ZUEL and Italy

Contributing to the New Blueprint for Chinese-Italian Cooperation - the Bond Between ZUEL and Italy

President Xi Jinping paid a state visit to Italy from March 21st to 24th. On March 23, China and Italy signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the “Belt and Road Initiative”. The signing of Chinese-Italian memorandum is a milestone in the development of the “Belt and RoadInitiative” and has also opened a new chapter in bilateral relations.The bond between ZUEL and Italy has a long history. In recent years, exchanges and cooperation between China and Italy in various fields have continued to deepen. 

The Grand Opening of the Chinese-Italian Academy in Rome Will Be Soon

As early as the 1990s, ZUEL had established intercollegiate partnership with an Italian university.

Sapienza University of Rome (Sapienza- Università di Roma) is an open university with a long history and owns the largest number of teachers and students in Italy. It has nearly 20,000 faculty members and a student registration system. Currently, there are 147,000 students. Since 2016, ZUEL has had great achievements in communication and cooperation with Sapienza University of Rome. ZUEL has established Chinese-Italian Law Research Center and Chinese Law Library in Sapienza University of Rome. We have jointly held an international academic conference, exchanged scholars' visit lectures, offered student exchange programs and Chinese-Italian Innovative Talents Cooperative Training Program funded by China Scholarship Council, and programs for excellent undergraduates.


On May 7, 2018, Professor Luan Yongyu, the Party Secretary of ZUEL, met with Professor Eugenio Gaudio, the president of Sapienza University of Rome, who paid a visit to ZUEL. The president, Professor Yang Canming, had a meeting with the guests. The two sides fully exchanged views on strengthening the cooperation between the two universities and expanding the areas of discipline cooperation between the two universities. Both sides agreed that in the new era of socialism with Chinese characteristics, the two universities can make new cooperative achievements in running schools and expanding areas of disciplines.

The two sides signed Letter of Intent on the Establishment of Chinese-Italian Academy at Zhongnan University of Economics and Law and Agreement on Starting ‘European Studies: Comparative Law and European Law’ Postgraduate Education Cooperation Project. Promoting cooperation and building Chinese-Italian Academy as one of the major works of cooperation and exchanges between the two universities will deepen the cooperation and training of specialized talents in the field of law in the two universities, and the cooperation in European Studies: Comparative Law and European Law master's degree education in our school will help cultivate high-quality and compound talents with international vision and a good knowledge of European law. The academy will provide students in the project with opportunities for internship in international organizations and channels for working in international organizations.

In the coming April, the “Chinese-Italian Academy” jointly established by our school and Sapienza University of Rome will be open. The friendly cooperation between ZUEL and Italy will also usher in a new chapter.

ZUEL’s First Overseas Research Base Settled in Italy, President of Italy Attended the Ceremony

In January 2017, ZUEL cooperated with Sapienza University of Rome to establish the first overseas research base, named “Chinese-Italian Law Research Center”. The signing ceremony was held in famous Carraso classroom in Sapienza University of Rome. President of the Republic of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, attended the inauguration ceremony. About 100 guests, including guests from the Italian Ministry of Education, the dean of other universities’ law schools, Qi Han of the Chinese Embassy in Italy, and Education Counselor Luo Ping.


President Matarella said that Law School of Zhongnan University of Economics and Law and Law School in Sapienza University of Rome are representatives of high-level legal research bases of the two countries. Adhering to the principle of mutual complementarity and mutual benefit, in-depth cooperation should be strengthened in research, talent development, achievements transformation and social services.

In his speech, President Yang Canming promised to build the legal research center into a model of Chinese-Italian legal education cooperation with joint efforts of both sides. The two presidents signed a cooperation agreement and unveiled the research center. As a bridge for legal research exchanges between the two universities and the two countries, the Chinese-Italian Law Research Center has gained attention of academic circles and practical departments since its establishment two years ago.


