In November 2015, the Institute of the Belt and Road of Jiangsu Normal University was jointly established by the University and Xuzhou government. In July 2016, it was set up as a key provincial cultivation think tank by Department of Publicity of CPC Jiangsu Committee. In March 2017, a branch of Institute of the Belt and Road was jointly established by the Institute and the University of the Punjab, Pakistan. The research field of the Institute covers economics, history, literature, law, education and other disciplines. Its major research foci are placed on the five fields related to the Belt and Road initiative:
1. Opening to the outside world and Jiangsu development;
2. International Trade and national relations;
3. Historical culture and tourism development;
4. Study abroad and talent training;
5. Language competence and international communication. With regard to development orientation, the Institute puts construction of a new type of think-tank with Chinese characteristics as its general guidelines, so as to build cakey research base for international and regional issues. In accordance with the general requirements of keeping a foothold in Jiangsu, serving the whole country, and facing the world, the Institute continues to deepen the reform of management system, to innovate the organization and operation mechanism, to improve the ability and level of the scientific research, decision-making consultation, cooperation and communication by means of collaborative innovation. The objective is to build a regional leading think tank with acertain international influence and reputation which can serve for the Belt and Road initiatives, provide strong theoretical and intellectual support for the implementation of the Belt and Road initiative in China and expansion of new space for opening and development in Jiangsu.