The construction of “world-class universities and first-class disciplines” is a crucial measure taken by the Chinese government to improve higher education after the success of the 211 and 985 Programs, and to ensure that the nation becomes rich in human-resource potential. It is also relevant to enhancing the country’s core competitiveness internationally and to achieving its modernization goals. The implementation of the Double First-Class Initiative is fully compatible with China’s economic and social development and the demand for talents to play a central role in spearheading the country’s growth.
The Double First-Class Initiative integrates the development of higher education at home and the lessons learned from the development of higher education abroad. World-class universities and first-class disciplines are being built in keeping with Chinese cultural characteristics; the plan combines a careful evaluation of national conditions with a spirit that encourages innovation.
The implementation of the Double First-Class Initiative is in accord with the essence and principles of education, while still keeping pace with the times. China’s higher education system has joined the age of “mass education.” We are entering a networked and information-based society; the organization of the university has changed profoundly, and curriculums are becoming centered on digital platforms, where the nature of education focuses on individual choice and personalized learning is becoming the way of the future. In the process of laying the groundwork for the initiative, China strives to foster the highest educational standards, while strongly supporting higher education in its goals of improving scientific research, increasing the capacity for innovation, and expanding the cultivation of talent.
The Double First-Class Initiative is being planned using a scientific system; in order to build world-class universities and ensure their sound operation, their development must be standardized through legislation that clarifies the mechanisms of management and operation. Chinese universities maintain their relationship with the government in accordance with the Higher Education Law of the People’s Republic of China, giving full play to their ability to run independently while still under the guidance of the government.
The Double First-Class Initiative provides a reasonable evaluation system, which is an important impetus for the sound development of higher education. Under the initiative, assessment of Chinese universities is characterized by support and encouragement in the administrative details of running a university and directional guidance in the formation of disciplines. The appraisal of the university centers on the cultivation of students and allows their initiative to flourish.
Perhaps the most crucial aspect of the Double First-Class Initiative is the support it receives from the stable supply of talents that is now pouring in. In recent years, Chinese higher education has been developing rapidly, and its universities have attracted more and more specialists. What is said in the classic Chinese poetry collection The Book of Songs, Da Ya and Wen Wang is that “talents were born in this kingdom, who fostered the development of the kingdom; they were the pillars of the Zhou Dynasty.” A first-class team of scholars is the basis for first-class scientific research and teaching. The construction of world-class universities and first-class disciplines in China requires not only buildings, but also experts in every field.
By being fully engaged in the Double First-Class Initiative and helping to guide higher education toward a brighter future, Chinese universities are playing a leading role in the advancement of human civilization. The Double First-Class Initiative has opened up thousands of opportunities for outstanding scholars. Global talents are welcomed to join us, for China is a promising country where you can realize your dream of scientific research.