Viet Nam News
Nguyễn Việt Dũng, director of HCM City Department of Science and Technology, talks to Việt Nam News about the development of science and technology and innovation in the city.
How did the Department of Science and Technology help HCM City in science and innovation last year?
The department had targeted goals and tasks last year and carried out many policies to assist in setting up an ecosystem of science and innovation in the city. It also submitted more policies to the city’s People’s Committee to help the ecosystem operate more effectively.
It also offered more assistance policies in training, management, attendance at scientific conferences, and international co-operation with universities, in addition to those on scientific research.
We also enhanced the progress of the ecosystem for students to start their own research and explore ideas at their universities.
The department acted as a bridge to link enterprises, universities, startups, incubators and venture capital funds in the city, and to establish four standing boards with the aim of developing an ecosystem of science and innovation in the city’s four main industries, including mechanical engineering, electronics, chemicals – rubber – plastics, and food processing.
We also sped up the public-private partnership in the implementation of the city’s programmes on innovation and creation. For instance, Điện Quang Lamp Joint Stock Company is co-operating with University of Technology (which is part of Việt Nam National University-HCM City) on a project to develop technologies for LED lamps. It will be submitted to the city’s People’s Committee for approval.
Can you assess the public awareness of the need to speed up innovation and startups in HCM City?
Over the last two years, the city People’s Committee has had messages about speeding up innovation activities. University leaders have changed their mindset and created many conditions to create programmes that encourage students and lecturers to be innovative in science and technology, which can help develop the city. Universities are the cradle of science and technology.
Leaders of districts in the city have started to set up an assistance space for innovative and creative activities in science and technologies in their localities. But it takes time to develop deeply and be effective.
What course of action will the Department of Science and Technology take this year?
We made a detailed plan of action for this year under five five-year programmes which the city People’s Committee has issued, including programmes on scientific research-technology development and raising the potential of the city’s science and technology by 2020, and developing a market for science and technology.
The department’s main task this year is to focus on support policies on scientific and technological research and development at universities; commercialise research results. Research at universities and institutes has high commercial value, but commercialisation is not easy. We will provide more assistance for startups to commercialise their results of scientific research.
Based on innovation and science as well as technologies, startups will create breakthroughs in development.
How does the science and technology sector contribute to building a smart city?
The city’s policies to build a smart urban city offer opportunities for researchers at universities and institutes, enterprises and innovative startups.
The city needs “smart” solutions based on technologies. Universities and institutes as well as enterprises should take advantage of the chances to work together to develop solutions. —VNS