In March 2017, Italian Minister of Education Valeria Fedeli attended the opening ceremony of the Chinese Law Library (Rome) of the Chinese-Italian Law Research Center and unveiled it with Yao Li, Vice President of ZUEL. In her speech, Yao Li said that the establishment of Chinese Law Library (Rome) is of great significance, which is conducive to the spread of Chinese law in Italy, the understanding and research of Chinese legal system by Italian scholars, the deepening of academic exchanges between Chinese and Italian law researchers, and the cooperation to jointly promote the development of Roman law and Chinese law. Italian Minister of Education Valeria Fedeli said that the establishment of Chinese Law Library means that the cooperation between China and Italy in the field of legal research has reached a higher level, and it has also set a benchmark for cooperation in other disciplines. The Italian Ministry of Education will also strongly support the project and strive to build the library into the best Chinese law library in Europe.

Frequent Academic Cooperation and Cultural Exchanges

ZUEL has established cooperative relations with the University of Trento, Università degli studi di Napoli Federico II, Università degli Studi di Roma Tor Vergata, and Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore UCSC. The mutual exchanges between teachers and students has also been going in an orderly way. In 2016, the Law School of ZUEL and the Law School of the Sapienza University of Rome signed an agreement on cooperative research and teaching. The Chinese-Italian cooperation and exchanges of our university has embarked on a fast track. 

In recent years, Professor Oliviero Diliberto of Sapienza University of Rome, Professor Riccardo Cardilli of Università degli Studi di Roma Tor Vergata, Professor Francesco Bestagno of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore UCSC, Professor Luca Nogler, former Dean of the Law School of University of Trento, and the Justice of the Italian Constitutional Court, Professors of the University of Trento, Chairman of the Center for Administrative Studies (Italy), Professor Daria De Pretis, Editor-in-Chief of the Italian Public Law Journal, and many other experts and scholars have come to ZUEL to give lectures and participate in teaching programs. At the end of 2016, he served as Italian Minister of Justice, General Secretary of the Italian Communist Party, and served as a four-session representative of the Italian parliament. Oliviero Diliberto, the chief professor of Roman law at the Sapienza University of Rome, was hired as a “Wenlan scholar”. A number of full-time teachers in the law school of ZUEL also go to Italian universities to study or pursue a degree.

In 2018, our university received the notice from China Scholarship Council, and the Chinese-Italian “One Belt, One Road” Innovative International Legal Talent Training Project submitted by our Law School was funded. Since 2018, the National Scholarship Fund will facilitate the development of our school's project and study at the Sapienza University of Rome, the University of Trento, t Università degli studi di Napoli Federico II, Università degli Studi di Roma Tor Vergata for Ph.D. degree or visiting Ph.D. students. This project will rely on the “world-class discipline” platform of our law studies, make full use of the outstanding academic resources of Italian universities and the high-quality internship of our university in the Italian judiciary system, and focus on cultivating innovative, high-caliber talents who have good proficiency in Chinese law, Italian law and EU law and excel in Chinese, Italian and English languages. Only after those talents with international vision and practical ability are familiar with the Chinese and Italian cultures, can they serve Chinese and Italian judicial practice and promoting Chinese-Italian cultural exchanges.

At present, our Law School has sent national innovative talents of international cooperation training project, exchange students, visiting Ph.D. students, and interns to the International Institute for the Unification of Private Laws. This is the first time that ZUEL has sent interns to international organizations. The dispatch of intern students is also a substantial measure for the university to actively support China's opening-up strategy. Since 2017, a total of 12 students from Italy have come to our university for exchange studies or study for a degree. One of the Italy students, Argentieri Asja, participated in the Chinese Language Contest for International Students during the study in ZUEL. She also learned Chinese paintings and displayed Han Chinese clothing with Chinese students.

Over the years, Chinese-Italian cultural exchanges have also been common in the campus of Zhongnan University of Economics and Law. In 2006, the Chinese and Italian Years were determined by the Chinese and Italian governments. At the same year, Professor Renata Amarti of Italy took a special trip to Zhongnan University of Economics and Law to give a lecture on Understanding Italy for teachers and students, which opened the prelude of theme event of  Taking a Closer Look at Italy: Humanities around the World . The Italian Embassy in China sent a congratulatory letter to the event. During the two-week period, the university held a series of academic lectures, Italian film appreciation, Serie A football commentary competition and Italian photo exhibitions, all of which have enrich our knowledge of the exotic charm of Apennine Peninsula.

