The National Centre for Technology on COVID-19 Prevention and Control has announced that electronic certificates for the virus vaccinations will now be issued at citizens’ requests. According to a press release, the agency said that the overall model of COVID-19 prevention technology systems includes proactive attack and defence and anti-epidemic systems.
Active defence systems include epidemic risk monitoring systems, feedback processing systems, quarantine monitoring systems, tracing systems, check-point monitoring systems, and testing systems. In particular, the epidemic risk monitoring system is based on the collection of medical declaration data, monitoring data at industrial parks, social networks, people’s compliance, and vaccination speed to assess the risk of COVID-19 in each locality.
To fight the pandemic, the country launched popular technologies like Bluezone, VHD, Ncovi, VHD, and QR code scanning, several new technology solutions will be launched soon. Bluezone witnessed an increase of 2.5 million installations since April when the fourth wave broke out. As of 24 May, there were 33.06 million Bluezone downloads. Of this, more than 20.58 million people have entered their mobile phone numbers on the app. As such, the number of people providing their phone numbers to state agencies had increased by one million.
An official from the National Centre for Technology for COVID-19 Prevention and Control said that apart from these solutions, the agency will unveil the immunisation management system and the electronic certificate of COVID-19 vaccine immunisation. Currently, the national immunisation management system has been put into operation and has a COVID-19 vaccination management component. Information about citizens who have been vaccinated will be managed on the system and included in electronic health records. In the coming time, people will be granted electronic certificates for COVID-19 vaccination at their request, according to an official.
The electronic certificate for COVID-19 vaccination is designed to comply with current popular standards so that it can be integrated with and accepted by other countries. The Ministry of Health’s recent report on measures to prevent and control the epidemic pointed out a number of technology applications that are being developed by the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) in coordination with related agencies. This includes specialised bracelets for managing people during quarantine and post-quarantine periods, vehicle monitoring platforms, and digital vaccine passports.
OpenGov Asia had reported earlier that the national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines, in coordination with the International Air Transport Association (IATA), launched the digital health application IATA Travel Pass. The IATA Travel Pass is a mobile app that allows travellers to store and manage certifications for COVID-19 tests or vaccines. The app is available in iOS and Android stores. The move makes Vietnam Airlines the first airline in Vietnam to sign an agreement with IATA to pilot this application, which is considered the key to open up the border, facilitating passengers’ travel between countries, and meeting all entry requirements of authorities and governments of countries. IATA is committed to supporting and closely coordinating with Vietnam Airlines throughout the trial period. The information provided through the IATA Travel Pass can be used by governments requiring testing or vaccination proof as a condition of international travel during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a secure means to manage health requirements and is much more efficient than paper processes.
The Centre for Eye and Vision Research (CEVR) and DEFTA Partners (DEFTA) announced a strategic collaboration aimed at advancing technology transfer and the commercialisation of advanced research in eye and vision health. This collaborative initiative, marked by a signing ceremony at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) campus, brings together the expertise of CEVR and the extensive business network of DEFTA, with the goal of fostering innovation and translating research outcomes into globally impactful products.
Under the leadership of the Chairman of the CEVR Board of Directors and Deputy President/Provost of PolyU, and the Director of Investment Research and Deputy Head of DEFTA, the collaboration is set to leverage DEFTA’s track record in identifying and nurturing technology-based startups.
The partnership envisions a seamless integration of DEFTA’s business network with CEVR’s research achievements to facilitate the commercialisation of university-originated research. Through strategic alliances with Japanese companies, facilitated by DEFTA, CEVR aims to propel the translation and commercialisation of groundbreaking research outcomes, contributing to the advancement of eye and vision health solutions on a global scale.
The Chairman of the CEVR Board of Directors expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration, highlighting the significant opportunities it presents for CEVR. He emphasised DEFTA’s crucial role in driving the commercialisation of research projects and enabling global expansion. The Chairman said he looks forward to a close working relationship with the DEFTA team to achieve shared goals, bringing innovation to fruition and enhancing eye health worldwide.
