Sylvain Ferrari, the new ParisTech representative in China

Sylvain Ferrari took up his role as the new ParisTech representative in China on 9 March 2015. In this interview, Sylvain takes look back on his path to China and the projects and ambitions for increasing the standing of ParisTech in the country.

What led you to take up the position of ParisTech representative in China?
Having begun my professional career in the United States, the decision to once again become an expat is the result of a desire, both personal and family, to go out and discover a foreign land.
This materialised very quickly, as my partner was offered a post as a cultural attaché for literature and the exchange of ideas at the French Embassy in China. It was at this time that the position of ParisTech representative in China surfaced.
The professional, human and personal challenges that accompany the possibility of a long-term placement in a country such as China represent a unique and interesting opportunity for both of us.
What are the first concrete actions that you are going to carry out when you start your new role?
The initial part of my time in China will be dedicated to observation and listening.
I expect to meet partners from academia, local industry and institutions and ParisTech alumni in order to get to know their requirements and expectations. I will inform them of the new ParisTech positioning with regards higher education and research in France. On this basis, I will determine, in collaboration with the ParisTech management and the management of its Grandes Écoles, the opportunities for development and for innovative projects.
If I had to identify a few initial concrete actions, I hope to be able to quickly contribute to the ParisTech relocation programmes in China: l’École d’ingénieur ParisTech Shanghai Jiao Tong, the ICARE (China–EU Institute for Clean And Renewable Energy) programme and the IFCIM (The Franco-Sino Institute of Engineering and Management).
Another of my priorities will be to capitalise on the long relationship between ParisTech and the China Scholarship Council in order to formalise our cooperation on current and upcoming projects.
I will make the most of my time shared between Shanghai and Beijing to outline, in 2015, an ambitious partnership with a Beijing university whilst at the same time making sure to establish a balanced ParisTech presence ParisTech between the different partners.

The ParisTech Grandes Écoles