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January 22, 2020

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City striding toward innovation hub goal

Shanghai is well on its way to becoming a global innovation hub, as witnessed by its achievements over the past decade.

The city has made a great leap in science and technology breakthroughs — its annual innovation index reached a record high of 281.9 points in 2018, up 26.8 points, or 10.51 percent, from 2017.

The index has grown at double-digits for seven consecutive years, according to a report released by the Shanghai Institute for Science of Science yesterday.

The index uses a weighted formula based on a series of factors including the ability to gather innovation resources, influence of innovation results and appeal to innovation talent.

One key factors in the city’s innovation development is the increase in international recognition of local science and technology achievements. On global influence, Shanghai scored 93 points in 2011, 183 in 2015 and 345 in 2018.

Shanghai scored 261 points on influencing innovation in other parts of the country, up 60 points from 2017, showing deeper integrated development and more cross-city and cross-province cooperation.

In 2018, Shanghai scientists published 49,142 scientific papers on international platforms. Among them, 39 scientists found their papers were “highly cited,” nearly double that of 2017 and about one-tenth of the country’s total “highly-cited scientists,” the report said.

In 2018, Shanghai filed 2,500 Patent Cooperation Treaty applications, a year-on-year increase of 42.05 percent.

And the growth was more than four times the country’s average.

Shanghai also signed technology contracts worth 130 billion yuan (US$18.9 billion) in 2018, including export contracts worth 17.3 billion yuan to the Yangtze River Delta thanks to deeper integrated development.

By the end of 2018, Shanghai was home to 441 foreign-invested innovation centers. And 45 regional headquarters of multinational companies moved to Shanghai that year, bringing the total 670, the report said.

But Shanghai still needs to catch up with developed countries in investment for basic research.

In 2018, Shanghai invested 10.3 billion yuan in basic research, about 7.8 percent of total investment in scientific research.

In 2017 the percentages in the UK, the United States and South Korea were 18.1 percent, 17 percent and 14.5 percent respectively.

Also, Shanghai could do more to encourage companies to engage in research and development.

Of the world’s 2,500 top industrial research and development players, Shanghai has only 38 on the list. The city’s highest-ranking company is SAIC Motor Corp at 104.


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