Meanwhile, the Director of Investment Research and Deputy Head of DEFTA underscored the synergy between The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and the University of Waterloo in Canada, along with the strong support from the Hong Kong SAR Government, as key factors contributing to CEVR’s research capabilities. She noted that DEFTA’s robust network with industrial corporates and extensive experience will secure more collaboration opportunities and resources for CEVR’s projects. The Director expressed confidence in DEFTA’s ability to foster innovation and create opportunities in the field of eye and vision research.
The signing ceremony, witnessed by PolyU’s President; the Consul-General of Japan in Hong Kong; and the Group Chairman and CEO at DEFTA Partners, symbolised the formalisation of the collaboration. This strategic partnership marks a milestone in the efforts to address urgent needs and challenges in global eye and vision health.
In embracing this collaboration, CEVR anticipates an expansion of its partner network, enabling the research centre to undertake more innovative and cutting-edge projects. The collaboration is poised to create a platform for CEVR to address critical issues in the field, ultimately contributing to advancements in global eye and vision health. As CEVR and DEFTA embark on this collaborative journey, the combined expertise and resources are expected to drive impactful changes in the landscape of eye and vision research.
The strategic collaboration between the Centre for Eye and Vision Research (CEVR) and DEFTA Partners marks a significant step forward in advancing the translation of cutting-edge research in eye and vision health into tangible, real-world solutions.
The formalised partnership, celebrated at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), brings together the academic prowess of CEVR and the business acumen of DEFTA, setting the stage for innovative advancements in the field. With a shared vision of promoting technology transfer and commercialisation, this collaboration holds the promise of not only addressing urgent global needs in eye health but also fostering a collaborative environment that can lead to groundbreaking developments.
As CEVR and DEFTA combine their strengths, we anticipate witnessing transformative changes that will positively impact eye and vision health on a global scale. This partnership exemplifies the power of collaboration between academia and industry, showcasing a commitment to driving positive change and improving lives through cutting-edge research and innovation.
To fulfil the collaboration agreement outlined in the joint statement between Vietnam and the United States from earlier this year to develop the semiconductor industry, Vietnam has been refining a one-stop-shop mechanism, formulating a human resources development plan, and setting up the National Innovation Centre (NIC) in the Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park in Hanoi.
The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), in collaboration with NIC and the US Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA), organised a roundtable in Hanoi to assess Vietnam’s infrastructure readiness for the semiconductor industry.
According to the Minister of Planning and Investment, Nguyen Chi Dung, Vietnam is prepared to engage in investment cooperation projects in the semiconductor industry with foreign companies, offering the most favourable terms for collaboration.
Participants were briefed on cooperation activities between the US and Vietnam to promote the semiconductor industry. Several member companies of the association have made significant investments in Vietnam. Many businesses have doubled their investment in the country, highlighting Vietnam’s escalating significance in the global semiconductor supply chain. The country possesses remarkable opportunities to make an impact on the global semiconductor supply chain.
Vietnam has set clear directions, goals, and actions, laying a solid foundation for the semiconductor industry. With a dynamic and innovative ecosystem driven by rapid advancements in the digital economy and robust growth in the high-tech sector, the country is gaining recognition. It has emerged as a burgeoning economic hub in Asia with a robust position in the global supply chain as it consistently attracts investments from multinational corporations.
The Deputy Minister of Education and Training, Nguyen Van Phuc, noted that Vietnam possesses abundant human resources, with one-third of students studying STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) methods—an increase of about 10% over the last three years.
Vietnam excels in training mathematics and chemistry, providing a solid foundation for the development of other industries, including semiconductors and information technology. The Deputy Minister expressed optimism about close cooperation and support from US firms in building training programmes and establishing laboratories at Vietnamese universities.
In September, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh participated in a meeting with chief executive officers of prominent United States enterprises in the semiconductor industry. During the meeting, he encouraged increased investment in Vietnam across all stages of the semiconductor industry, including infrastructure development, technology transfer, design, production, distribution, and manpower training.
The development of Vietnam’s semiconductor industry aligns with the prevailing global trend, leveraging the country’s potential and resources. Additionally, it offers tangible benefits for citizens, prompting active participation and contributions to the process, as highlighted by the Minister.
