U-M strengthens collaborations with China

January 19, 2017
Written By:
Debing Su

ANN ARBOR—The University of Michigan will collaborate with Chinese institutions to advance research, development and deployment of new transportation technologies and cutting-edge innovations.

S. Jack Hu, U-M vice president for research, signed a research agreement with DiDi Chuxing, China’s largest rider-hailing company, to develop scholarships and innovations related to the share economy. U-M is the first university in the U.S. to partner with DiDi.

The nearly $1 million, three-year joint research program focuses on transportation optimization, big data, artificial language learning and artificial intelligence. It aims to better understand transportation behaviors norms, reduce congestion on the global transportation infrastructure and provide solutions to mobility.

“We are very glad to reach an agreement with DiDi,” Hu said. “We look forward to collaborating closely in research and innovation to tackle mobility challenges and improve transportation for the public benefits.”

Earlier, U-M signed a memorandum of understanding with Tus-International and TusStar, aiming for partnerships on smart mobility, medicine and new technology deployment. Both companies are part of Beijing-based Tus-Holdings, the Tsinghua University-backed science-park developer.

“Tus is a technological innovation and development enterprise, with strengths across a range of disciplines, including connected vehicles, data sciences, and medicine,” Hu said “As a global research university, U-M also has strengths in these areas. We are hoping to develop new technologies for commercialization with the potential to transform global transportation, health and environment.”

Also, U-M finalized an agreement to establish the Global Collaboratory in Advanced Manufacturing with Beijing Institute of Collaborative Innovation (BICI) and Peking University.

Funding for the five-year, $25 million partnership will be provided by BICI. The goal of the collaboratory is to create fundamental knowledge and innovative technologies in smart, open and sustainable manufacturing. It leverages technological advancements such as the industrial internet of things, rapid response and automated manufacturing machines. Research is expected to be undertaken at three sites: U-M, BICI and Peking University.


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