In terms of transferring knowledge, China has made “dramatic progress” in setting up all kinds of science and innovation parks, Dr. Dahlman said. “I think we are very lucky to have with us one of the key people behind that,” referring to speaker Lou Jing of China’s Ministry of Education. The panel also featured presidents from two universities. Charles Vest, president of the National Academy of Engineering, also is president emeritus of Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dan Mott from the University of Maryland, that is very active in technology transfer. The panel also includes a presentation by Ginger Lew of the Obama Administration on setting up university innovation clusters in the United States. “We are going to have a very rich discussion,” he said. He urged each of the speakers to think of concrete areas and specific projects for further collaboration.
Ministry of Education
Universities play a very important role in China’s strategy to build an innovation society, explained Ms. Lou, deputy director of the Ministry of Education’s Department of Science and Technology.
China has an “ecosystem of innovation that is diverse, stable, and self-adjustable, and flexible,” Ms. Lou said. China’s goal is to be a leading source of research and development to “promote the development of the economy and society of China and even help develop global science and technology and world civilization,” she said. Universities are an essential element in this innovation environment. Other innovation communities in this environment include the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, corporate R&D departments, research institutes specializing in economics and in social development, and the Chinese research organizations of multinationals such as IBM, Intel, and Cisco. This ecosystem also includes public-service organizations that evaluate patents and provide intermediary services. Ms. Lou described this environment as a “system of innovation with Chinese characteristics.”
The foundation of an innovation environment is a “knowledge innovation system that organically combines scientific research and higher education,” Ms. Lou said. “This system’s core, breakthrough point is business-based, market-oriented, and comprised of industry, academia, and research.” To produce distinct results, Ms. Lou said, the