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Together: Building a World Textile Education Community


This year marks the 10th anniversary of the proposal of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). It also coincides with the 5th anniversary of the establishment of the ‘Belt and Road’ World Textile University Alliance, which was initiated by Donghua University (DHU). The 4th Annual Conference of the World Textile University Alliance (WTUA) – 2023 WTUA Annual Conference was held concurrently with the 2nd International Conference on Advanced Science and Technology in Textiles at Donghua University.

The theme of 2023 WTUA Annual Conference is ‘Sustainability For All: Creating Inclusive Pathways to Development’ which highlights our academic community's commitment to promoting inclusive growth and development, resonating deeply with the global challenges and responsibilities that humanity faces.

During the welcome speech at the conference, Professor Li Wei, Vice President of DHU, highlighted that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) proposed in 2015 have reshaped the global approach towards eradicating poverty, fostering prosperity, and addressing climate change. As we have now reached the halfway point, it is important for WTUA member universities to further commit themselves to promoting technological advancements and artistic design in the textile, apparel, and related industries, as well as contributing to the talent and economic development in Belt and Road (B&R) countries. Through the promotion of high-quality educational cooperation, we could provide the human and innovation resources needed for the collaborative construction of BRI. Together, we aim to establish a textile education community across B&R countries.

During the 2023 WTUA Annual Conference, experts, scholars and industry representatives from universities and organizations, including Donghua University, Wuhan Textile University, Tiangong University, Quanzhou Normal University, Zhongyuan University of Technology, South China Agricultural University, World Textile Information Network, National Textile University of Pakistan, University of Edinburgh, and University of Novi Sad, came together to exchange opinions and ideas. They engaged in extensive discussions regarding new strategies for sustainable development in the textile industry in countries along the B&R initiative. They shared innovative practices for achieving green and low-carbon development within their respective universities and countries. Additionally they explored new directions for the inclusive growth of WTUA in the future. These discussions further strengthened cooperation among those textile and fashion universities from B&R countries, offering technical and intellectual support for the construction of the BRI. This collaborative effort aims to promote environmentally-friendly, low-carbon, and sustainable development within the international textile industry.

It is reported that ‘Belt and Road’ World Textile University Alliance (WTUA) was initiated by Donghua University in 2018, in active response to BRI. It is a non-corporate academic organization formed by prominent universities from China, Belt and Road countries, as well as renowned institutions specializing in textile and fashion, clothing engineering, design, and technological innovation worldwide. Currently, there are 37 member universities from 19 different countries participating in WTUA.