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From the Dean


The School of Life Sciences at Peking University is nearing its 100th anniversary. Its predecessor, the Biology Department established in 1925, was one of the first biology departments in China. Its resilience was put to test when in 1937 the Japanese occupied Beijing. The Biology Department relocated to the then remote Yunan province and continued its education and research activities under excruciating conditions. It returned to Beijing in 1946 with two majors at the time – Botany and Zoology. In 1952, an infusion of expertise from the biology departments from Tsinghua University and Yenching University made the Biology Department at Peking University the best in China, boasting tens of the top biologists in China at the time in the same department. Since then, more disciplines were added, resulting in its currently broad teaching and research portfolio ranging from microbiology to neurobiology and from molecular biology to ecology. In 1993, the School of Life Sciences (also known as the College of Life Sciences) was founded to reflect the growing life sciences disciplines. By now, the School houses 76 independent research groups working at the forefront of biology, two National Key Laboratories and a key laboratory supported by the Ministry of Education, and oversees the operation of the Animal Facility and the Core facility that houses instrumentation and provides supports in genomics, microscopy (including cryo electron microscopy), biochemistry, proteomics, and metabolomics across Peking University and the nation.

The School has on-going international collaborations and exchange programs and welcomes more collaborative partners from around the world. The School also partners with global corporations such as Bayer HealthCare Company Ltd. and Boehringer Ingelheim. In the QS World University Rankings by Subject, Peking University ranks 32nd in biological sciences in the world and 1st in China.

A word to our alumni: I am sure that, like myself, your experiences at the School of Life Sciences at Peking University changed your life. We will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of our college on May 4th, 2025, and you are welcome to join us in this celebration. If you wish to give back to our college, please contact Mr. Chao Liu at gsmyyh@pku.edu.cn.