Day 11 in Shanghai

The last day of this trip in Shanghai is coming to an end. We had a very good meeting this morning at STJU – Shanghai Jiao Tong university, where we met colleagues from the Synthetic Biology lab and learnt a great deal about their ambitions to build a leading center in the Shanghai region. The meeting followed with a lunch meeting with colleagues from Shanghai University and the Shanghai International College of Intellectual Property. After some final gift-shopping session we spend the afternoon at the hotel wrapping up our interviews. Following another superb dinner with fantastic Shanghainese food, we continued with our work. Overall we meet more than 30 people from various stakeholders of the innovation system including academics, entrepreneurs, startup accelerators, leading venture funds and government officials. What a successful trip to China. When leaving for China a little less than two weeks ago, I would not have dared to dream of such an excellen and fantastically insightful trip.

Day 10 in Shanghai

The field work trip to China is soon coming to an end. After three more meetings today there are only a few more scheduled for tomorrow before I have to get on the plane to Germany. The first meeting today was with a government official, who kindly hosted us and gave us the chance to discuss IP and innovation system issues. Following a short break we then headed to a meeting kindly hosted by the State International Intellectual Property Operation Management platform. In the late afternoon I then met with Ni Ming, another Wolfson alumni for dinner.

Day 7 – Shenzhen and Shanghai

Time for another good night blog post. This time from Shanghai. We had another really good day. Still in Shenzhen we first visited Harbin Institute of Technology, where we were welcomed by a delegation from the unviersity and also met Simin, one of our Wolfson alumni. Following that visit we had another excellent cantonese lunch with Bingjin, who then took us to see HAX, where we then met Jason, who showed us around. Really an impressive space where entrepreneurs can get introduced to the Chinese hardware manufacturing ecosystem. We then had to rush to get to the Chinese Academy of Science at the Shenzhen Institute for Adcanced Technologies (SIAT), where I had been asked to give a talk. Following that we had the opportunity to get a tour around the Institute for Synthetic Biology and some excellent discussions on the role of IP for synbio startups. This meeting marked the end of our field trip to Shenzhen and we rushed to the airport. Aocheng successfully managed to reschedule our flight as there was a risk that our original flight might be cancelled (which turned out to be true). We made it however on an ealier flight to Shanghai, where I could check in to my hotel room with a fantastic view from the 81st floor. I now look forward to get some sleep and then learn more about Shanghai tomorrow. Good night!

Day 6 in Shenzhen

Another highly interesting day comes to an end. As on previous days we had a packed programme. We first met with a deputy director and the head of IP from a very interesting biopharma company. We then headed towards the financial district where we met with three of the leading Chinese VC companies with offices on top of the city with fantastic views. We had really insightful discussions about the use of IP by chinese companies. We also met with former CTM PhD student Bingqing Zhao, who is now working in a very interesting postdoc programme between Tsinghua University and the company she is working for. The day ended with a typical cantonese dinner and another delicious Hey Tea as desert.


Day 4 in Beijing

This has been a particular exciting day in Beijing and sadly our last one before we had to Shenzhen early tomorrow. Following my keynote talk on „Technology Foresight in the Age of AI“ and the best paper prize ceremony we headed towards Tschighua University. At the X-Labs we met with Prof Pearl, the current director, who gave us some excellent insights into the X-Labs with some very insightful details about how the importance of IP for X-Lab startups has been growing over the past years. A very exciting place with some fantastic companies that have grown out of it, with an extremely delicious coffee from „Yee Coffee“, one of the X-Labs spinouts.

Following that meeting with met with Prof Rong from Tsinghua’s School of Social Sciences and some of his colleagues, before we had to go to Kangxin Partner for a meeting. It was very interesting to hear how the company moves forward with own investments in new technologies for providing more advanced IP services. This meeting was then followed by a visit to Peking University, where we met Prof Justin Yigu Lin, former Chief Economist and Vice President of the Wold Bank. Having the chance to discuss with him the role of IP for different types of technologies in countries that have to catch up was extremely interesting. Also, I have to say that the campus is very impressive and beautiful. The day then came to a nearly close with a fantastic dinner with Prof Yuan Zhou („Joseph“) and his team from Tsinghua’s School of Public Policy and Mangement at the 1911 restaurant, where we had some interesting deserts including white rabbits and yellow pigs. Then it was finally time to head home and pay tribute to Aocheng, who had turned 25 today with a very special cake from Blackswan bakery. What a day!