Switzerland and China signed their first scientific cooperation framework agreement in 1989. Since then, bilateral scientific cooperation developed and diversified substantially. Today, many Swiss Higher Education Institutions have their own partnerships and collaboration agreements with partners in China in place.
In 2008, Switzerland launched the Bilateral Porgrammes with numerous countries, including China. The Bilateral Programmes consist of larger-scale Joint Research Projected, conducted by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) and its partner agencies in China. Additionally, the Leading House Asia, ETH Zürich, sets up cooperation and funding instruments for smaller, innovative pilot projects.
Since 2003, the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) maintains a bilateral Joint Committee Meeting (JCM) with the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST).