SMU makes inroads into Chongqing through new partnership pacts signed at 6th Global Forum

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  • 6th SMU Global Forum was held in partnership with Chongqing University
  • SMU signed MOU with CQU on academic cooperation, and tripartite agreement with CQU and Y3 Technologies on urban logistics R&D collaborations
  • Prominent speakers from China and Singapore discussed the next phase of Sino-Singapore economic collaboration and global challenges

Singapore Management University (SMU), in partnership with Chongqing University (CQU), held the SMU-CQU Global Forum on 31 March 2017 in Chongqing, China. The sixth edition of the Global Forum, themed “The Next Phase of Sino-Singapore Economic Collaboration: Managing Global Challenges Together”, was supported by CapitaLand China. Mr Gan Teng Kiat, Consul-General, Singapore Consulate-General in Chengdu, graced the event as Guest-of-Honour.

This year’s discussion took place in the context of Singapore’s third government-to-government (G-to-G) project with China in Chongqing and its contribution to China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative. The SMU-CQU Global Forum provided a platform to showcase the close collaboration among the academia, industry and governments of both countries in support of the Chongqing Connectivity Initiative (CCI).

At the forum, SMU inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to foster academic cooperation with CQU, and a tripartite collaborative agreement with CQU and Singapore’s Y3 Technologies.

The SMU-CQU MOU aims to promote a range of mutually-beneficial exchanges between the two institutions, covering student, faculty and staff exchanges; joint research; organisation of joint activities, like conferences, seminars, symposia or lectures; as well as sharing of teaching and academic material and publications.

The agreement between the Fujitsu-SMU Urban Computing and Engineering Corp Lab (UNiCEN), an SMU research arm, CQU’s Smart Logistics Research Centre and Y3 Technologies Pte Ltd, a home-grown technology solutions company that has a strong presence in China, provides research opportunities in big data analytics for commercial applications and in talent development.

[Photo (front row, left to right): The tripartite collaboration agreement was signed by Prof Lau Hoong Chuin, Director, UNiCEN, SMU; Prof Wang Xu, Vice Chairperson of CQU Council and Director, CQU Smart Logistics Research Centre; and Mr Marc Dragon, CEO, Y3 Technologies.]

By combining the academic strengths of both universities and the domain-and-data rich expertise of Y3 Technologies, the tie-up aims to conduct R&D and develop talents in logistics. Specifically, the focus will be on urban and cross-border logistics, multi-modal logistics, and digital supply chains. The three parties will jointly apply for grants at the national and provincial levels. The funding obtained will support R&D projects; faculty and student exchanges; internships and full-time scholarships for select CQU students to pursue PhD studies at SMU. 

[Photo: SMU Provost Prof Lily Kong delivering her welcome address.]

The SMU delegation, led by Provost Professor Lily Kong, included:

  • Professor James Tang, Dean, School of Social Sciences (SoSS) and Special Advisor (Greater China) to President
  • Professor Bryce Hool, Dean, School of Economics (SoE)
  • Professor Lau Hoong Chuin, School of Information Systems (SIS) and Director, UNiCEN
  • Assistant Professor Zhang Wei, School of Law (SoL)

Revolving around the Forum’s theme, four keynote speakers – two each from Singapore and Chongqing – shared their expert views on relevant topics, such as “Healthcare and Retirement Issues for Singapore’s Ageing Population”, “Leading a Global Company in an Uncertain World”, and “Innovation, Cyclicality, Efficiency and Fiscal Policies” with the audience.

In her welcome address, SMU Provost Prof Kong thanked CQU for their effort and cooperation in jointly organising the Global Forum with SMU, and said that SMU was proud to support and contribute to the third G-to-G flagship project between Singapore and China.

CQU Executive Vice President Prof Yang Dan expressed his appreciation to SMU for the staging of the joint event in his welcome speech.

[CQU Executive Vice President Prof Yang at his welcome speech.]

Singapore has unique and strategic advantages in deepening the bilateral engagements between China and Singapore and in contributing to the CCI, said Guest-of-Honour Mr Gan Teng Kiat, Consul-General, Singapore Consulate-General in Chengdu. 

