Impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Short-Chain Revolution is driving a reorganization and reshuffling of supply chains around the world. Taiwan's explosive ability to overcome this adversity has attracted international attention. The High Level Forum (HLF), an internationally renowned innovation network, held a banquet and awards ceremony on the evening of November 8 (UTC+1), at which ITRI was awarded the first Socio-Economic Development and Resilience Award in recognition of its excellence in using science and technology capacities to fight the pandemic. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Deputy Representative Bernard Liu of The Taipei Representative Office in France attended the event to accept the award on behalf of ITRI.
HLF held its three-day annual summit this year from November 7 to November 9 in Grenoble, with discussions among participants centering on the broad subject, "Innovation Ecosystems, key-players in reinventing industry to support a resilient society." Participants examined how to best forge resilience amid the global effort to combat the pandemic. Stephen Su, Vice President and General Director of ITRI's Industry, Science and Technology International Strategy Center participated as Taiwan's representative, and also delivered a keynote speech online sharing three of ITRI's major pandemic-prevention technologies: the iPMx Molecular Rapid Test System, HoMe Care Quarantine Service, and AI Thermal Body Temperature Detection Technology. All three have been used on the frontlines to guard against the spread of COVID-19. Mr. Su also stated that Taiwan desires to strengthen its links with parties around the globe to provide a resilient industrial eco-chain, using technology R&D to drive innovative applications. He said Taiwan is committed to ensuring environmental sustainability and forging co-prosperity with its global partners, which will also strengthen Taiwan's key position in the global value chain.
The HLF committee emphasized that even amid COVID-19, the Hsinchu Ecosystem led by ITRI, one of the 45 HLF listed innovation ecosystems, continues to apply state-of-the-art technology to enhance the safety of Taiwan. It ensures uninterrupted operation of industry and bolsters Taiwan's key position in the global value chain, thereby demonstrating how it uses its scientific and technology prowess to fight the spread of COVID-19. Therefore, ITRI was specifically cited for its Resilient Manufacturing Ecochain in being awarded the Socio-Economic Development and Resilience Award, which recognizes its contribution to Taiwan's economy, social welfare, and industrial resilience.
HLF was founded by the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) in 2012 in Grenoble, serving as an interactive platform to maintain and create global and regional ecosystems. Each year, the HLF Annual Summit invites opinion leaders from various countries to interact and discuss important global topics. Members include leaders in the field of innovation around the world, including Stephane Siebert, President of GIANT and CEO of CEA Tech; Eric Piolle, Mayor of Grenoble; Francesco Sette, Director General of European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF); Richard Dasher, Director of US-Asia Technology Management Center at Stanford University; and many other decision-makers from higher education, the business community, public welfare institutions, and political figures. These individuals are committed to managing or promoting innovation of regional ecosystems.
The Forum continues to invite cities and experts from all over the world to join. Presently, 45 cities from 32 countries participate, including France, the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, Germany, Korea, and Singapore. Taiwan was first represented in the organization in 2012 by National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University's (NYCU) Department of Photonics Honorary Professor Gou-Chung Chi. Dr. Chi integrated resources from industry, government, research and academic units to promote the Hsinchu Science City Ecosystem. These units, including the Hsinchu City Government, Hsinchu Science Park Bureau, ITRI, NYCU and National Applied Research laboratories all joined and participated in the first HLF Summit. In 2016, ITRI’s Executive Vice President Alex Y.M. Peng took up the role to continue Taiwan’s participation by establishing many technological collaborations with CEA. In 2017, Taiwan joined the HLF Steering Committee, introducing Taiwan's technology industry development and governance experience to the world. In 2018, ITRI Vice President and General Director Stephen Su began leading Taiwan’s participation at HLF. With new members like National Tsing Hua University (NTHU) and Taiwan Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers’ Association (TEEMA) joining the Hsinchu Ecosystem, Taiwan’s achievement was recognized by the HLF for the first edition of this award.