Photo for 8th Annual Peking University -...

8th Annual Peking University - UCLA Symposium

90 faculty and students from Peking University and UCLA gathered to exchange research findings and explore new areas for collaboration at the 8th annual JRI symposium at PKU.

A delegation of 8 faculty and one graduate student represented the University of California, Los Angeles’ (UCLA) science and engineering research during the Joint Research Institute in Science and Engineering (JRI) by Peking University (PKU) and UCLA. The Annual Symposium, held June 29-30, 2017 on the PKU campus. Over 90 participants attended this eight annual symposium which alternates between PKU and UCLA campuses.

During the opening remarks, JRI Co-Director and PKU Professor Xiaoming Li reflected on the eight years of partnership. An update of the JRI programs was provided by JRI Co-Director and UCLA Professor Jason Cong including highlights from JRI’s research, publications and student programs. Professor Cong mentioned JRI faculty from UCLA and PKU published 17 joint papers in 2016 and that this year 15 UCLA students were joining the Summer Research Program at PKU.

Long time JRI supporter and advisory board member and Managing Director at GSR Ventures Management Co. Ltd, Mr. James Ding then participated in a Fireside chat with the co-directors. Mr. Ding shared about his work in China, areas for potential partnership with academia and the future of Augmented Reality. Mr. Ding was also recognized for his generous gift creating the “James Ding Centennial Scholars Fund for Summer Research in China.” This gift funds two UCLA students to conduct research and study Chinese language and culture at PKU every summer.

The audience was then engaged by keynote presentations from prominent faculty from both campuses: Heping Peace Cheng, Institute of Molecular Medicine, PKU; and Wei Wang, Department of Computer Science, UCLA.

UCLA Computer Science Professor Songwu Lu during the Augmented and Virtual Reality session

The afternoon included four breakout sessions where faculty from both schools presented their latest research and engaged in discussions on ways to collaborate together to advance their research. Topics included the Advances in Neurotechnology and Neurodegeneration; Environment and Air Pollution; Augmented and Virtual Reality; and Big Data.


PKU researcher Yong Zhang in the Advances in Neurotechnology and Neurodegeneration break out session

UCLA Department of Psychology professor Tad Blair described the unique ways in which the JRI Symposium facilitates collaboration, “Research teams at UCLA and PKU have been working independently on new calcium imaging technologies, which allow neuroscience researchers to visualize the activity of neurons in the living brain.This year's JRI symposium was a valuable opportunity for UCLA and PKU research teams to learn about one another's work, and discuss plans for future collaboration. Through partnership between UCLA and PKU, we hope to significantly enhance the capabilities of these technologies, and equally importantly, we aim to make them easier to use and more accessible to researchers around the world.”

Faculty from both schools dinned together after the symposium

The day after the symposium, an Image Processing working group meeting was held that included researchers who received funding from the National Science Foundation of China. Both faculty and student researchers presented their work. Later, a group of UCLA and PKU faculty met to discuss potential ways to apply for joint funding from the U.S. and Chinese governments. A representative from PKU’s sponsored research office also came to discuss Chinese funding opportunities.

Symposium attendees gather after morning plenary

For the full program of the symposium, please visit  JRI was founded in 2009 with the intention of fostering new and existing collaborations between UCLA and Peking University. Under the co-direction of Xiaoming Li (PKU) and Jason Cong (UCLA), JRI trains future science and engineering leaders with a global perspective, secures joint funding, and facilitates technology transfer of research results. JRI aims to serve both institutions as they jointly confront global concerns in science and engineering. 

For more info please contact:
Erin Hakim

Published: Friday, July 21, 2017