New international agreement between leading geoscience institutes

As part of a newly signed agreement, two leading earth science institutes have committed to strengthening global research and collaboration.

The University of Leeds, through the School of Earth and Environment (SEE), and the Institute of Geology and Geophysics, at the Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGGCAS) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding formalising the organisations’ aims to expand academic co-operation, staff exchange and joint publications. 

Students from both institutes will also benefit from the commitment to organising joint academic activities such as continuing education courses, outreach and exchange. 

The MoU was signed by Professor Alan Haywood, the director of Research and Innovation at SEE and Professor Rixiang Zhu, the director of IGGCAS. As part of the agreement, the institute directors will meet annually to discuss further areas of cooperation, such as joint workshops and publishing programmes.

SEE research is delivered by five school institutes and two national research centres. The institute’s interdisciplinary research incorporates geology and geophysics, environmental science, meteorology and climate science and environmental social science. 

IGGCAS is a prestigious geoscience research institution in China. The institute was formed in 1999 by the merging of the Institute of Geology and the Institute of Geophysics into a school as part of the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS) 

Professor Haywood said: “Our partnership with IGGCAS will give staff and students from both institutes the opportunity to collaborate on world leading research with global impact.” 

Professor Ding Zhongli, vice president of Chinese Academy of Sciences and president of UCAS said: "The collaboration on geoscience will set forward a new and ambitious future relationship between Leeds University and UCAS." 

The two institutes have already co-operated in a number of areas including staff visits and research presentations. The two institutes also currently share a joint PhD student. 

Partnerships have already been developed with leading universities in China, such as Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Southwest Jiaotong University, which has recently launched a joint school with Leeds.