Meanwhile, China is seeking to boost its research originality by recruiting talented scientists from overseas. Through a government-sponsored project ambitiously titled the Thousand Talents Program, China has attracted more than 800 researchers and entrepreneurs since late 2008, offering them key positions at some of the nation’s top research universities. And in the next five to 10 years, the official plan is to land another 1,200. Prior to that, China had launched several similar programs on a smaller scale, including the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Hundred Talents Program, the Changjiang Scholars Program, and NSFC’s Distinguished Young Scholars program. Despite its impressive recruitment figures, the Thousand Talents Program has not gone without criticism—mostly directed at its lack of a clear standard in the hiring process. One of the program’s first returnees, Yigong Shi, was a tenured professor at Princeton University and had to give up a coveted Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator position before returning to Beijing full-time as the dean of Tsinghua University’s School of Life Sciences.
by Jessie Jiang |
December 13, 2010