Industry Links Strengthened by MoU between XJTLU and Futurepolis LLC

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The Department of Urban Planning and Design (UPD) at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) and Futurepolis LLC signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) last week.

In accordance with the MoU, XJTLU (including academic departments and research institutes based at XJTLU) and Futurepolis will: 1) further explore collaboration opportunities in the areas of research, teaching and entrepreneurial activities 2) XJTLU will promote Futurepolis as a potential internship opportunity to the students; 3) Futurepolis will give priority to XJTLU students who make appropriate internship; 4) XJTLU will give priority to applicants from Futurepolis when it hosts a training programme with limited seats and 5) will consider the possibility of giving Futurepolis employees a membership discount. In return, Futurepolis will agree to consider job applications made by XJTLU graduates.

Acting Head of UPD and Chair of Built Environment Cluster at XJTLU, Dr. Jessica Sewell, , represented the University at the MoU ceremony, and was joined by colleagues from Urban Planning & Development (UPD) and Architecture, welcoming the delegation from Futurepolis which included: Ms. Huilai Shi, General Manager and Principal of Futurepolis; Ms. Tongwen Wang, Principal of Futurepolis; Mr. Gang Wang, Principal of Futurepolis; Ms. Jing Lu, Project Manager of Futurepolis, and colleagues from the Futurepolis LLC Suzhou office.

Dr. Sewell explained that this agreement will further promote the collaboration between XJTLU and industry partners and strengthen the impact of the University’s research and innovation.

Ms. Huilai Shi introduced Futurepolis LLC and its international background. She highlighted the potential collaboration opportunities that are to be made available to staff and students at XJTLU including joint studio teaching, and internships for students.

A team of delegates from Futurepolis, Mr. Gang Wang, Ms. Jing Lv, Ms. Tongwen Wang and Ms. Huilai Shi, delivered a guest lecture after the signing ceremony to all students and staff focusing on some of their recent prize-winning projects. These included: ‘Urban Planning – Ethiopia Dire Dawa Special Economic Zone Spatial Plan’; ‘Urban Design – Jintan Lakefront New Town Urban Design’; ‘Architecture – 'Historical street of Zaozhuang' - modern service park architecture design in south Shandong water town’; and ‘Landscape Design – Duke University Kunshan Campus Landscape’.

Coordinator Dr. Bing Chen, from UPD, said that this MoU would open opportunities for both parties to further explore reciprocal possibilities and conduct collaborations based on mutual interest. Similar activities will help enhance XJTLU’s mission of being a research-led entrepreneurial university.

Futurepolis LLC is an award-winning international design firm based in both Suzhou, China and Charlotte, U.S.A. Futurepolis provides architectural design, landscape design, and urban planning consulting services, and has established a reputation of design excellence with numerous high-profiled projects in China.

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