One young scientist came from India to use satellite imagery for the study of irrigated agricultural fields in his homeland. One came from Kenya to do research on water purification and sanitation technology. Another, from Thailand, learned about advanced climate modelling for rainfall prediction.
But the three have one thing in common: As scientists from the developing world, they were in Beijing for extended research at one of five centres of excellence organized by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS).
The young scientists, and the five CAS-TWAS Centres of Excellence, are the focus of a new film released by TWAS. The 10-minute film captures the centres' ambition to be a global centre of research, and the scientists' excitement to work with world-class faculty in sophisticated labs, with their work devoted some of the world's most important challenges.
"Science holds the promise of solutions, but many developing countries lack scientific and engineering resources," says Bai Chunli, the president of CAS and TWAS, to open the film. "TWAS and the Chinese Academy of Sciences are working together to change that... The Centres are serving as a powerful arm of TWAS in achieving its missions."
In mid-2013, CAS invested USD6.5 million in five existing centres of excellence in an effort to add staff and upgrade facilities, and to position them as hubs of high-impact research and training, especially for scientists from the developing world. Since then, hundreds of scientists have visited for programmes ranging to weeklong-workshops to extended training courses to four-year PhD studies, all with a focus on key challenges and areas of practical need. The five centres are:
？ The CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Green Technology (CEGT), based at the CAS Institute of Process Engineering; http://cegt.ipe.ac.cn/
？ The CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology (CoeBio), based at the CAS Institute of Microbiology; http://www.cas-twas-coebio.org/
？ The CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Climate and Environment Sciences (ICCES), hosted by the CAS Institute of Atmospheric Physics; http://www.castwas-icces.ac.cn/
？ The CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence on Space Science for Disaster Mitigation (SDIM), hosted at the CAS Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth; and http://www.castwas-sdim.org/
？ The CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Water and Environment (CEWE), based at the CAS Research Centre for Eco-Environmental Sciences. http://www.castwas-cewe.org/
The film was written and produced by Nicole Leghissa, a filmmaker from Trieste, Italy, where TWAS is headquartered. (Edward W. Lempinen from TWAS)
52 Sanlihe Rd., Xicheng District,
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