For the purpose of the 120th anniversary of Xi’an Jiaotong University and the 60th anniversary of the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University School of Medicine Lara Fritschi, Attachée to the Science, Technology and Education Section (STE) of the Embassy of Switzerland in the People’s Republic of China was kindly invited to hold a presentation on the Sino-Swiss Science and Technology Cooperation (SSSTC). This bilateral agreement on technical and scientific cooperation between the Swiss State Secretariat for Education. Research and Innovation (SERI) and the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) as well as the Chinese Academy of Science (CAS) was established in 2003 with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. Since then the program has successfully finished its first phase (2008-2012) with almost 200 research projects having received funding amongst others in the field of ‘Translational Biomedical Research & Medical Technology’ and is now in its second phase (2013-2016) with a joint research call in ‘Environmental Sciences and Engineering & Material Sciences’.
Following the invitation of Xi’an Jiaotong University, one of the nine elite universities in China, and Prof. Likang Sun from Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the delegation consisting of Prof. Muriel Cuendet from University of Geneva, Prof. Matthias Bureik from Tianjin University, Prof. Liqun He from Uppsala University and Lara Fritschi from the STE Section, was warmly welcomed by the President of the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University, Prof. Dr. Bingyin Shi on May 12th for a first collective dinner. The following day the delegation visited the hospital and Xi’an Jiaotong University’s School of Medicine, where they gave insightful presentations on their research and field of expertise. The presentations were followed by a Q&A where the assisting students and professors could ask questions. Especially the Stepping Stone Symposia, a SSSTC tool established in 2010 with the aim of bridging the gaps between Chinese and Swiss researchers on fundamental research and innovation, raised a lot of questions and interests among the participants.
The presentation and promotion of Switzerland and the SSSTC program in Xi’an concluded with a visit of Xi’an’s Great City Wall and the wish of a prosperous continuation and new start of collaboration with Switzerland in research and innovation.