Summer School organised by Utrecht University in collaboration with Shanghai Jiao Tong University

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The New Silk Road: Connecting Students and Universities from China and Europe

Organizing institution

Utrecht University - Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance


29 June 2020 - 03 July 2020 ( 1 week )

Course location(s)

Shanghai, China


1.5 ECTS credits

Course code


Course fee



Advanced Master

International relations are shifting as multilateral trade and cooperation are being renegotiated between countries, such as the US and the UK, and trade blocks. Meanwhile, China is launching the New Silk Road, or One Belt One Road Initiative, that could potentially span and integrate major parts of the world across Eurasia. Based on the international research project on the New Silk Road, this course will explore how these changing relationships are affecting academic cooperation and what opportunities this opens for universities, students, and researchers.


This course is organised by Utrecht University (Centre for Global Challenges) in collaboration with Shanghai Jiao Tong University

The course discusses the challenges related to cultural and structural (system) differences and the apparently shifting paradigm of globalization as a contextual factor for the development of higher education agendas in China, Europe, and any country connected to the New Silk Road, and as a conceptual factor for analyzing international cooperation models and practices.

More specific questions for discussion include:
• What types of academic flows and cooperation activities are emerging along the NSR? 
• What do students experience, and how do universities respond? 
• Under which (legal - regulatory and technological) conditions are these activities taking place and who defines these? 
• How is globalization perceived and what values are underpinning the mission of the university in China and the West and how will cooperation contribute towards an open society and the global common good? 

This course will explore these questions, based on the findings from the international research project on the New Silk Road, and various of the top-scholars involved in the project are among the lecturers.  

This course is essential for students and scholars from China, Europe, and beyond, to enhance their understanding of the major shifts underway in global higher education and to provide a basis for building joint perspectives on future directions for international collaboration.

Mutual exchange of views and experiences from lecturers and participants will allow to compare perceptions and to deepen the comprehension of missions, values, aims, and strategies. 

Participants will actively contribute by presenting their own research (plans) in this area, which will be discussed in small groups led by senior scholars.

The first version of this summer school was held in Utrecht in 2019 and received very positive feedback from the participants (overall evaluation score of 8.2). 

Lecturers for this summer school will be drawn from the interdisciplinary team of high-level scholars engaged in the international research project on the New Silk Road, as well as other invited experts in the field.

Course director

Prof. Dr. Marijk van der Wende


Organizing Committee:

• Prof. dr. Marijk van der Wende (Utrecht University and Guest Professor at SJTU)

• Dr. Yuhao Cen (Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Graduate School of Education)

• Ms. Yan Gao, Ms. Ge Yu (Shanghai Jiao Tong University)

Target audience

Level: Graduate students (advanced / research masters and Ph.D.) and active researchers from relevant fields, such as social sciences, law, economics, and cultural studies.

Course aim

This course aims to explore how these changing relationships are affecting academic cooperation and what opportunities this opens for universities, students, and researchers.

Study load

See day-to-day program (will be published asap)


Course fee:



Course + course materials

Housing fee:


The fee includes excursions and related costs to the museum entrance, welcome and farewell dinners, but excludes local travel costs and other meals.

Housing through: a third party.

The housing fee €225 for a 5-night stay (single room) in a hotel nearby SJTU’s Minhang campus. This fee is to be paid directly to the hotel in Shanghai. If you wish to stay in the hotel please tick the "I want housing" button.


Applications for scholarships are only available for students currently enrolled in a university, supported by an authorized financial statement proving insufficient (family) means and a reference letter from the student's supervisor.


Applicants are encouraged to describe their motivation for the course on the basis of research they are undertaking, or planning to undertake, in the context of their graduate programme (research master of Ph.D.), post-doctoral research, or professional activity.

For this course you are required to upload the following documents when applying:

  •  Motivation Letter
  •  C.V.

More information

Prof. dr. Marijk van der Wende | E:


Application deadline: 01 May 2020