During the 70th anniversary celebration of Zhongnan University of Economics and Law in 2018, Bota, the vice president of Sapienza University of Rome, attended the momentous event. Giuseppe Nesi, Dean of the Law School of the University of Trento, attended the Principal's Forum. The band of Conservatorio S. Pietro a Majella di NAPOLI performed the traditional Chinese song Jasmine and two Italian classic songs, which contributed to the 70th anniversary of ZUEL as a meaningful gift.

Mr. Ivan, An Ambassador Between Chinese and Italian Culture

Reporter Chen Bo

Ivan Cardillo, who was born in 1984 in Italy, entered the postdoctoral mobile station of the School of Law in 2013, during which he was engaging in the study of Chinese-Italian comparative law. In 2015, he stayed on the university as a researcher at the Chinese-Italian Law Research Center. On the opening day of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, Ivan built a personal home page called “China Law” in Italian. And he spent two days translating the Xinhua News Agency’s report entitled Xi Jinping’s words: the new era of socialism with Chinese characteristics is the guide for the party and the people to strive for the great renaissance of the Chinese nation and the 19th CPC National Congress's Determination on the Constitution of the Communist Party of China (Amendment). He published the translation on his newly-created personal homepage as soon as possible, which aroused widespread attention from the Italian government and its society. The newspaper People's Daily reported his deeds with the report The Westerners are also paying attention to the 19th National Congress: An Italian Teacher Translated the Report of the 19th National Congress.

Ivan writes article for the National News Agency of Italy as a teacher of Zhongnan University of Economics and Law

Ivan writes article for the website of the Chinese Culture Research Institute affiliated to the Italian Parliament

In recent days, Ivan has been closely watching the news that Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Italy. Seeing the news that China and Italy signed a memorandum of understanding on the joint promotion of the “Belt and Road Initiative”, Ivan and the members of the China Association of Italian Scholars were very excited: “This is the first country of the G7 that signed such a deal with China”.

Ivan is now the president of the China Association of Italian Scholars. Among the approximately 150 members, he is the only one who can open classes in Chinese. Since 2017, he has been translated articles of the 19th National Congress in his self-built Italian website. After being reported among many popular media both in China and Italy, including the People’s Daily, he has become a new star among Italians in China and is often invited to participate in events hosted by Italian Embassy in China, the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and some NGOs, all of which have furthered his dream of becoming  Marco Polo of the new era .

The Chinese Culture Institute, affiliated to the Italian Parliament, hired Ivan as an advisor. On March 11, on the eve of President Xi Jinping's visit to Italy, the website of the Institute published the Importance of President Xi's visit to Italy and Europe written by Ivan, which enhanced the understanding of Italian politicians on this visit and received wide attention.

The Italian National News Agency also opened a personal column for him to introduce Chinese laws and the “Belt and Road” initiative. At present, he has published three articles on the revision of the Chinese Constitution, the legislation of the Chinese Civil Code, and the “Belt and Road”. Recently, the Italian newspaper Republic has been drafted with him. The theme is about the basic characteristics of the Belt and Road and will be published soon.

Ivan said that due to language reasons, the Italians have little understanding of China and the “Belt and Road”. Most people are greatly influenced by the Western media, and there are many rhythms of distorting and smearing. This makes Ivan feel very anxious. As one of the few Italians who are proficient in Chinese listening, speaking, reading and writing, Ivan feels the responsibility to introduce China to his country objectively and accurately. Therefore, despite facing great teaching and academic pressure, Ivan still insists on building his website, freely translating some important materials of China, and objectively introducing China's political, economic, legal, and social aspects.

During the winter vacation, Ivan also returned to his alma mater, the University of Trento, to offer Chinese law courses for local students. He has accepted the invitation and will return to give a lecture on Chinese Studies in the summer vacation of 2019. The students in this Chinese Studies class come from all over the world and even Chinese students. Students from all over the world are learning about China. This is a very interesting phenomenon. Ivan said.

Ivan said that he also plans to write a letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping about his study and life in China and to improve the communication between the Chinese and Italian people. I believe President Xi Jinping will certainly read the letter and give him a compliment. 

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