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July 15, 2019

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Making science popular in Xuhui

A SERIES of lectures and events are underway in downtown Xuhui District to popularize science and technology.

One of the lectures was held at the historic Catholic Major Seminary at 60 Nandan Road over the weekend.

The seminary has been renovated into an exhibition hall showcasing the history of Xuhui.

Lecturers included Ji Xiaohua, founder of the science popularization website; Peng Yan, director of the Research Institute of Unmanned Surface Vessel Engineering; and Xu Li, chief executive officer of the artificial intelligence firm SenseTime.

The science and industrial leaders shared their latest research with an audience of more than 150 people, mainly local children and their parents who applied on the Internet to attend the free lecture.

A priority of is to refute various online rumors for Chinese netizens, especially the elderly, said Ji.

As one of China’s most popular science websites, it has refuted over 100 widely spread scientific and health rumors on the Internet, he said.

According to statistics of the China Association for Science and Technology, scientific literacy in China is only 8.47 percent, Ji said. 

Xuhui District has initiated a “science popularization market” to invite scientific firms and experts like Ji to hold various exhibitions and activities for the public.

Five such events have been arranged in downtown parks and squares since the program was initiated in May 2015.

Over 70 high-tech companies and research institutes have participated.

During a recent event in May, local startup firms displayed advanced garbage treatment machines that can turn kitchen garbage into fertilizer, along with robots and virtual reality fitness equipment.

There are over 120 national and city-level scientific research institutes in Xuhui including the Chinese Academy of Sciences Shanghai Branch and Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences. A large number of AI firms are based at the West Bund waterfront along the Huangpu River.

The 23 science popularization sites in Xuhui will work with downtown cultural venues, museums and libraries to host more public activities to better promote science and technology, according to the Xuhui Association for Science and Technology.


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