The rapid rise of “the cosmos club” has paralleled China's rising aspiration to take on a prominent role in the international “space club”. Li Cheng, director of the John L. Thornton China Center of the Brookings Institution, takes a closer look at the career paths and institutional associations of emerging rocket scientists in China’s national and provincial leadership.
Academic Ding Ke believes that the Chinese government is making efforts in using innovation to drive further development of the country and avoid the middle-income trap. But this would prove difficult amid heightened China-US tensions and the trend of economic decoupling.
Hainan is set to become China’s first free trade port and has great potential to beef up its financial offerings. Academics Pei Sai Fan and Chen Jingwei present a number of suggestions that could boost the Chinese province’s standing as an international hub for financial and regulatory innovations, green financing and connectivity.
While China has accelerated its push to build the infrastructure and to promote 5G among telcos and subscribers, it still faces a shortage of exciting new 5G applications that will draw in a constant stream of consumers or find wider industrial use. Amid a hostile external environment, it also faces some challenges in rolling out 5G and other advanced digital technologies through the Digital Silk Road. Nonetheless, it plans to go full steam ahead.
Technology expert Yin Ruizhi notes that one sector in which technology is lacking is traditional agriculture. Due to the scattered nature of the sector, it is difficult to implement technological solutions to production and sales. However, tech company Pinduoduo holds the power to integrate the market and reach buyers and sellers across the country.
Domestic and external pressures compel China to face the issue of democracy. With growing affluence and diversity in the population, the government needs to find a way to incorporate various views that goes beyond the Mao-era “mass line”. In forging a new path, the Chinese Communist Party is feeling its way around bringing about a socialist neo-democracy, or what has been verbalised as “whole-process people’s democracy”. But what stands in the way of putting thought into action?
EAI academic Qian Jiwei notes that as China’s space capabilities increase, the field is being opened up to private companies. This move is likely to spark off greater innovation and efficiency for the industry and give China a leg up in the space race, but challenges exist in offering targeted policies and managing innovative outputs.
With the ongoing pandemic and last year's crackdowns on internet giants, some young people are switching tracks and moving from the private sector — especially the internet sector — to the public sector, which is still thought of as a stable career. Will this lead to a loss of talent for the internet sector? Zaobao journalist Liu Liu speaks to young people and academics for their views.
China must guard against pursuing too much financial development too fast, says NUS academic Pei Sai Fan. Only when a fine and delicate balance is struck between financial development and financial supervision — taking both financial innovation and financial stability into account — can the innovative development of the financial sector project its positive energy and dutifully serve the real economy. In that endeavour, it will be important for regulatory authorities to recruit and retain professional talents who embrace innovation, know much about fintech and are au fait with ways of growing the emerging digital financial sector as well as the market and financial risks.