On the morning of June 16, the Awards Ceremony of the FourC Challenge 24-hour Design Contest was held amidst great fanfare at the 9th China (Shanghai) International Technology Fair (CSITF)’s 2023 United Nations Industrial Development Organization Day (UNIDO Day 2023) proceedings, boasting a theme of “Innovative Design Empowers Sustainable Development.”
The event was co-hosted by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and Shanghai Jiao Tong University. It was co-organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization Shanghai Investment and Technology Promotion Office (UNIDO Shanghai ITPO), by the Shanghai Jiao Tong School of Design, and by the Shanghai Foreign Investment Association.
Fatou Haidara, Deputy Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, and Chen Deming, Chairman of the China Association of Foreign Investment and former Minister of the Ministry of Commerce delivered congratulatory remarks via recorded video. Zhou Lan, deputy director of the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce, Xi Lifeng, Vice president of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and Zhang Yi, deputy director of the China International Economic and Technological Exchange Center, attended the event and delivered addresses.
On behalf of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Xi Lifeng extended his warm congratulations to the event. He mentioned that against the backdrop of Shanghai’s ascension as a world-class city of design, Shanghai Jiao Tong is rooting itself amidst the locationally advantageous integrated Yangtze River Delta region. Thus, the university is seizing the opportunities of the time and situating itself on the present frontier of advancement by interweaving the University’s talent and penchant for innovation together with ongoing developments at the regional and national levels. At the same time, Shanghai Jiao Tong is also looking forward to further strengthening cooperation with large enterprises and organizations with advanced technology and innovative resources.
CSITF is an international professional exhibition specialized on the technology trade. As an important international organizational partner of the exhibition, UNIDO held the UNIDO DAY event at CSITF eight consecutive times, building an important international communication platform for global technological innovation, investment and cross-border cooperation. The theme of UNIDO DAY this year focuses on design innovation. With the theme of “ReNewal”, this year’s FourC Challenge 24-hour design contest brought together more than 200 students from top universities around the world to break through technical and disciplinary barriers, promoting an inclusive process for human well-being. Altogether the theme can be seen an effective interpretation of the UNIDO DAY’s core message.
Real Applications and Design Practices
Technology proceeds higher and farther when riding the wings of design. In accordance with this spirit, Softbank China, BOE Group and the School of Design Shanghai Jiao Tong University jointly signed a letter of intent for cooperation among FourC enterprises, opening a prelude for market application and capital investment into design innovation.
An Exhibition of Innovative Design and Its Technological Transformations
In this year’s FourC Challenge, through 24 hours of consecutive work, 12 top groups were selected as finalists, and nearly 40 students were invited to receive awards. In addition, outstanding work from the School of Design of Shanghai Jiao Tong University is to be displayed at the UNIDO Exhibition of CSITF under the theme of community health, intelligent transportation, and green building.
Focusing on topics such as design innovation and sustainable industrial development, reflections and remarks were shared by; Shao Jing Feng, chief designer of the SAIC Innovation Research and Development Institute; LEE Kunpyo, Dean of the School of Design of Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Ruan Xing, Dean of the School of Design of Shanghai Jiao Tong University; Ren He, deputy director of the Science and Technology Committee of COMAC; Hou Zhi, General Manager of BOE; and Dai Pengfei, Director of Rockwell Automation Intelligent Manufacturing Innovation Research Institute.
Shao Jingfeng discussed sustainable thinking in the design of new energy vehicles according to three respects: commercial sustainability, environmental sustainability and market sustainability. He said that the essence of the sustainable development of the automobile industry is a sense of social responsibility and the natural value of state-owned enterprises. LEE Kunpyo offered the Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s talent training and design practice as an example for discussing how design education can empower sustainable design and future development. Ruan Xing expounded his views on “design thinking” starting from the original meaning of design, the initiative of design, its perception and consciousness, and philosophy. Hou Zhi shared the innovative technology and practical application example of smart windows, and expressed the hope that technology and design will continue to deepen their mutual integration and promotion, and lead to more development possibilities, thus promoting the sustainable development of the industry. Dai Pengfei discussed a review of the innovation-driven net-zero supply chain and related insights based on the status quo and developmental trends in the global supply chain, new rules for “green trade,” and other aspects.
At the end of the meeting, Zhao Xiaolei, director of UNIDO Shanghai ITPO delivered a concluding speech on the theme of innovative design empowering sustainable development. In conclusion, UNIDO Day and the FourC Challenge can be seen as immaculate interpretations of the theme of this year’s CSITF—"Opening and Linking the World, empowering the future with Technology." Innovation is the source of sustainable development. In the future, UNIDO will always adhere to the concept that innovation drives progress and continue to cooperate with the School of Design at Shanghai Jiao Tong University to play a key role in promoting global innovative design and technology transfer.’’
Editor on Duty: Diwei Chen
Responsible Editor: Qianqian Jiang, Yuhe Fu