Three memoranda of understanding (MoUs) were signed by NIC under MPI with American partners, striving to enhance design capabilities, product development, and the training of human resources in the semiconductor industry.
The first MoU was with an electronic design automation company, geared towards providing support for the establishment of a chip design incubation centre. Under the second agreement, NIC will offer Vietnamese universities, training centres, and startups the necessary technology and training programmes to design and develop semiconductor products, aiming to stimulate the growth of Vietnam’s semiconductor and electronics sector.
Through the third MoU, NIC and an American university will work with Vietnamese research institutes and educational organisations to develop training programmes and share research in the domains of semiconductors and related fields. They will also seek and leverage appropriate sources of funding to enhance the capacity of the workforce in the semiconductor industry.
A Digital Roadmap for Economic Recovery is pivotal in the contemporary landscape, offering multifaceted benefits. It ensures technological resilience by equipping nations with advanced tools like artificial intelligence (AI) and IoT, fostering efficiency, reducing costs, and enhancing global competitiveness.
Experts and business executives believe that the digital economy’s revitalisation and the merging of digital and physical industries will be crucial factors in propelling China’s economic recovery. Hailed as the leading edge of industrial development, the digital economy is now a crucial component of China’s development plan.
Tech companies are being strongly advised to invest in cutting-edge technology, conduct fundamental research, and investigate strategically important but future-focused areas. The main goal is obvious: strengthen technical innovation capacities to bring in a new phase of development and modernise established sectors.
The need to foster new momentum and advance traditional sectors is at the top of China’s development agenda. This need highlights the significance of the Central Economic Work Conference, which is coming up soon. This important gathering usually establishes the priorities for economic development and sets the tone for macroeconomic policy for the coming year.
Wu Hequan, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Engineering, notes that “innovative digital technologies like 5G, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and the internet of things are weaving their magic across diverse industries, from manufacturing to agriculture, and hastening integration with the tangible economy.”
He highlights that fostering the digital economy is essential to gain a competitive edge, accelerate digital transformation, modernise established sectors, and efficiently support the tangible economy.
China’s digital economy soared to 50.2 trillion yuan (S$7.01 trillion) in 2022, securing its position as the world’s second-largest digital economy, constituting 41.5% of its GDP, as the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology reported.
China has outlined a strategic plan that includes concrete measures for building data resource systems and digital infrastructure. The State Council and the Central Committee of China jointly announced a plan that highlights the commitment to further integrating digital technology into the country’s politics, economy, society, culture, and ecology.
The head of the China Society of Industrial Economics, Jiang Xiaojuan, emphasised that traditional industries will be the primary arena for the emergence of the digital economy. She stressed how important it is to build a market system for data elements and discover hidden value in large data sets.
Further, platform enterprises are the pivotal figures in this digital transformation. Given China’s position as the world’s largest online consumer market and its extensive digital infrastructure, capitalising on these platforms has become critical for economic growth.
The National Data Administration pledges to share notable investment cases with other government agencies, bolstering support for these businesses to play a more dynamic role in propelling the digital economy.
This strategic approach generates employment opportunities in emerging fields, necessitates skill development, and encourages economic diversification by fostering the growth of digital industries alongside traditional sectors.
Additionally, the digital roadmap facilitates informed decision-making through a data-driven approach, enhances connectivity domestically and internationally, and promotes sustainable development practices. As consumer behaviours evolve, the strategy adapts businesses to changing preferences, making e-commerce and digital services essential components.
From a governance perspective, digitalisation streamlines processes, contributing to a business-friendly environment and fostering economic growth. In essence, this comprehensive approach not only addresses current challenges but positions nations to thrive in the evolving digital age.
In a resounding testament to the strides being made in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), Director Franz A de Leon, PhD, of the Department of Science and Technology-Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI) assumed a pivotal role at the AI Asia Expo – Philippines 2023 and Industrial Digital Transformation Congress. The event emerged as a collaborative platform, bringing together high-level officials, industry executives, and experts to deliberate on the responsible integration of AI across diverse sectors.
Dr Franz illuminated the immense potential for growth and innovation in AI within the Philippines. During this strategic gathering, discussions reverberated around crucial topics such as ethics, governance, and the transformative impact of AI on industries, all geared towards contributing to the nation’s economic development.
