OCED on Innovation in China
OCED Observer is running a good piece this month assessing the state of innovation in China:
Part of China’s innovation stodginess reflects history: the Chinese R&D system has evolved from a Soviet-style mission approach, slowing the transition to a more market-led approach. Geography is also a factor, with many pockets of excellence living separate lives–more an archipelago than an interlinked whole. A glance at the map also reveals that the hot spots of innovation lie along the east coast. In bleak contrast stands the number of R&D facilities in the western and central provinces. Again, history comes in to play, since many of these sites were chosen during the Cold War because their remoteness from busy economic hubs was considered as a “third frontier” in defending Chinese intelligence.
It goes to recommend that:
Those innovative “islands” have to be linked together for a start, and the gates of thousands of science and technology parks opened up through the promotion of networks for sharing human and capital resources. A greater national and regional concordance would avoid wasteful research duplication, such as by issuing guidelines or creating an independent co-ordinating agency. The authorities could inspire themselves from OECD-style “competence centres” for long-term co-ordination between public research organisations, businesses and universities.
Link: “Chinese innovation”