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S&T for the public

Peking University, May 16, 2011: As the bridgehead and commanding height of China’s scientific and technological research, the research institutes and universities opened to the general public and promoted scientific spirit as well as innovative atmosphere, said PKU Provost Wang Enge.


Professor Wang made the remarks as the “Opening of Research Institutes and Universities to the Public” was inaugurated at PKU on May 14.


A comprehensive research university with a complete set of disciplines and competitive teaching staff, PKU always sees it a social obligation to promote science and serve for the public, said Professor Wang. “I look forward to seeing the public, especially the young inspired to love and understand science and technology, and getting to know more about the scientific development both at home and abroad.”


For the first time, the general public had access to several state key laboratories at PKU, including the State Key Laboratory of Protein Engineering and Plant Genetic Engineering, the State Key Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control, the State Key Laboratory of Machine Perception, and the State Key Laboratory of Advanced Optical Communication Systems and Networks. The Wang Xuan Memorial Gallery and the Geological Museum were also open to the public.



The opening ceremony


At an opened lab


Zhang Laiwu, vice minister of China’s Ministry of Science and Technology, said at the ceremony that the opening of research institutes and universities is a major measure to strengthen popular science construction and foster public understanding of science. The move contributed to constructing an innovative atmosphere within the whole society, promoting scientific literacy, and cultivating S&T talents.


Du Zhanyuan, vice minister of China’s Ministry of Education, also attached great importance to universities’ opening to the public and promoting science. “I hope that colleges and universities can pay greater attention to this task and set an example of providing research facilities to the society, actively contributing to the raise of public awareness and literacy of science.”


Teacher and student representatives from more than 20 key high schools in Beijing attended the event and visited the opened sites, along with over 300 researchers, graduate students, and pupils with their parents.


The event “Opening Research Institutes and Universities” covers scientific bases such as labs and engineering centers of the research institutes and universities, fundamental facilities such as all kinds of instruments centers and resource labs of natural sciences and technology, non-classified scientific instruments, experiments and observation sites, scientific museums, observatories, and botanical gardens. The purpose of the event is to welcome the public - especially the youngsters - to get close to the scientific instruments of these research bodies and have a face-to-face communication with researchers.


It is also part of the activities series for China's national science week 2011. Over 100,000 science events, road shows, and lectures will be held throughout the nation from May 14 to 20, Xinhua reported.


Featuring the theme "building an innovation-oriented country," the science week is expected to attract more than 100 million people, according to the Ministry of Science and Technology, one of the event's organizers.



Written by: Chen Long
Edited by: Jacques
PKU News (Chinese)