[Photo: GOH Consul-General Mr Gan congratulated both SMU and CQU on the new partnership.]

In his keynote speech, Prof Hool shared findings and analysis of a longitudinal study on health and retirement issues for Singapore’s ageing population, which is also a major demographic challenge confronting the households, policy-makers and society of China.

[Photo: SMU Dean of SoE Prof Hool touched on ageing issues and research in his keynote speech.]

Keynote speaker Mr Han Baochang, Director-General, China-Singapore (Chongqing) Demonstration Initiative on Strategic Connectivity Administrative Bureau (CCI), highlighted that the Chinese government is driving as well as facilitating more collaborations such as the innovative project between SMU and CQU, and those undertaken by enterprises.

[Photo: CCI Director-General Mr Han at his keynote speech.]


[Photo (left to right): Keynote speakers Mr Teo Eng Cheong, CEO (International), Surbana Jurong Pte Ltd, and Prof Zhang Jie, School of Economics and Business Administration, CQU.]

SMU Dean of SoSS and Special Advisor (Greater China) to President Prof Tang chaired the Roundtable discussion on “How Singapore and Chongqing can be pathfinders of Modern Connectivity and Services”. 


[Photo: The Roundtable discussion, moderated by Prof James Tang, SMU Dean of SoSS and Special Advisor (Greater China) to President (right).]

Other eminent panellists who participated in the Forum were as follows:

  • Mr Sun Xiyong, Deputy Director-General, CCI
  • Mr Kenneth Teo, Regional Director (West China), International Enterprise Singapore and Consul (Commercial), Singapore Consulate-General in Chengdu
  • Mr Romell Song, Deputy GM (Operations), Raffles City Chengdu, CapitaLand China
  • Prof Yao Shujie, Vice Director, Faculty of Social Sciences, CQU
  • Mr Li Xingzhi, Deputy GM, Chongqing Transportation Holding (Group) Co., Ltd
  • Prof Liu Wei, CQU School of Economics and Business Administration
  • Ms Su Jing, Vice President, Chongqing Rural Commercial Bank

[Photo (left): Invited panellist, CCI Deputy Director-General Mr Sun Xiyong, speaking at the Roundtable discussion.]

The SMU Global Forum series provides a useful platform for business leaders, academic experts and policy-makers to discuss ideas and share insights on emerging trends and contemporary issues that might impact China’s growth and development, and ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation amid global challenges and uncertainties. It also demonstrates SMU’s thought leadership and competence in its five focus areas of research excellence: Finance and Financial Markets; Analytics for Business, Consumer and Social Insights; Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Ageing and Healthcare Management; and Urban Management and Sustainability.

The SMU International Office has been organising two China-related forums yearly, alternating between China and Singapore, since 2012. It works closely with its counterparts from the Chinese partner universities. To date, five editions of the Global Forum have been successfully held in partnership with leading PRC universities, like Tsinghua University, Fudan University, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics, and Sichuan University.

Going forward, SMU aims to contribute to Singapore’s increasing interaction with China by nurturing China-ready and bi-cultural graduates, and by embarking on more cutting-edge academic and research collaborations. Through continuously pushing the frontiers of multi-disciplinary research underscored by industry relevance and impact, SMU hopes to enhance the strong and cordial people-to-people exchanges between Singapore and China.

[Photo: Over 100 participants attended the SMU-CQU Global Forum.]

For more information on Chongqing University, visit http:

Please see CQU’s web story on the SMU-CQU Global Forum here.

[Featured photo: SMU Provost Prof Lily Kong signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with CQU Executive Vice President Yang Dan. It was witnessed by Guest-of-Honour, Mr Gan Teng Kiat, Consul-General, Singapore Consulate-General in Chengdu (back row, centre); Mr Han Baochang, Director-General, China-Singapore (Chongqing) Demonstration Initiative on Strategic Connectivity Administrative Bureau (back row, third from right); and key executives of both universities at the forum.]

[All photos’ credits: Chongqing University (CQU).]

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