Project 211

Project 211 (Chinese: 211工程; pinyin: 211 gōngchéng) is a project of National Key Universities and colleges initiated in 1995 by the Ministry of Education of the People's Republic of China, with the intent of raising the research standards of high-level universities and cultivating strategies for socio-economic development. During the first phase of the project, from 1996 to 2000, approximately US$2.2 billion was distributed.
China today has more than 1,700 standard institutions of higher education, with about 6 percent of them being 211 Project institutions (having met certain scientific, technical, and human resources standards and offer advanced degree programs). 211 Project schools take on the responsibility of training four-fifths of doctoral students, two-thirds of graduate students, half of students from abroad and one-third of undergraduates. They offer 85% of the state's key subjects, hold 96 percent of the state's key laboratories, and utilize 70% of scientific research funding.
The name for the project comes from an abbreviation of the 21st century and 100 (approximately participating universities).

International education

Soochow University's temporary Vientiane premises. Illustrations: Emilio Rivera. Photos: Patrick Boehler

The first overseas branch of a mainland university will open to undergraduate students next month, in Vientiane. And, as Patrick Boehler discovers, getting to grips with Laos and its authorities has taught the representatives from Suzhou a thing or two.

Saturday, 29 September, 2012, 11:49pm

Students face shortage of places on mainland

Only about half the mainland universities that accept local students exam-free are expected to have places left for the last round of enrolments starting today.

15 Aug 2012 - 11:07pm

Second academic sacked for fraud

A second university professor has been sacked within a week for falsifying his academic credentials amid mounting public cynicism over the higher-education system.

30 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Low-key gatherings to remember the dead

A small group of mourners visited the site of the fatal Wenzhou high-speed-train crash yesterday - the first anniversary of the tragedy - but no official commemorations were held.

24 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Pinyin's rise fuels dispute over what's in a name

A debate is growing in cyberspace about a trend that has seen more mainland universities adopt pinyin - romanised versions of Mandarin script - for the official English translations of their names in recent years, with some people hailing the trend as a good reflection of China's rise, while others dismiss it as cosmetic.

23 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

U.S. under fire as diplomats pull no punches

Top Chinese diplomats have lambasted the US for undermining Beijing's interests and making strategic mistakes in the Sino-US relationship, accusing Washington of meddling in China's domestic affairs and stirring up worries in the Asia-Pacific region.

Deputy Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai and senior diplomat Pang Hanzhao warned of thorny problems facing bilateral ties.

21 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Rights lawyers push enrolment policy reform

Eight human rights lawyers have urged the Ministry of Education to abolish discriminatory enrolment policies at elite universities which put students from some impoverished and populous regions at a great disadvantage.

18 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Shaky foundations

In a second-floor office in the archi-tecture department of the mainland's most prestigious university, Professor Xu Weiguo sits contemplating the changes that have occurred since he enrolled here, in the first year that classes were resumed following the Cultural Revolution.

10 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

The Yale of Shanghai

A formerly cash-strapped private college in Shanghai has become the mainland's first liberal arts college, aiming to nurture talent who can think out of the box.

20 Apr 2012 - 12:00am

Fashion lovers flock to courtyard for designs fresh from Paris

Paris Fashion Week may be over, but the spirit lives on at K11, the 'art shopping mall' in Kowloon. K11's new promotion, Paris, Bonjour!, began with much fanfare as hordes of fashion lovers crowded its outdoor courtyard to get a peek at Chinese designer Xiao Yu.

26 Mar 2012 - 12:00am

5,000 eye mainland

About 5,000 Hong Kong students have applied to top mainland universities, including Tsinghua and Fudan, since February 20. Applications end today.

5 Mar 2012 - 12:00am

Censorship official to be dean of journalism

A ministerial-level official in charge of media censorship has been appointed as dean of one of the most prestigious journalism schools on the mainland, prompting concerns that journalism classes will become more subject to Communist Party control.

4 Mar 2012 - 12:00am

Aviation think tank ready to provide new direction

The mainland's top aviation experts have formed a think tank to offer guidance to government and industry players who seem to have lost their bearings in recent years over the development of home-grown passenger jets.

28 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Politics is corroding Chinese love of learning

China has an old saying: nothing is as important as reading. This gives the impression that China as a nation loves knowledge and study. But, last year, a survey by the Chinese Academy of Press and Publication found that Chinese read on average just over four books a year. That's far fewer than South Koreans (11 books), the French (20), the Japanese (40) and Israelis (64).

2 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Chemistry song has winning formula, despite lyrics

A song about chemistry, with lyrics by the president of Peking University, became one of the most downloaded tunes on the mainland this week - a first for a song about science.

20 Oct 2011 - 12:00am