How transparency is a growth industry in China

Research from the University’s Dr Joy Zhang on how Chinese scientists are beginning to engage more with the public has been highlighted in the journal Nature.

A comment piece from Dr Zhang, of the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research, in the 25 May issue of Nature suggests that there is a ‘welcoming shift’ of attitudes towards scientific communications in China.

The comment piece, entitled Transparency is a growth industry is informed by Dr Zhang’s current research project,  which is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

China is currently the world’s second largest investor in scientific research and is increasingly seen as an advantageous destination for scientific powers, such as the UK, to forge sustained research collaborations.

Drawing on her research on Chinese scientific governance over the past 12 years, Dr Zhang describes in the Nature article how the Chinese scientific elites have begun to be more positive about public engagement.

She maps out key domestic and international factors that have prompted this change, but also cautions that a ‘coordinated structural and cultural change’ is still needed within Chinese institutions for China to establish public engagement that matches its scientific ambition.