Pooling elite research forces in related fields both in and outside the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), the CAS Institutes of Science and Development (CASISD) is a research organization supporting the Academic Divisions of CAS (CASAD) to play its role as China’s highest advisory body in science and technology, and a comprehensive integration platform for CAS to build a high-level national S&T think tank.
During his visit to CAS in July 2013, Chinese President XI Jinping urged the Academy to take the lead in building a high-caliber national think tank in science and technology. In May 2015, CASISD was set up as an unincorporated organization affiliated to the CAS Institute of Policy and Management (IPM), with an objective to coordinate relevant resources to explore an efficient mechanism for the sustainable development of strategic studies. In November of the same year, after being identified as one of the first 10 pilot organizations to build China’s first-class think tanks directly under the central authorities, CAS clarified that priority will be given to the establishment of CASISD. One month later, CAS decided to set up CASISD with a legal person status on the basis of former IPM. January of 2016 witnessed the establishment of CASISD, which was further consolidated by bringing in outstanding teams of strategy and consultation research from other CAS institutions, such as the National Science Library and the CAS Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research. In October 2016, the establishment of CASISD won the approval of the State Commission Office of Public Sectors Reform.
The predecessor of CASISD, IPM, was a think tank-oriented center noted both for academic research and policy consultation. It was founded in 1985 by consolidation of three former CAS subordinates: Office of Policy Research, Division of Management Science and Editorial Department of Journal of Dialectics of Nature. In 1987, the Section of Optimization and Overall Planning under the CAS Institute of Applied Mathematics was incorporated into the Institute. Thanks to its efforts over more than 30 years, IPM made significant progress in academic research into four disciplines：policy studies, public management, management science and engineering, and techno-economics and management. Focusing on the academic disciplines, IPM coordinated strategy, policy and management studies to comprehensively address topics like S&T advancement, innovation development and sustainable progress, with the full-fledged growth of its research teams. IPM received six national S&T awards and more than 30 prizes at the ministerial and provincial levels, providing important support for macroscopic decision-making in areas such as national S&T system reform, development of high-tech parks, innovation capacity building, development of emerging industries, and policies to encourage innovation activities in firms. As a result, a high-level global network for academic cooperation and exchanges was formed.
The newly established CASISD has five research institutes (specializing in S&T development strategy, innovation development policy, sustainable development strategy, systems analysis and management, and S&T strategy information, separately), four research centers to support CASAD with their studies (in consultation, academic disciplinary development, scientific norms and ethics, and science publicity and education, separately), and a center of the third-party evaluation to undertake assessment projects from the CAS headquarters and CASAD. Furthermore, CASISD is home to five Academy-level research centers, namely, the CAS Center for Strategic Studies, the CAS Center for Innovation and Development, the CAS Center for Interdisciplinary Studies of Social and Natural Sciences, the CAS Center for Management Innovation and Evaluation Research, and the CAS Center for Intellectual Property Rights Research and Training.
At present, CASISD has a staff of 194 and 51 post-doctoral scholars. Of its 161 researchers, 39 are research professors and 65 associate research professors.
As the host of the School of Public Policy and Management, the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, CASISD has master’s, doctoral and postdoc programs in management science and engineering, master’s programs in “business management,” “economics of population, resources and environment ” and “S&T philosophy”. Among its current 166 graduate students, 63 are studying for their master’s degrees and 103 for their doctoral degrees.
CASISD boasts an extensive network of academic cooperation and exchanges. It has MOU with more than 20 research institutions and universities in different countries, including Japan, Republic of Korea, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Germany, the UK, the US and India. Some national learned bodies are affiliated to CASISD, such as the Chinese Association for Science of Science and S&T Policy Research, the Chinese Society of Optimization, Over-all Planning and Economic Mathematics, the China Association for Development Strategy, and the Chinese High-tech Industries Promotion Society. It also houses editorial offices for a number of academic journals, including Journal of Science Research Management, Chinese Journal of Management Science, Journal of Studies of Science of Sciences. It joins hands with CASAD in running Sciences and Society, as well as Bulletin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, a key media for national S&T think thanks.
Looking Into the future, CASISD will commit itself to the analysis of S&T development trends and breakthrough directions in line with the law of S&T development, and the examination of major issues concerning socioeconomic progress and national safety by giving full play to CAS advantages of integrating a comprehensive research and development network, a merit-based academic society and a system of higher education. Focusing on areas such as S&T development strategy, S&T and innovation development policy, ecological civilization and sustainable development, foresight analysis, and strategic information, CASISD will provide science-based reference for national macroscopic decision-making and strive to build itself into a global leader in science, technology and innovation development policy thinking by bringing together outstanding talent and establishing an international network for strategy and policy research featuring opening up and cooperation.