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Agora ELITE Education Model2023 New Year Resolution, Looking Back and Ahead

Agora ELITE Education Model


2023 New Year Resolution, Looking Back and Ahead


With China’s relaxation policy on COVID-19, there is now consensus on living with the pandemic. The New Year of 2023 ahead is full hope and prosperity but also uncertainty. EICC and its global team has now gone through the various stages of the Coronavirus, including Alpha, Delta, and Omicron. However, after two years since we officially re-launched, EICC has new moved to a new stage.


Thanks to the entrepreneurial spirit, faith, hardworking, diligence, perseverance, resilience, commitment, engagement and contribution of co-founders, founding members, partners and collaborators, innovators and investors, colleagues and friends, with endless and non-stopping online and offline meetings and discussions, we have overcome many hurdles in making tremendous progress and great achievements within two years out of expectation. As planned, we have two phases of the projects - The first phase is that we have self-creation of income generation while the second phase is that we apply the university title and degree-awarding-power.



A Revolution in the Global Higher Education


When MOOC was launched in 2008, it was only twenty-five students attended the course on the campus of the University of Manitoba while 2300 from around the world participated online. Hardly anybody could predicate that over one billion students around the world have to study online courses in 2020 after 12 years of the birth of MOOC. Today more emerging online innovative universities have begun to penetrate into the global higher education systems which post challenges in changing the traditional university model of 800 years old. When Professor Clayton Christensen published his book Innovation University in 2010, the main message that he wanted to convey was that 50% of the private universities will go bankruptcy if they do not understand the emerging technology and innovation. He could not imagine that his concept of Innovation University has to fact in the impact of COVID-19.

Successful MOA Signing Ceremony between MIT/AIT and EICC

21st December, 2022, Tunis


However, interestingly, I delivered my keynote on ELITE O2O Initiative for Creating Innovative and Entrepreneurial University in the Global Higher Education at MoE Conference, 2016, Wenzhou, China. The ELITE O2O Education Concept that I created based upon the effectiveness and efficiency of knowledge transfer – Explicit knowledge can be delivered and transferred online while tacit knowledge has to be delivered face-to-face. Consequently, I delivered my keynote on Perspective of ELITE O2O Innovation University: A Revolution in the Global Higher Education in Post COVID-19 Era as a signal of formal launch of EICC at University President Forum, CAHE 2020 Annual Conference, Zhengzhou University.

Successful MOA Virtual Signing Ceremony between EICC and HEEC, Morocco, 8th December, 2022


What is Agora ELITE Education Model?

Christensen is always remembered as the founder of “disruptive innovation theory”. It describes the way in which new entrants in a market can disrupt the established business. If disruptive innovation has winners, losers and changers, then we must adapt. The ways that we access, transform, create, control and disseminate knowledge has changed radically since MOOC was born. As knowledge continues to take primacy in society, the university’s primacy over knowledge erodes. Long the traditional generator, validator and manager of knowledge with its key role of teaching and certifying talent and skill of the next generation, the traditional university is no longer in charge.


As technology innovation creates a near zero-marginal cost world, therefore, the core business model of the university is both threatened and also offered new ways to make significant impacts on both quality and affordability of education and scholarship through global engagement and worldwide connective networks. As established previously, MOOCs and other online course options not only revolutionize the way that programmes and courses are taught but they also revolutionize the business model under which the university operates. Technological innovations and business model effects do not stop at MOOCs, however, there will be new business models as substitute.

Successful MOA Virtual Signing Ceremony between GEELY Talent Development Group and EICC, 26th August, 2022


We are proud that we have pioneered Agora ELITE Education model and the subsequent ELITE Business Model, which is pivotal and convincing in tackling the challenges and opportunities in the post COVID-19 era. Agora, a Greek word, means a public space used for assemblies and market. The literal meaning of the word "agora" is "gathering place" or "assembly". In our terminology, the “gathering place”, is not only physical but also virtual, which means online and offline. ELITE is an acronym of e-learning of innovation, technology, and entrepreneurship within an O2O Innovation University@[1] in the global higher education. Agora and ELITE have organic relation which complement each other and are instrumental in providing philosophical answers to the challenges and opportunities of GHE in the post COVID-19 era.


