Honoring influencers

Updated: 2015-04-07 08:37

By Xu Fan(China Daily USA)

  Print Mail Large Medium  Small 分享按钮 0

A TV network has given awards to some Chinese who are inspiring people around the world in fields as diverse as sinology, science, dance and charity. Xu Fan reports.

A Hong Kong-based TV network has given awards to 11 people and groups who they claim are the most influential Chinese in the world.

The annual You Bring Charm to the World awards, organized by Phoenix TV and its website Ifeng.com, attempts to honor internationally influential Chinese. This year's awards ceremony was held at Tsinghua University on Friday.

This year, two men received lifetime achievement awards, the first time such an honor has been granted. The recipients were Hong Kong sinology master Jao Tsung-I and nuclear physicist Yu Min.

Jao, who will soon celebrate his 100th birthday, was a pioneer in many of his works. He is the first scholar to render the Babylonian epic Enuma Elish into Chinese and also the first person to make a comparative study of the oracle bone script and the Indus script.

"Professor Jao can speak six foreign languages and multiple dialects. He acts like a cultural bridge connecting China and the West, with most of his foreign students now being the top sinologists in the world," says Phoenix's top talk show host Dou Wentao, also the event's emcee.

Jao was born to a wealthy family in Guangdong province and grew up in a home that boasted more than 100,000 books. He addressed the event via video, saying, "the future success of sinology needs the effort of China and its people". His physical condition would not allow him to travel from Hong Kong to Beijing.

Yu, 89, known as the "father of China's hydrogen bomb", was also unable to attend the event because of health concerns. Yu's son collected the award on behalf of his father.

Chen Luyu, a popular TV host, presented Yu's award, describing the scientist as a committed pacifist who believes the world will ban nuclear weapons and eliminate all nuclear bombs in the future.

Other science winners included Chinese American HIV/AIDS researcher David Da-i Ho and meteorologist Wang Bin, famed for his creative innovation of a global system to predict climate change.

Ho is renowned for his leadership in developing a therapeutic cocktail of protease inhibitors for HIV carriers in the earliest stages of infection.

The Beijing medical aid team to Africa, a group that dispatched 43 teams to 11 African countries and regions, and Taiwan Buddhist nun Cheng Yen and her charity the Tzu Chi Foundation, won awards honoring their contribution to public affairs.

"We lost six colleagues in the fight against Ebola. The biggest challenge was to persuade Africans to understand the infected patients must be isolated," Beijing medical team representative Kong Qingyu says.

"The medical team stuck to their missions and jobs, and reflected China's image as a country that takes responsibility during major international incidents with a determined sprit," says Kong, former deputy director of Beijing Anzhen Hospital.

In the sports sector, China's national diving "dream team" and Taiwan "woodball's father" Weng Ming-hui, who invented the game of woodball, a Chinese version of golf, in the 1990s, both won awards. Woodball has gained popularity in Asian countries such as Japan and South Korea.

Chinese operatic soprano He Hui and Tan Yuanyuan, principal dancer with the San Francisco Ballet, were honored as China's major influences in the artistic sector.

After a 13-hour international flight, Tan says her first priority is to find a room for her daily practice.

"Ballet dancers have to practice every day and must be clear about the dos and don'ts. It is tough to become a ballet dancer, but it's worth it. I love to swirl on the stage," says Tan.

Qiu Jiayi, a graduate of The University of Nottingham from Ningbo, Zhejiang province, is one of the youngest winners. Qiu created a computer simulation to evaluate the potential of London's ground source heat pump system. The 24-year-old was the first non-British winner of the Royal Engineers Registration construction equipment Chairman's Award in the United Kingdom.

Some 100 individuals and organizations have been honored at the awards in the past eight years.

Contact the writer at xufan@chinadaily.com.cn

 Honoring influencers

Winners at the annual You Bring Charm to the World awards ceremony at Tsinghua University in Beijing on Friday.

 Honoring influencers

Members representing China's national diving 'dream team' receive an award in the sports sector. Zou Hong / China Daily

(China Daily USA 04/07/2015 page9)