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A Feast of Scientific Knowledge and Popular Science

2019/09/25

Since 2018, the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) has been promoting the "Young Scholar Fellowship," in the hope of tackling the talent deficit of higher education and scientific research talents in Taiwan. “Young Scholar Fellowship” includes the Einstein Program and the Columbus Program, both of which offer young scholars abundant resources to encourage them to make significant breakthroughs. The program has shown desirable results in recruiting international talents and retaining domestic faculty. From 2018 to 2019, the “Young Scholar Fellowship” has subsidized a total of 168 young scholars, attracted 24 scholars overseas to teach in Taiwan and assisted 18 local scholars in their employment at Taiwan universities.

On August 13th, the office of the "Young Scholar Fellowship Program" under Science and Technology Policy Research and Information Center (STPI) of National Applied Research Laboratories (NARLabs) held the "2019 Taiwan Young Scholar Fellowship International Forum" at Shangri-la's Far Eastern Plaza Hotel in Tainan. The forum lasted for three days, aiming at enhancing the connection and exchanges between fellowship winners and the international academic community. The fellowship winners presented their research findings to the attendees. Outstanding scholars, junior and senior, from home and abroad, were also provided with an opportunity for dialogues and international academic exchanges.

The forum’s prospect is to foster academic exchanges among all the attendees, including 14 outstanding scholars and journal editors from abroad, fellowship winners, review committee members, academic and business mentors, and representatives of the domestic media industry. On top of that, the MOST has been promoting the "Shackleton Program Grant" since 2019. The program encourages prominent scholars to conduct cross-disciplinary research, maximize team synergy, and achieve breakthroughs. The newly-approved grant winners were also invited to the forum, which further demonstrates MOST's aspiration to promote experience-sharing and stimulate academic exchanges among scholars across programs and generations.

Minister Chen Liang-Gee mentioned the achievements of the “Young Scholar Fellowship” in his speech, noting that a number of the previous fellowship winners have emerged as fast-rising researchers in academia. A lot of them have made substantial research findings and were awarded plenty of academic honors. Minister Chen also expressed his expectations for the fellowship winners, and that is to explore innovative topics and strive for excellence in different fields. Regardless of theoretical or applied research, the attempts to dream big and pursue innovations will drive the society forward.

Associate Professor, Dr. Chang Tay-Rong, the winner of the Columbus Program, shared his cross-disciplinary research involving the study of physics, mathematics and material science.

 

The fellowship winners, twenty in total, also shared their research results at the “Young Scholar Fellowship International Forum.” These young scholars study a wide range of topics, including artificial intelligence and earthquake prediction, material development, reflection on philosophy and ethics, evolutionary genes and food security, optical imaging, and cancer diagnosis. The researchers utilized their innovative thinking to bridge between different disciplines, and the results undoubtedly strengthened scientific communication with society, which is of considerable significance to the future of all human beings.

In addition, the office of the "Young Scholar Fellowship Program" provided young scholars an opportunity to exchange ideas with senior scholars overseas, as well as senior editors of Spring Nature and Elsevier journals. The goal is to broaden the horizons of the fellowship winners and further facilitate international exchanges and collaborations.