Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar, Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor John Rosenberg, Executive Director La Trobe Asia Professor Nick Bisley and Executive Director Centre for China Studies and Director of the Confucius Institute Professor Likun Pei have visited the National University of Singapore and the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore; and Chongqing University, Peking University, Beijing Foreign Studies University and the East China Normal University (ECNU) in China. They also visited the Confucius Institute of Hanban, the China Scholarships Council and the China Executive Leadership Academy Pudong (CELAP).
They were accompanied in Singapore by Associate Professor Paul Pigram, Head of the Department of Physics.
Their aims were to forge friendly relations with leading partners in the two countries, to introduce Professor Bisley as head of La Trobe's new initiative La Trobe Asia which will oversee relations with Asian countries, and to open new two-way study and research links between the two countries for staff and students.
In Singapore the visitors signed a student exchange agreement with Nanyang, and in China they signed an agreement on academic and cultural exchange at Chongqing, a student exchange at Peking, another student exchange at Beijing Foreign Studies, a renewal of the transnational education agreement with ECNU, La Trobe's oldest partner in China, and an MOU at CELAP.
In meetings, the two sides also discussed concrete proposals to carry forward two-way student exchanges, to open new areas for research cooperation, to promote the work of the Confucius Institute and to improve access to scholarships.
Professor Nick Bisley also gave lectures to staff and students at Beijing Foreign Studies University, ECNU and government officials and CELAP.