President stresses scientific pursuits
( 2003-10-17 02:16) (China Daily)
The developing countries need to improve their science and technology capacity to avoid being marginalized in the face of globalization, Chinese President Hu Jintao said yesterday.
Hu said it is vital to promote scientific co-operation between countries and increase public awareness of scientific endeavors.
"History shows that exchange between different civilizations is the key to sparking innovations and advancing science and technology,'' he said.
Hu made the remarks at the opening ceremony of the Meetings of the Third World Academy of Sciences (TWAS)in Beijing.
The meetings provide a forum of academic exchange for elite scientists from developing countries.
Founded in Trieste, Italy, in 1983 by a distinguished group of scientists from the developing world under the leadership of the late Nobel laureate Abdus Salam of Pakistan, TWAS has been pushing to promote scientific excellence in the developing world.
More than 500 TWAS members and guests from 77 countries and regions are attending the four-day event.
Hosted by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and several other Chinese scientific bodies, this year's meetings have become a forum for both retrospection and speculation as TWAS marks its 20th anniversary.
Hu spoke highly of the organization's role in promoting south-south scientific co-operation over the past two decades, adding that China is willing to do more to push scientific excellence in the developing world.
The TWAS meetings coincide with China's first successful manned space mission - and the first in the world for a developing nation.
Chinese scientists began to join TWAS shortly after it was founded and through it have carried out a wide range of scientific collaborations with counterparts from other developing countries.
Chinese scientists have also been the recipients of the largest TWAS research grants. Scores of local research institutes have been named TWAS Advanced Research Centres or are regarded as excellent scientific centres for the hosting of researchers from other developing countries.
In return, China has made donations to TWAS and helped train young people from other countries through various foundations, like CAS' South-South Co-operation Fund.
So far, China has funded more than 4,000 scientists from the developing world to do research or attend workshops in China, according to statistics from the CAS.
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