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Reorganizing Taiwan's R&D System to Promote an Innovation-Based Economy

  • Dr. Jung-Chiou Hwang

Taiwan is a world premier manufacturing center, with many products leading in world market share, such as IC foundry (72.8%), Mask ROM (81.8%), WLAN (91%), CD-R Disc (79%), DVD-R Disc (82%) and others. In recent years, it has also performed well in patent productivity and S&T infrastructure. Currently, the challenge for Taiwan is to enter a new stage for economic development - to transform from a manufacturing-based economy in an innovation-based economy. What is the current status and prospects of Taiwan's industry technology innovation system? How does it perform? What are the gaps? What lessons have been learned from Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs policies for public and private, university and industry networking?

As director general of the Department of Industrial Technology (DOIT) at the Ministry of Economic Affairs in Taiwan, Dr. Hwang is responsible for formulating industrial policy to upgrade technology levels in Taiwan. The DOIT works with research institutions, private companies and universities to implement Taiwan's annual Technology Development Program. Supported by a more than $5 billion annual budget, this program focuses on stimulating the development and transfer of knowledge-intensive technologies, upgrading R&D capabilities of research institutions, and promoting international scientific and technological cooperation across such key industries, as IT, biotech, materials, machinery, aerospace, communications and others. Since 1990, Dr. Hwang has led a distinguished career in government service in Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs. He received a PhD in Information Engineering and MS in Computer Engineering from National Chiao-Tung University and a BS in Electronics Engineering from Chung Yuan Christian University.