The following HTML text is provided to enhance online
readability. Many aspects of typography translate only awkwardly to HTML.
Please use the page image
as the authoritative form to ensure accuracy.
China and Global Change: Opportunities for Collaboration
response. Second, CAS has a national research infrastructure covering all of the scientific disciplines relevant to global change. And third, CAS is perceived by other Chinese institutions as having responsibility for basic research, and global change is perceived as basic science.
CAS is based on the Soviet model of creating institutes organized around specific disciplines, and it currently is composed of 123 institutes, the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, 22 open laboratories, a few of which are also national key laboratories,4 affiliated corporations, and a library. CAS institutes can confer degrees; 118 award master's degrees and 83 award Ph.Ds. Personnel number over 80,000, approximately two-thirds of which are scientists or technicians. In China, CAS is considered the leading scientific institution for basic research in China. Currently, approximately onequarter of its research is considered basic, which is still more than other institutions in China (CAS undated a). However, since the early 1980s, CAS has been increasingly emphasizing applied research.
Five of nine subcenters for World Data Center (WDC)-D are located in CAS institutions, where the following databases are maintained: renewable natural resources and the environment data at the Commission for Integrated Survey of Natural Resources (CISNAR); astronomy data at the Beijing Astronomical Observatory; glaciology and geocryology data at the Lanzhou Institute of Glaciology and Geocryology; geophysical data at the Institute of Geophysics; and space science data at the Research Center for Space Science and Applications.
Institutes within CAS do collaborate, but often it is along disciplinary lines for specific larger projects, often with little or no integrative function incorporated into the project design. CAS has recently begun to reform its personnel policies to encourage movement of scientists among institutions in ways that would make collaboration easier. Also, as mentioned above, the development of the open laboratory system is specifically designed to increase staff mobility, improve the quality of research, reduce duplication, and build links to non-CAS and foreign researchers and institutions; these are important and positive steps.
Although CAS was not completely disabled during the Cultural Revolution, it was decentralized. Since the mid-1970s, CAS has recentralized somewhat, although it retains a system of 12 branches that have a voice in their local institutes' research and funding. Overall, institutes have quite a bit of autonomy, which they exercise as funding permits (Saich 1989). Further information about CAS institutes and research can be found in other chapters and in Appendix A.