Go/no-go decision on Yantai scheduled for October

A ‘go/no-go’ decision for the Yantai branch campus plans is scheduled for 19 October, according to a time line for the collaboration with China Agricultural University.

The document will be discussed in the University Council next week. The university’s go/no-go decision – effectively a pass/fail – is scheduled for October. A faculty-level finding for the decision should be made by the FEB advisory board on 15 September. RUG spokesperson Gernant Deekens could not provide any additional information about the October deadline.

The timetable also refers to the University making preparations this week for a visit from a vice-minister of education from China, but Deekens says that there is no official meeting scheduled between RUG stakeholders and the Chinese representative. While there is a Sino-Dutch Education Policy Dialogue scheduled for Tuesday in The Hague, the RUG is not directly involved in the event.

The first to teach

The two faculties that have been chosen as the first to teach programmes from their curriculum in Yantai in the first years of operation are the Faculty of Mathematics & Natural Sciences and the Faculty of Economics & Business. On Friday, the University Council met with representatives from these councils – notably, the Faculty of Arts was also invited to the meeting.

It has been reported previously that European Languages and Cultures was being considered for inclusion in the Yantai plans. According to programme board secretary Bob de Jonge, ‘ELC is still being thought of as an option for the second phase, but I am told this option is quite serious, especially because the Chinese are interested in languages and our programme seems to be perfect for it.’


In April, the personnel faction of the arts faculty council expressed scepticism about the Board of Director’s activities surrounding the Yantai plans. Evidently, two arts programmes have been discussed as potential options for Yantai: International Relations & International Organization and European Languages & Cultures.

However, no arts faculty courses would begin in China before 2017, and dean Gerry Wakker emphasized that the board of directors are responsible for the plans.

Chinese ministry

In July, a request for a charter for the University of Groningen-Yantai branch is scheduled for submission to the Chinese Ministry of Education, followed by signing a memorandum of understanding between the RUG and China Agricultural University.

If the decision is made to continue with the plans on 19 October, then the establishment of the legal entity of the University of Groningen Yantai will occur in October, a Board of Directors will be appointed in November, and a chancellor and vice-chancellor for the new university will be named on 28 December.