BEIJING, Aug. 31 -- Boasting 27 higher learning institutions, around 100 technological research institutes and more than 40 national and provincial-level laboratories, Changchun is already well-established as the scientific, technological and educational hub of northeast China.
In recent years, save for the success of city's nationally renowned automobile industry, most of the city's business sectors have failed to capitalize on the homegrown expertise of these academic and R&D resources.
An aerial view of the pioneering zone earmarked for Jilin's strategic hi-tech program.(Photo Source: China Daily)
In a bid to stem the brain drain, which has seen many of the its keenest minds and most inspired ideas snared by the bright lights of the likes of Beijing and Shanghai, Changchun's local authorities are now planning to establish the Changchun Northeast Innovation Center, with the expectation of converting the city's technological advantages into economic benefits.
The innovation center is also a part of the expansion program of the Changchun Hi-tech Development Zone.
According to the administration committee of the hi-tech zone, the planning and design of the center will be completed by the end of this year. This is a 12.5 sq km development to be constructed in three phases.
The first phase is scheduled to be operational by September 2011 and second and third phases will be operational by September 2013 and March 2015.
According to the committee, the major tasks facing the new center will be helping research institutes and higher learning institutes start up R&D and production facilities, facilitating technology transfer between research institutes and production enterprises, offering personnel training, promoting international cooperation and providing financial assistance.
An artist's impression of the completed site of the geographical research institute's environmental lab.(Photo Source: China Daily)
Due to Changchun's competitive advantages in the photoelectronics, biology and medicine and new materials fields, the innovation center will give priority to the development of these three sectors.
In the photoelectronics sector, the city has such nationally renowned research facilities as the Changchun Optical Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The city's research entities are leading the country in the fields of display technology, photoelectronics medical instrument, optoelectronic circuit, semiconductor laser equipment, optoelectronic monitoring equipment and spectrum instrument.
To date, there are more than 900 businesses engaged in the R&D and production of photoelectronics products within the confines of the city.
In the future, the innovation center will give more support to the development and production of such products as color LED, optical remote sensing equipment, laser equipment, optical communications equipment and opto-electronic circuits.
In the biology and medicine sector, the innovation center will make further use of the city's 80-odd medicine research institutes and 16 key laboratories to develop a modern biology and medicine industry. Changchun now has about 40 bio-pharmaceuticals businesses and the industry has maintained an annual growth of more than 30 percent over recent years.
In the years to come, the innovation center will give priority to the development and production of such products as vaccines, antibiotics, interferon and modern traditional Chinese medicines.
In the new materials industry, Changchun has considerable comparative strength into the research of high-polymer chemistry and physics, rare earth chemistry and electroanalytical chemistry.
The innovation center is expected to promote the application of such frontier sciences as the production of new polymer materials, nano materials, special construction materials and new medical materials.
In 2008, the output value of the new materials industry in Changchun reached 10.5 billion yuan, an increase of 29 percent on the previous year.
One of the area's key industrial sites: The Changchun Photoelectronic research center of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
(Photo Source: China Daily)