The Director’s emphasis on fostering an ecosystem valuing research, creativity, and ethical AI implementation underscored a commitment to positioning the Philippines not merely as a consumer but as an innovator within the broader Asian AI landscape.
Addressing the challenges of AI adoption, Dr Franz underscored the necessity of collaboration with partner organisations and stakeholders in government, academia, and industry. This collaborative spirit ensures that the breakthroughs in AI research seamlessly transition into practical applications, bridging the gap between theoretical exploration and tangible impact.
The commitment to democratising AI access took centre stage in Dr Franz’s discourse. Recognising the transformative power of AI for national development, he highlighted its potential to enhance public services, ensure equitable access, and improve citizens’ interactions with the government. By democratising access to AI, the DOST-ASTI aims to make cutting-edge technology accessible to all, fostering innovation and broadening AI’s positive impact across the country.
Further exemplifying its commitment to regional collaboration and innovation, DOST-ASTI partnered with the Philippine Statistics Authority Regional Statistical Services Office in MIMAROPA. At the 2nd MIMAROPA Data Festival, Elmer C Peramo, a technical expert from DOST-ASTI, delved into the fundamentals of Data Science and AI. He highlighted the potential of these technologies to propel the country’s technological landscape forward.
The iTANONG and ASTI-Automated Labeling Machine (ASTI-ALaM) projects, championed by DOST-ASTI, were spotlighted during the festival. These initiatives underscored the institute’s commitment to democratising advanced AI technologies, ensuring that the benefits of AI-driven progress are not confined to urban centres. Instead, regional communities are encouraged to leverage AI to address their unique challenges, fostering a more inclusive technological landscape.
The 2nd MIMAROPA Data Festival became a platform for DOST-ASTI to engage with statisticians, data experts, and stakeholders, gaining valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities unique to the region.
This commitment to regional empowerment aligns with DOST-ASTI’s vision of advancing cutting-edge AI technology nationwide, fostering local innovation, and shaping a future where AI acts as a catalyst for positive change and significant national development.
According to DOST-ASTI, AI innovation drives multifaceted advantages for national development. Streamlining processes, optimising resources, and fostering economic growth, AI creates new job opportunities, positioning nations as technological leaders. In governance, it enhances public services and facilitates informed decision-making through data analysis.
Societal impact is evident in improved healthcare, education, and public safety, promoting inclusivity. AI also contributes to environmental sustainability and necessitates capacity building for a skilled workforce.
Likewise, it enhances national security by bolstering surveillance and defence capabilities. Extending its reach regionally, AI bridges urban-rural gaps, fostering inclusive development and positioning nations on a trajectory of sustained progress and innovation.
The National Cybercrime Threat Analytics Unit (NCTAU), a vertical under the Indian Cybercrime Coordination Centre (I4C), identified and recommended action against over 100 websites engaged in organised investment or task-based part-time job frauds The I4C is a Ministry of Home Affairs initiative designed to address cybercrime in the country through a coordinated and comprehensive approach.
The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), exercising its authority under the Information Technology Act of 2000, has blocked these websites. These platforms, which posted task-based illegal investment-related economic crimes, were found to be operated by foreign entities. They used digital advertisements, chat messengers, and mule or rented accounts as part of their operations.
Additionally, it has come to light that the gains from these large-scale economic frauds were laundered out of India through various means, including card networks, cryptocurrency transactions, overseas ATM withdrawals, and international fintech companies.
In this regard, numerous complaints were lodged through the 1930 helpline and the National Cyber Reporting Portal (NCRP), highlighting the substantial threat these offences posed to citizens, along with concerns related to data security. Typically, these frauds entail the following steps:
- Targeted digital advertisements are launched on major search engines and social media sites using key phrases like “work-from-home” and “ways to make money from home” in multiple languages. These advertisements originate from overseas advertisers and predominantly target retired individuals, women, and unemployed youth seeking part-time employment.
- Upon clicking the advertisement, an agent initiates a conversation with the potential victim through a messaging service. The agent persuades the individual to perform various tasks, such as liking videos, subscribing to channels, rating maps, and similar online activities.
