Leadership Perspectives: Youmin Xi, Executive President, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University

Founded in 2006, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) is the largest international joint venture university in China, a partnership between Xi’an Jiaotong University and the University of Liverpool. It has almost 17,000 registered students, including those who are completing study at the University of Liverpool.

XJTLU is one of the nine universities in China established as Sino-Foreign joint ventures. The 2003 Regulations on Chinese-Foreign Cooperation in Running Schools defined the implementation framework to govern joint programs and institutes in China at three levels–universities (separate legal entities), institutes (within a Chinese university), and programs.

I had a unique opportunity of visiting four joint venture universities and interviewing their leaders in January 2020. I visited Duke Kunshan University, NYU Shanghai, University of Nottingham Ningbo China and Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University. Full video interviews are available here.

Given below is the video interview with Professor Youmin Xi, Executive President, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University and an excerpt from it.

I also presented a guest lecture at XJTLU on “The Third Wave of International Student Mobility: Achieving Success for China as a Study Abroad Destination” which was covered in Sing Tao Daily.

On future strategic priorities:

“The purpose is to develop an international university in China and a Chinese university recognized internationally. Why? Because we are living in a globalized, digitalized, connected world. We do need prepare global citizens for the future world. In order to nourish such kind of talents, international learning environment and diversity among students and among staff are crucial. So that’s why we keep trying to get more international staff, international students to stay here. Then we can create a innovative ecosystem which will generate new ideas, good research results, and strong leaders for the future society and the industry”

On managing joint venture partnership:

“you needed to develop a vision, a mission and a model to convince all the stakeholders to agree with you. For them, it’s very important for them to have a clearly understanding about the future potential for this new way and the new model. Secondly, especially in China, the culture, the environment and the regulations would confront with your new idea or new model. You also needed to liaison with different parts to let them to know the potential value for the journey, for the exploration because you would create something new. You needed to let the people know, okay, the new things would benefit not only for this university but also for the industry and society.”