Guided by the principles of "complementary advantages, reciprocity, world-class achievements and mutual development", Tsinghua University has established extensive collaborations with many world leading universities, research institutes, and multinational enterprises. This These forward-thinking and high-level scientific research collaborations and communications takes diversified and flexible forms, including setting up joint research institutes, framework collaboration agreements, commissioned research and development projects, joint research and development projects, joint research funds, and overseas licensing and technology transfer. The goal of all these collaboration modes is to help Tsinghua University improve its scientific research practices and enhance its academic development, as well as to educate talented students with a global vision, thereby further establishing Tsinghua’s international influence and reputation.
As of the end of 2020, strategic scientific research cooperation agreements have been signed by Tsinghua and 16 universities and scientific research institutions, including the University of Cambridge, Imperial College London, Tokyo University, Tohoku University, the University of Toronto, the University of Alberta, the University of New South Wales in Australia, the Imperial College of St. Petersburg in Russia, the Aachen University of Technology in Germany, with more than 160 joint Seed Funding Programs initiated. In March 2020, Tsinghua University announced the establishment of the Chunfeng Foundation - International Scientific Research Support Program to promote international joint scientific research collaboration on Covid-19. This initiative has been embraced and supported by many other universities, and corresponding cooperation.
Alliance for international science and technology collaborations
By utilizing a joint funding mechanism, Tsinghua University initiated substantial technological collaboration on cutting edge areas with a lot of top level universities, with its goal of becoming an internationally renowned first-class university. The joint collaboration funds can be focused on one or more specific research areas, or they can simply be used to encourage university-wide faculty and student exchanges and to provide seed funding for joint research projects.,
Joint research centers
Joint research centers usually represent long lasting relationships， and are often interdisciplinary in nature. They play an important role in the overseas scientific and research collaborations. Based on mutually beneficial strategic partnerships, Tsinghua University has set up joint research centers with many world-class universities and institutes such as Johns Hopkins University, and the National University of Singapore, and with more than 30 overseas multinational enterprises, including Toyota Motor Corp., Siemens, Boeing Company, Microsoft and Samsung. By actively and effectively utilizing the technological, intellectual and financial resources from both sides, many high impact scientific achievements have been made.
Joint research projects
In some key research areas, Tsinghua University has concentrated efforts in establishing contacts with world-class universities and leading enterprises in the industry to jointly launch research projects. By thoroughly understanding the needs of industry and introducing high-quality research resources from leading international enterprises, Tsinghua University is able to enhance the collaboration between industry and academia, which promotes technological innovation.
Center of Knowledge Interchange with overseas enterprises
Tsinghua is a member of Siemens’ Center of Knowledge Interchange (CKI), which is the highest level of Siemens’ global academic collaboration with educational institutions. It serves as a bridge and platform to deepen and broaden collaborations between Tsinghua and Siemens in scientific research and talent training.
With the support of Siemens, the joint research project between Tsinghua University and UC Berkeley “Green Online Experimental Platform” was established. This project, in the area of intellectual architecture, covers research on information technology, such as green electro-communication, and intellectual network control, with the aim to develop new information and energy technology to reduce energy consumption and to protect the environment. This project pioneered a new cooperative model of University-Industry-University (U-I-U) collaboration.
Over the years, Tsinghua University has established long-term partnerships with many overseas enterprises in the form of commissioned R&D projects. These commissioned R&D projects not only assist the overseas enterprises to solve technological and management problems, but also provide opportunities for scientific research in key areas and help enhance academic development at Tsinghua University. Such projects also provide important information to faculty and students at Tsinghua University regarding new trends in industrial technological development, and help to promote the application of Tsinghua’s scientific research achievements in industry.
The long-term and consistent scientific research collaborations between Tsinghua University and overseas enterprises have generated many remarkable achievements, including new technologies that of great social and-economic value. Many of such technologies have been applied in practical production by overseas enterprises through technology-permission or technology-transfer agreements.