary studies. Then, Professor Haixia Zhang, from the School of Integrated Circuits at Peking University, discussed how the "iCAN University Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition" helped nurture innovation and entrepreneurial talents. Finally, Professor Luping Xu from Tsinghua University explored an overarching vision for synergistic enhancements in both the quantity and quality of innovation talent development.


This forum has played a pivotal role in fostering collaboration between China and ASEAN countries in the field of education, with a particular focus on enhancing global competence and nurturing interdisciplinary talent. The GEC team takes immense pride in being a part of this significant initiative, contributing to the establishment of a more innovative, inclusive, and sustainable China-ASEAN education community.

Notably, the Global Competence Development (GCD) Project, co-designed by the GEC team and the Expert Committee of International Competency Talent Training, represents a tangible manifestation of best practices in nurturing interdisciplinary innovators with global competence. Recently, it has undergone a significant update (GCD Project 2.0) and is now officially launched in top universities across China for the current fall semester.


GCD Project 2.0 adopts a blended learning approach that seamlessly integrates both online and offline components. It has evolved from its initial 48-credit-hour online curriculum into a comprehensive program, now comprising 67 credit hours of foundational courses. Furthermore, an additional 24 credit hours workshop segment has been introduced, focusing on daily conferences, project management, document writing, and diplomatic etiquette at international organizations. This enhanced course extends its coverage to a broader range of business skills training and incorporates supplementary modules on psychology and career planning.


Moving forward, GEC Academy remains committed to continuously seeking new avenues for collaboration with universities, with an aim to advance the cultivation of a larger pool of interdisciplinary innovators, well-equipped with global competence, all within a sustainable framework for international competence development.

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