Changchun, China

Changchun – People’s Republic of China

Liaisons – Megan Brick & Ashvin Vibhakar


Sister City to Little Rock, Arkansas since April 5, 1994

Changchun is the capital and largest city of Jilin province, located at the northeast of the People’s Republic of China. The Changchun metropolitan area has a population of 7.6 million and a population of 3.3 million in its city proper—both figures from the 2010 census.

As capital of Jilin Province, Changchun has had a reputation as China’s “Automobile City”, “Film City”, “City of Science, Technology and Culture”, and a “Forest City” as well. With a strong industrial base, abundant agricultural resources, advanced scientific and technological infrastructure, and highly developed culture and education, the city is fast becoming one of the international modern cities in Northeast Asia.


Changchun is the Automobile City of China. The very first truck “Jiefang Truck” and the first sedan car “Red Flag” of PR China were manufactured in Changchun. Since then, automobile manufacturing has become the pillar industry of Changchun. The GDP per capita was ¥43,936 (ca. US$6,635) in 2010, ranked no. 59 among 659 Chinese cities.


Colleges and Universities

Jilin University (JLU) is a leading national university under the direct jurisdiction of China’s Ministry of Education. Located in Changchun, the capital city of Jilin Province in Northeastern China, the University has eight campuses in five districts which are home to thirty-nine colleges covering eleven academic disciplines, including philosophy, economics, law, literature, education, history, science, engineering, agriculture, medicine, and management. The University boasts sixteen disciplinary areas, five national key laboratories, and eight national bases for the development of basic science. Other resources include five research bases for humanities and social sciences, seven key laboratories sponsored by the Ministry of Education and eleven by other ministries of Chinese government.

JLU offers a variety of degree programs. It has now 115 undergraduate programs, 192 master’s degree program, 105 doctoral degree programs, and seventeen post-doctoral programs. The year of 2003 saw the enrollment of a total of 59,000-odd full time students among whom more than 10,000 are graduate students. At present there are 5700 faculty members, with fourteen members of Chinese Academy of Science and Chinese Academy of Engineering, 1270 full professors, and 1652 associate professors. This dedicated education community is a guarantee of excellence in teaching and research. For years, the University has been playing a major role in the educational, cultural and economic life of Northeast Region of China. In the beginning decade of the new century, the University is committed to achieving the status as one of the leading institutions for higher education well known in China and around the world.



Changchun is a new city with only about 200 years of history. Changchun started as a minor trading town. In the year of 1800, Emperor Jiaqing of Qing Dynasty selected a small village on the east bank of the Yitong River and named it as “Changchun Ting”, and in the year of 1889, it was promoted as “Changchun Fu”.

It expanded rapidly as the junction between of the Japanese-owned South Manchurian Railway and the Russian-owned Chinese Eastern Railway which had different rail gauges, as well as permit licenses, from 1905-1935. Changchun had railway repair shops and branch lines originating in Changchun extended into Korea and Inner Mongolia. In 1932, moving from Jilin City (Kirin city) 200 km. to the east, Changchun became the capital of Manchukuo, a state in Manchuria led by Pu Yi with the help from Japan, and which existed from 1931 to 1945. Then known as Hsinking, the capital was a well-planned city with broad avenues and modern public works. The city underwent rapid expansion in both its economy and infrastructures.


Location in Jilin Province

Severely damaged during World War 2, it was invaded by the Soviet Red Army in 1945, who looted the city of everything they could. The Russians maintained a presence in the city after the Chinese civil war until 1956. Kuomintang forces occupied the city in 1946, but were unable to hold the countryside against Chinese Communist forces. The city fell to the communists in 1948 after a 12-month-long siege by the People’s Liberation Army that resulted in a massive famine with a civilian death toll of 100,000 to 300,000.

Renamed Changchun by the People’s Republic of China government, it became the capital of Jilin in 1954. From the 1950s, it was designated to become a center for China’s automotive industry. The famous Red Flag limousines were made in Changchun as were the Liberation (Jiefang) trucks based on a Ford model used in Russia who supplied much of the early manufacturing machinery.

Changchun Municipal Peoples Government decided to build an International Sister City Sculpture Park in the South of Changchun, which is in front of Changchun Municipal People’s Government offices and across from the Changchun World Sculpture Park. The theme of International Sister City Sculpture Park is “Friendship, Exchanges and Development”. The purpose of building the park is to promote exchanges with Sister Cities, offering an international platform for showcasing the national culture & art of its Sister Cities.



Michael Warrick, a professor of sculpture at UALR, was invited to create a work of sculpture for the park during a 30 day stay in Changchun in conjunction with the 9th Changchun China International Sculpture Symposium from late July to early September, 2008.

Visit the Changchun City Government home page:

Madam Wu Lan, Vice Mayor of Changchun at the Arkansas Capitol


 Commissioner Michell, Former Commissioner Lacewell and Tina Tian with members of the Changchun Delegation

 Members of the LRSCC with Changchun visitors at City Hall