Almost all the universities and colleges are currently delivering courses online based upon the MOOC experiences since the outbreak of Covid-19. In fact, there is similarities of online delivery around the globe as universities and colleges have been forced to do so. The strategic intention of establishment of Agora ELITE Innovative Education Model is an exploration of an innovative education pedagogy of integrating the delivery of programmes, knowledge, contents and education ethos with a global vision embedded in the teaching and learning strategy built into the technological system of O2O university. This technological innovation system demonstrates how various features and objectives of innovative and entrepreneurial university is created, translated, articulated and achieved in a learning organization context.


We welcome government and private sector to partner with us to structure the upgrade and provide the incentives along with key venture capital to support Agora ELITE Education Model innovation and develop it as the future of the global higher education and nurture it into sustainability.


Looking Back


We would like to summarize the followings aspects related with the great achievements that we have made. With sharing a great vision, we have made the self-creation of income generation via collaboration with degree awarding power partners. We are proud and honored being co-branded and have strategic collaboration with the following renowned institutions:

  1. Trinity Western University (TWU), Canada

  2. Davis College (DC), USA

  3. International University of Applied Science (IU), Germany

  4. University of the West of Scotland (UWS), UK

  5. Canterbury Christ Church (CCCU), UK

We are now able to offer and delivery degree and undergraduate, postgraduate, taught and research programmes in Cambridge with our partners.


We are also proud that we have developed our own well-established and featured programmes as follows:

  • ELITE Global Talent Programme – Passport Programme

  • EICC Well-crafted Executive Development Programmes (EDP)

  • Chief Innovation Officer

  • Global Leadership for Women

  • Transformational Leadership Embraces Innovation

  • Leadership and Management for Academic Excellence in GHE


EICC-TWU Co-branded Programmes

We are proud to be co-branded with TWU to deliver EICC-TWU Co-branded programmes with Agora ELITE O2O innovative Structure with the following arrangements and strategic planning:

  • EICC/TWU Co-Branded Certificate - Undergraduate Level Certificate in Global Innovation Leadership (CGIL)

  • EICC/TWU Co-Branded Certificate - Graduate Level Certificate in Advanced Innovation Leadership and Impact (CAILI)

2022-2023 Academic Year Commencement Event

On Wednesday, 28 September 2022, ELITE Innovation College Cambridge (EICC) held its first Commencement Event in both online and offline format with pre-recorded videos from EICC global students, faculties, and global partners and friends, live at Wolfson College of University of Oxford as well as remotely through Zoom. The event celebrates the start of a new academic year, bringing together 100 + global students, staff, and global partners to mark the momentous occasion.


EICC-AIT Co-branded Education Business Model


I am very pleased that we have signed MOA with Professor Mondher Bellalah, the Founder and Chairman of MIT (and three other colleges), Tunisia, with the witness of Professor Ahmed Friaa, Former Tunisian Minister of Education. According to the agreement, both parties remain committed, and make contribution to the establishment of EICC-AIT co-branded campus – Al Kindi Institute of Technology, we will focus on the contribution of its soft capacity building, including branding, education innovation model and business model, IP, strategic planning, global academic resources and its international programmes and curriculum while our Tunisian partner will focus on the contribution of hard capacity building, including hard infrastructure, strategic investment, operational cost, familiarity of local strategy and policy, governmental relations, sources of students and marketing capacity.


The parties share a great vision in tackling the challenges and opportunities in the global higher education and enabling Tunisia to become the Singapore of Africa. The significant signing of the MOA in Tunis demonstrates that Agora ELITE education model that we have strong capacity of survival and but also its education business model is convincing which can be duplicated elsewhere.

