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MOST's Director-General and STPI on Leading Delegation to Europe

2019/09/24

The Sixth Czech-Taiwan Technology Days had rounded off at the Technology Agency of the Czech Republic (TA ČR) in Prague, the capital city of the country. The event was joined by Huang Hsin-ya, the director-general of the Department of International Cooperation and Science Education in the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST). Leading along with Huang was a delegation of experts from National Applied Research Laboratories (NARLabs), the Artificial Intelligence for Intelligent Manufacturing Systems Research Center (AIMS) of National Tsing Hua University, and other institutions. The two parties had reached several agreements during the event.

Czech-Taiwan Technology Days are a paramount opportunity for bilateral exchanges between Taiwan and the Czech Republic. MOST and TA ČR have been alternating between hosting the event since its launch in 2007. Both sides have maintained constructive mutual visits and exchanges as well as realizing numerous collaborative projects. Over the years, the event centered on diversifying themes, such as cybersecurity, Industry 4.0, smart city, and green energy.

This year, both sides had agreed on several joint programs, which included signing the 2020-2021 Project-Based Personnel Exchange Program (PPP) Protocol with the Czech Academy of Science. This agreement aims to facilitate Taiwan-Czech mutual visits for the next biennium. Furthermore, AIMS (directed by MOST) also signed an agreement with the Czech Institute of Informatics, Robotics, and Cybernetics of the Czech Technical University in Prague at the beginning of this year to officially kick-off their collaboration.

In addition to initiating Taiwan-Czech joint programs, another important mission of the Europe-visiting delegation was to promote Taiwan CAR Lab to the world. It is a test facility for autonomous vehicles established by MOST in 2019. Taiwan delegation also took the opportunity to learn from the other countries’ experiences of operating autonomous-vehicle test facilities and their latest academic research development. The wisdom gained can serve as a reference for future formulation of relevant policies in Taiwan. For instance, Hungary is a giant car-exporting country in Central Europe and the destination where world-renowned car manufacturers plan to set up their electric vehicle production lines, including Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. As a result, Hungary has evolved into Europe’s development hub of autonomous vehicles and self-driving technologies as well as the sector’s talent incubator in recent years. Therefore, through the visit, Taiwan delegation also pushed forward collaborations with Hungary in the areas of autonomous-vehicle test facilities. In particular, Taiwan CAR Lab and Hungary’s ZalaZONE test track for autonomous vehicles will begin sharing information on a virtual platform as the first step towards establishing bilateral cooperation.

Taiwan delegation and the authorities of Hungary’s ZalaZONE test track for autonomous vehicles on site.

 
Moreover, Taiwan delegation also obtained an agreement on future mutual exchanges from the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) Center for Innovation Systems & Policy, particularly on mutual visits for policy formulation and research. In essence, Taiwan delegation had joined multiple overseas institutes in exploring their research achievements throughout the trip, thereby expanding ties with global experts and securing more international exchange and cooperation opportunities. The network established is expected to boost Taiwan’s research momentum in relevant fields.

Head of AIT Center for Innovation Systems & Policy, Dr. Matthias Weber (center) and Deputy Director-General of MOST's Department of Foresight and Innovation Policies, Chen Shou-Ling (right)