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Friday, January 27, 2023
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How China became a global leader in science, technology and innovation

Today Chinese Universities are among the top Fifty, Top Hundred, and Top five Hundred Universities of the world. The Educational standards have been upgraded immensely. Universities are given maximum liberties, flexibilities, and huge budgets, and are equipped with the latest labs and advanced instruments and equipment for R&D.

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Once upon a time, the US was a leader in Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI). It has used modern technology in industry, agriculture, Defense, and the Economy. The advancement in STI was fully exploited in almost all fields of life and the US became a global leader. Although, through policy incentives, they have attracted talent from all over the world and utilized fully in their developments. As a result, most American Universities were full of Indian professors and Chinese students. The local American youth was involved in a luxury lifestyle and became passive in development-related tasks.

Whereas, China, kept on working hard and learning from all over the world. In the Early day of reform launched in 1978 by visionary leader Deng Xiao Ping, millions of youth were sent to leading Universities of the world, especially in Europe, Japan and America. Special teams were dispatched to the developed world and learned about their experiences and tasked them to replicate them in China. The government kept on increasing funding for education, especially in S&T, R&D, and extended policy incentives. Hard work and policy incentives have transformed China into a high-quality R&D and advancement in S&T. Status of Scientists, Technologist was upgraded, liberal budget and conducive environment enabled China to make up for deficiencies. Definitely, a continuation of policies and political strong will was, vital during the last four decades.

Read more: China’s population shrinks for first time in over 60 years

Understanding the matter better

Today Chinese Universities are among the top Fifty, Top Hundred, and Top five Hundred Universities of the world. The Educational standards have been upgraded immensely. Universities were given maximum liberties, flexibilities, huge budget, and equipped with the latest labs and advanced instruments and equipment for R&D. Human resource for R&D was gradually produced and reached a stage where indigenous R&D became productive. Research publications is a major criterion for measuring the S&T status of a country, China has been publishing high-quality research Journal papers with high impact factor and high citation factors. Another parameter of S&T measuring S&T status is Patents, where China has surpassed the US.

Sanction forced China to work even harder and develop restricted technologies. Sanctions turned out to be a blessing for them and accelerated the development of indigenous technologies.

Today China has developed its indigenous technologies, and become a leader in several areas like 5G, Telecommunication, Laser, High-Speed Trains, Construction, Agriculture, Artificial Intelligence, IT, etc. China is fully utilizing its R&D output in Agriculture, Industry, Health, Defense, etc., and emerged as the second-largest economy.

Although the Western media is bashing China, criticizing its economy as a bubble, S&T Publication as low quality, and technology as reverse engineering, but, all of such propaganda has failed to misguide the rest of the world. China has got recognition globally and already surpassed the stage where it can be coerced or pressurized.

Fortunately, there is 32000 Pakistani youth studying in China currently. They are in almost all fields of modern S&T and at various levels, including Undergraduate, Post Graduate, Ph.D., and Post Doc, etc.

China is preparing a qualified Human Resource for Pakistan, capable to face the challenges of 21 Century. China is assisting Pakistan sincerely, and all advanced fields are open to Pakistan, without any restrictions. It is up to the policymakers in Pakistan, how to utilize China-graduates in national developments.

Read more: China warns West to stop creating ‘imaginary enemies’

In the early 2000s, Dr. Atta Ur Rahman established Higher Education Commission (HEC) and promoted STI. Research Infrastructure was established and Human Resource for Research was produced. Research Culture was promoted through various policies and incentives. As a result, Pakistan became a prestigious status of S&T globally. But, in the 2008 elections, he was removed from the HEC, the Budget for HEC was reduced drastically, and caused damage to STI. Since 2008, HEC was no longer productive or contributive toward STI and is rather politicized. Unfortunate!

It is time to take appropriate measures and rectify the policies if wanted to live with dignity in the international community.

 

 

Author: Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan, Founding Chair GSRRA, Sinologist (ex-Diplomat), Editor, Analyst, and Non-Resident Fellow of CCG (Center for China and Globalization). (E-mail: awanzamir@yahoo.com).     

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.