R&D cru­cial to de­vel­op­ing new tech­nol­ogy

Global Times US Edition - - EDITORIAL - By Xu Hailin Page Ed­i­tor: li­[email protected]­al­times.com.cn

Chi­nese tech gi­ant Huawei plans to in­vest more than $300 mil­lion every year for re­search at uni­ver­si­ties, which sup­ports those in ba­sic sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy, as well as in­no­va­tion. “The amount [of funds] will only in­crease, not de­crease, from now on,” Xu Wen­wei, direc­tor of the com­pany’s board, said dur­ing an event at the 5th Asia-pa­cific Huawei In­no­va­tion Day on Tues­day. Amid sup­pres­sion from the US on the com­pany, all-round co­op­er­a­tion with the world is the com­pany’s strate­gic choice to break through the siege.

Fund­ing uni­ver­si­ties in re­search is a wise strate­gic move of Huawei, which al­lows the com­pany to be more closely linked to global devel­op­ment. One rea­son Huawei can be­come one of the world’s lead­ers in telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions is that it at­taches great im­por­tance to in­no­va­tion re­search.

The gi­ant tech com­pany es­tab­lished the Huawei In­no­va­tion Re­search Pro­gram (HIRP), for­merly known as the Huawei Col­lege Fund, in 1999, to im­prove co­op­er­a­tion with uni­ver­si­ties and in­sti­tu­tions. Ben­e­fit­ing from such co­op­er­a­tion, Huawei got op­por­tu­ni­ties to share in­sights into the in­dus­try with distin­guished re­search fel­lows and se­nior en­gi­neers, hold com­pre­hen­sive and in­depth dis­cus­sions to help trans­late tech­nol­ogy in­no­va­tion into tan­gi­ble re­sults.

Huawei said the HIRP has cov­ered over 300 uni­ver­si­ties from more than 20 coun­tries and funded more than 1,200 projects. Huawei has learned from oth­ers, com­pleted break­throughs and in­no­va­tions, and suc­cess­fully grown to a global com­mu­ni­ca­tions gi­ant.

Huawei is not the only party which ben­e­fits from the pro­gram. As co­op­er­a­tion is bidi­rec­tional and win-win, every side can get what it wants. Uni­ver­si­ties and in­sti­tu­tions have also gained much from the pro­gram.

US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s crack­down on Huawei has forced some uni­ver­si­ties such as MIT and Ox­ford Univer­sity to sus­pend ties with the Chi­nese com­pany. This will prob­a­bly neg­a­tively af­fect these in­sti­tu­tions’ in­no­va­tion re­search in rel­e­vant fields in the long term.

The era of glob­al­iza­tion de­ter­mines the trend of in­evitable glob­al­iza­tion in sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy as well as the flow of tech­no­log­i­cal con­cepts and tal­ent from around the world. In al­most every ad­vanced in­sti­tu­tion, there are fel­lows with dif­fer­ent cul­tural back­grounds.

This trend shows the US is bound to fail if it in­tends to sup­press Huawei by el­bow­ing it out of global re­search and devel­op­ment. By do­ing so, the US is ac­tu­ally set­ting it­self against the world’s tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vances. The US ban would have an im­pact on Huawei in the short run, but would ul­ti­mately harm US in­ter­ests.

Huawei’s story shows that re­search and devel­op­ment is cru­cial to de­vel­op­ing new tech­nol­ogy. As China takes the fast lane of tech­no­log­i­cal devel­op­ment, we would like to see more Chi­nese high-tech en­ter­prises fol­low the foot­steps of Huawei to cre­ate more tech­nol­ogy and tan­gi­ble re­sults, which will ben­e­fit not only China but also the whole world.

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