On January 7, 2021, the 2020 Academic Annual Conference of the Shanghai Federation of Social Science Associations was convened at the Small Auditorium of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences. The Shanghai Coordinated Innovation Research Base for Ecological Economy and Green Transition was officially established at the conference.
Quan Heng, Secretary of the Leading Party Members’ Group of the Shanghai Federation of Social Science Associations, delivered an important speech, expecting the Base to give full play to the vitality of coordinated innovation and carry out collaborative researches on the major needs and key issues derived from the comprehensive green transformation of Shanghai’s economic and social development, noting its advantage supported by 1) the top-notch think-tanks of the Shanghai Social Science Academy, which has at its command extraordinary inter-disciplinary researchers, 2) the enormous intellectual demands of Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Ecology and Environment as the major relevant policy-maker, and 3) the talent strength of Shanghai Federation of Social Science Associations.
Regarding the future development of both the Research Base and the Shanghai Federation of Social Science Associations, Quan Heng put forward three suggestions. First, make full use of the federation as a platform to further explore and study Xi Jinping's thought on ecological civilization. Second, make full use of the federation as a think tank, so that more policy suggestions can be formulated, and more creative attempts can be designed, for the green development and Shanghai’s high-quality growth, for the green transformation and the upgrading of urban lifestyle, and for more effective communication, to the world, of China’s experiences in green development. Third, make full use of the federation as a talent-incubator and team-builder: Excellent research teams consisting of people of all age groups should be formed in the course of the green transformation of the economic development.
At this academic annual conference themed on “Eco-City Construction and Development Intensification,” Cheng Peng, Director of Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Ecology and Environment, and Li Zhou, Chairman of China Ecological Economics Society, delivered the keynote speeches, Prof. Da Liangjun from East China Normal University, Prof. Geng Yong from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Ren Wenwei, Director of World Wide Fund Shanghai Office, Hu Jing, Director of Research Center of Low-Carbon Economy of Shanghai Academy of Environmental Sciences, and Cheng Jin, Director of Eco-City Research Office of Institute of Ecology and Sustainable Development of Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, gave speeches on specific topics successively.
Extensive discussions followed, reaching the consensus that green and low-carbon transformation is urgent and inevitable for cities to be competitive, sustainable, and inhabitable. As part of nature, cities, any cities, must re-examine the relationship between humans and the natural environment, as well as that between cities and nature. The concept of eco-city has rich theoretical intension and broad practical extension. Such a city would be only possible through integrating: 1) ecological economy, 2) resilient and flexible development, 3) urban ecological culture, 4) ecological technologies, etc. Finally, the construction of an eco-city should never ignore the people, whose sense of satisfaction, fulfillment and engagement is a major criterion to assess whether a city is an eco-city in its real sense.