Professor Richard Li-Hua welcomed and signed MOA with Dr Janhavi Inamdar, Director of Global Engagement, PCET Education Foundation, at EICC Headquarters, ST John’s Innovation Centre, Cambridge, 29th July, 2022


A Global Vision with Global Partners


We are honored to be strategic partners with the following global partners:


  • Mediterranean Institute of Technology, Tunisia

  • Zhengzhou Sias University, China

  • Guangzhou University of Technology and Business, China

  • Xi'an Peihua University, China

  • AED, Ankara, Turkey

  • Dibyahbumi Multiple College, Affiliated with Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal

  • IHET, Tunisia

  • Oil and Gas Institute of Monastir, Tunisia

  • HEEC Business College, Morocco

  • PCET Foundation, India

  • The Polytechnic Ibadan, Nigeria

  • ASEAN OBOR Research Academy, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • Docsity, Italy

  • Tajdid, Kuwait

  • UOSD, Iraq

  • SPI, Porto, Portugal

  • U Knowledge, Libya

  • Flex Major School Inc, Brazil

  • GEELY University, Sanya, China

  • GEELY University, Chengdu, China

  • GEELY University, Nanning, China

  • GEELY University, Xiangtan. China

  • The Polytechnic Ibadan, Nigeria

  • ASEAN OBOR Research Academy, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • GLEN Education, Beijing


Professor Richard Li-Hua welcomed and signed EICC-TWU Co-branded Strategic Collaboration with Professor Phillip Laird, Vice President, Global Engagement, Trinity Western University, Canada, 11th May, 2022, at EICC Headquarters, ST John's Innovation Centre, Cambridge


Looking Ahead

Looking ahead, the Year of 2023 presents us with enormous opportunities with challenges. However, with the solid footing that we have built and we have now moved to a new stage. The attributes and spirit have been built into the blood and DNA of the College. We are confident with our global talented team members in an entrepreneurial learning organization, we will undertake all the challenges and overcome all the obstacles and difficulties in making Agora ELITE Education Model successful and its business model prevailing.


Firstly, we will streamline our recruitment, application, and admission of students to TWU/IU/DC/CCCU through our global agencies and strategic advisors while we start making the articulation arrangement and double-degree arrangement with our global academic partners. Also we will prioritize the delivery of our own programmes, including, ELITE Global Talent Programmes (EGTP) and Executive Development Programmes (EDPs) as well as ELITE Summer/Winter School Programmes.


We will need take all the necessary measures and activities, such as, EICC weekly Global Higher Education Innovation Forum, EICC weekly Global Engagement and Recruitment Forum, to achieve our recruitment target to deliver our financial sustainability.


Secondly, we will continue to delivery our monthly Global Innovation Webinar (GIW), annual Global University President Forum (GUPF) and World Peace Conference so as to increase our international visibility, to build our global reputation, strong marketing position and to achieve multiple-revenue stream. Also we will allow our ELITE fellows and students to participate in these activities so as to enhance the student journey and experiences.


Thirdly, we will make consolidation of our office well-equipped at St Johns Innovation Centre, Cambridge, and also consolidate our relations with Oxbridge Universities so as to achieve our offering holistic education and affordable education via reframing Oxbridge model. We will get registration with OfS and subsequently submission of application of university title and degree-awarding-power.


Finally, we will consolidate our global academic and administrative team.


Stanford University was founded in 1885 and rebuilt after the devastating 1906 earthquake and it became the world-famous Stanford today. Henley Business School was set up in 1945 during the Second World War at Henley-on-Thames and it became a global known institution today. ELITE Innovation College Cambridge (EICC) has been known as “the little peach tree borne in Tsinghua in 2006 and grown up and settled in Cambridge in 2014”. However, our college was re-launched in late 2020 during the pandemic, which has a strong capability of survival.

[1] Please see further details on Working Paper ELITE Initiative for Creating Innovative and Entrepreneurial University in the Global Higher Education presented by Richard Li-Hua at MoE Conference, 2016, Wenzhou, China.

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