Recently, the ICDE Election Committee sent a letter of congratulation to Dr. Yang Zhijian on his re-election as a member of the new Executive Committee of the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE). The new Executive Committee will serve a four year term, from Jan. 1, 2014 to Dec. 31, 2017. 

ICDE was established in 1938, and is an organization with global membership recognized by UNESCO. It is also the most authoritative, largest and longest established professional organization in the distance education field. It mainly engages in the promotion of online, flexible and blended learning, working together with UNESCO for international cooperation and educational development. At present, the institution has more than 130 members, of which 33% are from Asia, 27% from Europe, 13% from North America. The other members are from Africa, Australia, Latin America and the Caribbean. 

In December this year, 3 members of ICDE 6-member Executive Committee will retire. The OUC took an active part in the election of 3 new members of the 2014-2017 Executive Committee, which began in June. At the beginning of September, in the vote of 130 members, Yang Zhijian was once again elected as a member of the new Executive Committee. 

The election of President Yang Zhijian is a recognition by international bodies of the achievements of the OUC and distance education in China which will enhance the influence of the OUC in the international distance education field, creating favorable conditions to develop international cooperation and more cooperation with partners through the ICDE platform. 

By Niu Ben, the OUC