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Past California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogues

Past California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogues

Launched in 2015, the California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue is the preeminent bi-regional forum. Attracting leaders from industry, government, science and education sectors to the most dynamic innovation ecosystems in the world, the California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue explores growth opportunities in each region in light of their distinct and parallel challenges.


The 2018 California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue brought together scholars, policymakers, and industry professionals to consider how China's rising middle class, on the one hand, and shifts in the US labor market from stable to "gig" employment, on the other, intersect with emerging technologies to provide consumer-facing financial products and services, from insurance to consumer loans.

The two-day dialogue was held on Sept. 28-29, 2018 and was jointly organized by Fudan University and University of California San Diego. It takes place at the Beckman Center of the National Academies of Science & Engineering in Irvine, CA, welcoming government officials, academics, university leaders, business people, media and students. 

Organizers, Sponsors, and Partners included the Institute for Money, Technology & Financial Inclusion (IMTFI) at UC IrvineLong-US China Institute at UC Irvine and The Fudan-UC Center on Contemporary China.


Download full program (PDF)

The Second California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue gathers prominent Chinese and American business executives, policy experts, scientists and scholars to discuss the state of innovation in California and Shanghai. California, extending from the Bay Area to San Diego, is one of the world’s foremost innovation hubs. Shanghai, with the surrounding Yangtze River Delta, is making rapid progress in becoming an innovation powerhouse in China.

The two-day dialogue was jointly organized by Fudan University and University of California San Diego. It took place on Fudan University’s campus in Shanghai, welcoming government officials, academics, university leaders, business people, media and students.

While California and Shanghai diverge in their innovation models, these two regions share many key attributes, such as world-class universities, excellent infrastructure and vibrant entrepreneurial cultures. They also have many of the same industries that are driving the innovation, such as information technology, life sciences and financial sectors. In view of the commonalities and differences in the two regions, the second dialogue will focus on the following themes:

  • Innovation ecosystems in California and Shanghai, compared with each other and to other regions: Key topics included the dynamics and drivers of innovation in both regions, as the changing faces of innovation, institutional design, government-industry relations, regulations, financing and business models are key to scaling up from research and development to commercialization. Comparative analysis of the success and failures of regional innovation clusters also will be examined.
  • Close-up examination industries such as artificial intelligence and robotics, precision medicine, and financial technology: Three sessions will be devoted to a detailed discussion of innovative industries in both regions.
  • Financing and educating for innovation: Two panels detailed how talent is nurtured and sustained, as well as how banks, venture capitalists and investors are financing innovative firms and entrepreneurs.
  • Outlooks of economic growth in China and the U.S.: Attendees incorporated innovation into the big picture of economic growth.

The dialogue was cosponsored by Fudan University and UC San Diego.



Inaugural California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue

Feb. 5-6, 2015 | UC San Diego

Download full program (PDF)

For its inaugural forum, the California-Shanghai Innovation Dialogue gathered high-level business, political and academic leaders from California and Shanghai for influential conversations on topics crucial to the development of both regions. Participants will explore growth opportunities in light of each region’s innovation ecosystem alongside their distinct – and parallel – challenges.

California and Shanghai – including the surrounding Yangtze River Delta region – stand as leading regional innovation hubs. Each delivers strong value to their national economies. While the regions diverge in their models of innovation and stages of development, they offer crucial and complementary lessons. Importantly, California and Shanghai share concentrations of high-tech industries that face similar challenges, such as the optimal uptake of information technology and the rising demand for environmental innovation.

This year’s dialogue centered on three aspects of the California-Shanghai innovation relationship:

Innovation Ecosystems: Explore the innovation ecosystems of each region and in select industries. Specific areas include institutional design, regulations and identification of relationships and processes that are key to scaling up from R&D to commercialization.

Common Innovation Challenges and Solutions: Identify common innovation challenges facing California and Shanghai and understand current strategies for addressing core challenges. Establish bilateral relationships aimed at sharing information and using the experiences and best practices that each region has developed in pursuit of common solutions.

Lessons of Entrepreneurship: Companies and entrepreneurs from California and Shanghai share a wealth of experience in pursuing innovation. This conversation focused on lessons learned and how they may be applied across contexts. One goal was to identify how entrepreneurial networks can be developed through activities such as training programs and exchange visits.

The dialogue was cosponsored by Fudan University and UC San Diego. Closed to the public.