Since its founding in 1898, Peking University has played a central role in China’s modern history. Established as the country’s first comprehensive institute for higher education during the Hundred Days of Reform of the Guangxu Emperor, it has educated many of China’s leading scientific, literary, and political figures, including famous writers such as Lu Xun and Shen Congwen, as well as the Nobel Prize-winning scientists Tsung-Dao Lee and Tu Youyou.
In the tumultuous years following the Qing Dynasty’s collapse, the university was a hotbed of intellectual activity in the new Chinese republic. Students and faculty of Peking University were the main participants in the radical May Fourth Movement in 1919, a major intellectual and cultural development that has shaped Chinese society and politics ever since.
Peking University has continued to play a seminal role in China’s modernization, and has been at the forefront of all of the country’s important intellectual movements. Widely regarded as China’s leading comprehensive institution of higher learning, Peking University topped the Times Higher Education BRICS & Emerging Economies Rankings in 2016, as it has done every year since its inception in 2014.
With its innovative, interdisciplinary curriculum and rigorously selected cohort of young scholars from around the world, the Yenching Academy is serving to enhance the educational excellence at Peking University.