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Scientists hail Xi's speech on innovation

By ZHANG ZHIHAO | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2021-05-31 07:05
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Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, Li Zhanshu, Wang Yang, Wang Huning, Zhao Leji and Han Zheng attend a meeting conflating the general assemblies of the members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering, and the national congress of the China Association for Science and Technology at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, on May 28, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

Xiao Wenjiao, a geologist and a CAS academician, said China needs to invest more in basic research and talent training, especially in less developed but strategically critical parts of the country, such as the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.

"Geographically speaking, Xinjiang plays a central role in the Belt and Road Initiative, but it is noticeably below the national average in terms of the numbers of talent, investment and resources in science and technology," he said.

Xiao said China needs a national initiative to support science and technology development in Xinjiang, enhance science popularization efforts in the region and cultivate world-class experts in China's northwestern regions.

Jiang Peng, chief engineer of China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope, applauded the improvement of the evaluation system that President Xi mentioned.

"Evaluation is a powerful driving force for science and technology innovation, so a reasonable evaluation mechanism is particularly important. The current mechanism is too complex, consumes too much energy and creates competition that discourages researchers' work," Jiang said.

"When the president said 'researchers should be spared from spending too much time on worthless socializing', the audience spontaneously burst into applause. The FAST is an achievement by four generations of scientists over more than 20 years. Our team will continue to work hard to produce more results."

Zhang Yangfei contributed to this story.

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