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The university, approved by the Ministry of Education, is a joint project between Shanghai municipal government and CAS.
Yin Jie, deputy director of the Shanghai Education Committee, said: "The university will act as a dynamic hub where research, education and innovation will meet to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to learning about, and solving problems facing society," said Yin.
"Its research will be commercialized to serve the country's economic and social development."
Yin said the university, covering an area of about 84 hectares, is designed to be small with its four colleges expecting to have 800 professional teachers from overseas institutions and CAS providing courses on material, life, information and management sciences.
It will focus on pursuing excellence, promoting collaboration with those who share the same vision, Yin said.
The university is designed to have a capacity of 2,000 undergraduate and 4,000 postgraduate students when it opens in 2014, he said.