- After completing the assigned task, the victim is initially rewarded with a commission. Subsequently, the victim is urged to invest more capital with the promise of higher returns for additional tasks.
- Once the victim, having gained confidence deposits a larger sum, the deposits are subsequently frozen, resulting in the victim being deceived.
As a precautionary measure, the government has advised citizens to exercise due diligence before investing in any online schemes that promise exceptionally high commissions and are promoted over the Internet. Furthermore, when an unfamiliar individual contacts someone through an online messaging service, individuals should avoid carrying out financial transactions without proper verification.
The name of the receiver mentioned in the Unified Payments Interface application should be verified. If the recipient appears to be a random person, it could be indicative of a mule account, and the scheme may be fraudulent. Likewise, individuals should scrutinise the source from which the initial commission is received.
Citizens are strongly advised to abstain from conducting transactions with unfamiliar accounts, as they may be implicated in activities such as money laundering and potentially even terror financing. Engaging in such transactions could result in the blocking of accounts by law enforcement and other legal actions.
Establishing a ‘Cyber Safe India’ is one of the Ministry of Home Affairs’ top priorities. In a recent press release, it reiterated that it is dedicated to combating cybercrime and safeguarding individuals from cyber threats. Citizens are encouraged to promptly report the phone numbers and social media handles used by fraudsters to the National Cyber Reporting Portal (NCRP).
India is actively prioritising cybersecurity readiness and advocating for enhanced protection among citizens, government personnel, agencies, and organisations. The country is spearheading efforts to fortify digital defences, ensuring a resilient and secure cyber landscape across all sectors.
OpenGov Asia reported that the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology’s National e-Governance Division conducted a comprehensive CISO Deep-Dive Training Programme, part of the Cyber Surakshit Bharat initiative, to enhance cybersecurity awareness and empower government officials across India against escalating cyber threats.
Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin attended an event in Bangkok, focusing on the collaboration between a tech giant and the Thai government to advance the nation’s digital economy. The Premier highlighted the company’s technological prowess in AI and Cloud services, which aligns with the government’s commitment to inclusive digital development under the theme “Leave No Thai Behind.”
The Prime Minister also mentioned the government’s Cloud-First policy to foster a robust AI-based economy, integrating Public and Private Clouds with high data management standards. The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society has been tasked with spearheading these efforts through practical applications and improving public services through technologies such as Generative AI.
The Prime Minister conveyed his positive views on the enduring collaboration between Thailand and the tech giant, which cultivates a favourable setting for the growth of AI and Cloud technologies, aiming to guarantee that every Thai reaps the benefits of these digital evolutions.
The Prime Minister pointed out the government’s proactive digital-first policies and Thailand’s position as an attractive destination for global business investment. A notable outcome of this collaboration is the MoU announced at the APEC meeting in San Francisco, covering the expansion of digital infrastructure, responsible Cloud and AI use in government services, a Cloud-First Policy, and the enhancement of digital skills in Thailand.
With the signing of the MoU, the Thai government are poised to collaborate, charting the course for the nation’s digital transformation through comprehensive efforts focused on workforce empowerment, sustainability, and cutting-edge digital infrastructure. This agreement solidifies the vision of an AI-driven Thailand at the forefront of digital innovation.
The MoU seeks to bolster Thailand’s economic edge while fostering a digitally advanced ecosystem. Emphasising the creation of high-value jobs and sharpening the nation’s competitive edge, the partnership aims to position Thailand as a regional leader in digital prowess and sustainability.
Prime Minister Thavisin, while participating in the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in San Francisco, held discussions with the company, outlining the strategic objectives embedded within this collaborative venture.
The Prime Minister reiterated Thailand’s commitment to sustainable progress and renewable energy and aligned these ambitions with the company’s overarching vision, “This collaboration will strengthen our country’s economy while enhancing our digital capability.”
A wide spectrum of topics emerged during their discussions, including the blueprint for a digital-first Thailand, steering the nation towards an AI-empowered future, equipping Thai citizens for the evolving landscape of work and life, and propelling Thailand towards a leadership role in green growth initiatives.
