We are deepening cooperation in China - 2019

  • Michal Stoklasa
  • 15.11.2019
As part of the international activities of the SU SBA, on 19 - 25 October 2019, the Faculty representatives Vice-Rector Assoc. Prof. Gongol, Vice-Dean Assoc. Prof. Šperka and an International Relations Officer (Department of International Relations) Bc. Novotná set out on a carefully planned tour of China, namely to visit 2 Chinese universities in 2 cities. The mission followed previous visits to Chinese universities in 2018, visits of Chinese delegations in Karviná in August 2019, and the arrival of the first ever 45 students from the Shanxi University of Finance and Economics (SXUFE) at the SU SBA in WS 2019/20.

The working meetings included mutual exchange and visiting student mobility, a double-degree bachelor's program Economics and Management, taught in English, mutual long-term stays of professors and scientific research cooperation. The first stop was in the northwest of China in Gansu Province and its capital, Lanzhou. Lanzhou with 3.5 million inhabitants is one of the largest cities in the north of China and is dominated by the Yellow River with a steel bridge and a pagoda over the river. The city is located on the historic Silk Road and is known for its heavy and petrochemical industries. Currently, there is a massive construction and influx of people from other parts of China, and therefore the local government has decided to build new parts of the city “New Lanzhou” for several million more people near the international airport about 1 hour by car from the city centre. The city itself is located on the edge of the Gobi Desert and temperatures range from -5 degrees Celsius in winter to 22 in summer. The Lanzhou University of Finance and Economics (LUFE) has approximately 25,000 students studying at 17 economically oriented faculties. LUFE's strengths are study programs in statistics, finance and accounting. During a one-day visit, the Czech delegation met Vice-Rector Hu Kai and the Deans of two faculties - the School of International Economics and Trade and the School of Business Management. At the end of the visit Assoc. Prof. Šperka presented the SU SBA and possibilities of study at our faculty to 300 present Chinese students. In WS 2019/20 we are expecting the arrival of the first exchange and degree students from LUFE in Karviná. It is worth mentioning that in the current semester, our colleague Dr. Majerova from the Department of Economics and Public Administration, is teaching there and enjoying her stay a lot. 

The second stop was the medium-sized city of Taiyuan with 4.5 million inhabitants in Shanxi province. The city is located downstream of the Yellow River, although it does not pass through its centre. Shanxi Province has deep historical roots dating back to 497 BC and you can find lotus trees 3000 years old in the nearby Jinsi Temple Park. Shanxi was home to several Chinese ruling dynasties. Taiyuan is therefore called the Dragon City. Average temperatures range from -11 degrees Celsius in winter to 30 in summer. Our partner university, SXUFE, is located in Taiyuan and has nearly 30,000 students and 22 economically oriented faculties. The strongest degree programs are economics, management and finance. At the university, our delegation met our teacher, Dr. Zapletalova from the Department of Business Economics and Management, who is teaching at the School of International Trade in WS. SXUFE identified SU SBA as the most important foreign partner and within 3 days our representatives met with the Rector, Vice-Rectors and 22 Deans of all faculties. In WS 2019/20 we register 45 exchange and visiting students from SXUFE and another group is preparing for SS. In November and December, we are also expecting the arrival of 2 guest professors from Taiyuan.

From our perspective, China is undoubtedly one of the exotic landscapes with a completely different culture than what we are used to in Europe. For students, campuses are their own world with dormitories, restaurants, laundries and leisure facilities where they spend most of their student life. The Chinese hardly ever use cash. They use mobile phones to pay and pay using Chinese social networks such as QQ, WeChat or Ali Pay. The Internet and many of our services such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, Viber, WhatsApp, etc. are blocked. Their food is no different from breakfast, lunch to dinner, and is exclusively based on vegetables and meat (chicken claws and hot spices are popular). Hot-pots are widely used, where each guest in the restaurant cooks according to their choice of ingredients. A European could lack bread, chocolate or coffee. In ordinary shops, they do not have these commodities. Toilets are not equipped with conventional equipment and it is necessary to learn special techniques for their use. In China, air quality is poorer, however, the transport infrastructure is excellent. Technical conveniences in cars and in public can be seen everywhere. In cities, there are skyscrapers at every step.

The Chinese universities have shown particular interest in all of the above areas of cooperation and have suggested extending them for 1-month study visits and a double-degree program in Business Economics and Management. If you are interested in our first tour of China in 2018, you can read our article here. As part of reciprocity, it will be possible to start study stays for our students as of WS 2020/21. All interested, follow the information on the International Relations website and do not hesitate to engage in an interview with our Chinese students, who you can find at the faculty every day. Is it worth going to China? Definitely yes!
 
Roman Šperka
Vice-Dean for International Relations