Beijing and Shanghai are among the 10 most innovative cities in the world, based on published articles in leading academic journals, a survey released.

Beijing & Shanghai are among 10 most innovative cities

The report by the Shanghai Institute for Science of Science and Springer Nature publishing company surveyed 82 influential academic journals, including Nature, Science, and Cell, from 2012 to 2017, and calculated the contribution of different cities to global innovation according to the location of the authors’ research institutes.

It found that researchers in the 20 most innovative cities contributed more than one-fourth of all the papers, and called those cities “the sources of global innovation in science and technology”.

New York topped the survey, followed by Boston and Beijing. Shanghai ranked seventh. Other cities in the top 10 included San Francisco, Tokyo, Paris, Los Angeles, Seoul and London.

The most influential research institute was Harvard University, while Peking University and Tsinghua University in Beijing ranked seventh and 10th place respectively; Shanghai’s Fudan University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University were at 21st and 29th.

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In terms of major scientific achievements named by Nature and Science, San Francisco ranked first with 12, while Beijing and Shanghai respectively had three and two.

“The strength of academic research in the United States was enhanced by the close collaboration of these innovative cities,” said Wang Xueying, associate researcher at the Shanghai Institute for Science of Science.

“There are strong academic links between San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Boston, which form a network of innovation,” she said, adding that the cooperation between Beijing and Shanghai and other East Asian cities, such as Tokyo and Seoul, should be strengthened.

The report was published during the Pujiang Innovation Forum, a major annual event in Shanghai for exchanges on science and technology innovation by scientists, entrepreneurs and policymakers from around the world.

Mark Chandler, director of the San Francisco Mayor’s Office of International Trade and Commerce, suggested at the forum that to further improve Shanghai’s innovative ability, it needs to focus on finance and talent.

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“First, it needs more risk-taking and accessible financial institutes, so when someone has a great idea, there will be some support for him,” he said.

“Second is to attract people around the world. Shanghai has a lot of foreigners, but immigration could be made easier to help professors and businessmen move here.”

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