Aligned with the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society’s digital government and cloud-first strategies, the company commits to close collaboration with Thai government bodies to propel smart digital infrastructure development across critical sectors like agriculture, healthcare, tourism, and education.
The collaboration seeks to pave the way for data centre investments to amplify cloud and AI utilisation in Thailand, while concurrently enhancing the nation’s cybersecurity posture with the company’s global best practices and expertise.
Furthermore, the partnership intends to integrate AI into government projects and public services, paving the path for establishing an AI Centre of Excellence to expedite ongoing public-sector AI initiatives, define comprehensive AI implementation plans, and foster innovation across multiple industries.
Policy and regulatory frameworks for responsible AI use in Thailand are also on the agenda, coupled with the company’s commitment to upskilling 10 million Thais, ensuring they are equipped with crucial skills for the future.
Noteworthy environmental initiatives are also part of the plan, with the creation of a sustainability sandbox aimed at expediting Thailand’s journey towards net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2065. This endeavour encompasses scalable initiatives catering to the public sector, large enterprises, and small businesses.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong officially unveiled the National AI Strategy 2.0 (NAIS 2.0) at the inaugural Singapore Conference on AI (SCAI). This comprehensive strategy is designed not only to address contemporary challenges but also to uplift the collective economic and social potential of Singapore over the next three to five years.
Singapore’s journey into AI began in 2019 with the inception of the first National AI Strategy. This initial strategy laid out plans to deepen the integration of AI into various sectors, from Education to Healthcare and Safety & Security. Notably, the nation invested in critical enablers to fortify its AI ecosystem. Since then, Singapore has witnessed remarkable breakthroughs, leading to new products, capabilities, and interactions.
The renewed NAIS 2.0 acknowledges the opportunities and risks that AI presents in a society where digital technologies are an integral part of everyday life. Mastery of AI, according to Deputy Prime Minister Wong, holds the key to empowering businesses and citizens, unlocking new job opportunities, and driving the next wave of economic growth.
However, the responsible and sustainable management of AI is imperative to mitigate potential negative effects or misuse, such as cyber threats and misinformation, ensuring that AI engagement is safe and trustworthy for everyone.
NAIS 2.0 is framed by the vision “AI for the Public Good, for Singapore and the World.” The strategy revolves around two key goals: Excellence and Empowerment. Under the banner of Excellence, Singapore aims to selectively develop AI peaks to advance the field and maximise value creation.
This involves directing AI towards addressing pressing global challenges, including population health and climate change. On the Empowerment front, the strategy aspires to equip individuals, businesses, and communities to use AI with confidence, discernment, and trust, making AI the great equaliser in preparing for an AI-enabled future.
The strategy outlines 15 key actions across various systems and enablers that Singapore will undertake over the next three to five years. These actions encompass building a trusted and responsible AI ecosystem, driving innovation and growth through AI, and ensuring that people and businesses can engage with AI effectively.
Simultaneously, the launch of the inaugural SCAI underscores Singapore’s commitment to navigating the challenges of AI development. Themed “For the Global Good,” the conference aims to convene over 40 distinguished experts from academia, industry, and government. The goal is to identify critical questions in the realm of AI that, once answered, will enable the responsible development and deployment of AI for the benefit of societies globally.
Singapore’s NAIS 2.0 and the SCAI mark a significant stride toward harnessing the potential of AI while acknowledging the responsibilities that come with it. With a vision focused on the public good and a commitment to excellence and empowerment, Singapore is poised to navigate the intricate landscape of AI, ensuring that this transformative technology contributes positively to society and the world at large.
A National AI Strategy is paramount for a country, offering a strategic vision that guides the integration and development of AI. This comprehensive approach is instrumental in fostering economic growth and competitiveness by attracting investments, promoting innovation, and creating job opportunities.
Positioned as a leader in AI research and development, a nation with a well-defined strategy elevates its technological standing globally. Beyond economic benefits, such strategies address specific societal challenges, such as healthcare and education, improving citizens’ overall quality of life.
Establishing a robust regulatory framework, fostering talent development, and promoting ethical AI principles are integral components of these strategies. They also facilitate international collaboration, ensuring the exchange of knowledge and joint efforts in addressing global challenges.