Innovation competition marks 10th anniversary

Updated: 2015-06-19 23:43

By AMY HE in Pittsburgh(China Daily USA)

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Innovation competition marks 10th anniversary

Chinese Vice-Premier Liu Yandong gives remarks at the 10th Anniversary Commemoration of Chunhui Cup Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, held for overseas Chinese students studying in the US. The event was held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on Friday, as a series of events for the 6th China-US High-Level Consultation on People-to-People Exchange, which will officially begin in Washington on June 23. [Photo by AMY HE / CHINA DAILY]

Student entrepreneurs from China and the US gathered in Pittsburgh on Friday to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Chunhui Cup Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition, which is held annually to encourage students to come up with new ideas.

Sponsored jointly by China's Ministry of Education and Ministry of Science and Technology, the celebration is part of a series of events scheduled for the 6th China-US High-Level Consultation on People-to-People Exchange.

The Chunhui Cup encourages and guides Chinese students studying in the US to start innovation-based businesses back in China.

"In this age, one cannot deny the trend of innovation," said Vice-Premier Liu Yandong at the celebration. "The ability to innovate is how the world develops. Whether it's in China or in America, innovation and entrepreneurship is the domain of young people."

Liu commended Pittsburgh for being a city that encourages innovation and has used the creativity of its residents to transform the city's economy and help young people realize their dreams.

For years, America has attracted the best science and technology experts from around the world and from that emerged Intel, Apple, Amazon, helping America become the world's innovation hub, Liu said.

For China, ever since reform and opening up, the country has supplied "the world's primary productive force," she said, creating Alibaba, Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi, and others, bringing forth "a new model of enterprise and submitting the most patents in the world within three years."

For the Chunhui competition, students submit business plans on proposed projects, which are then evaluated by a panel of experts comprised of business incubator managers, venture capitalists and CEOs. Winners are sent on a trip to Guangzhou, where they collect their prizes and get a chance to pitch their projects to Chinese venture firms, science parks and manufacturing enterprises.

"By doing so, the competition provides them with the access to first-hand information on China's business environment as well as financial and industrial resources necessary for the successful creation of a technology oriented start-up company," the competition advertises.

Along with the commemoration of the Chunhui Cup, Friday's event included an inaugural ceremony for the 2015 China-US Young Maker Competition, an activity supporting the Sixth Round of China-US High-Level Consultation on People-to-People Exchange. Vice-Premier Liu and US Secretary of State John Kerry are the competition's co-chairs.

Brian Krzanich, CEO of Intel Corp, a co-organizer of the competition, said that Intel is excited to be part of the activities promoting innovation and collaboration between young Chinese and American makers.

"I believe that makers today are true adventurers. They are the creators and engineers of our flight to the future. The next big thing will likely come out of the youth," he said.

The Young Makers competition requires participants to create innovative products that focus on community development, education, environmental protection, health and fitness, energy, transportation and other areas of sustainable development.

"The competition will adequately embody the characteristics of Sino-US cultural and educational exchanges, promoting cultural construction of makers and exchanges among young people in China and US, creating creative communities and mass-creation space environment and ecology for Chinese young makers and facilitating deep communication between young makers in China and the US in the field of innovation, so as to enhance cultural exchanges and communication among young people from both countries," according to the competition's website.

Regional contests were held in cities across China and the US, where more than 1,000 makers participated. Forty-eight individuals or teams were selected for the final competition, which will take place in China in August. From there, 10 entrants will win awards.

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