The China Association for Science and Technology (CAST) has been given a bigger role in managing affairs related to the country’s fields of science and technology.
“As part of the country’s comprehensive reform, science and technology societies should be allowed to take full advantage of their unique knowledge to take over some governmental functions in an orderly manner,” according to a government work plan released on July 16.
CAST is the largest non-governmental organization for science and technology workers in China, linking the government and the CPC to the science and technology community. It has more than 200 member societies.
The plan was jointly released by the general offices of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the State Council, China’s cabinet, and requires that CAST members should have more say in science and technology project evaluation, engineering and technology certification, formulating industrial standards - and recommending candidates for state science and technology awards.
Following several pilot projects, the plan outlines innovative working patterns, and aims to expand working areas and strengthen system construction. Additionally, it aims to develop replicable modes, improve takeover procedures and provide examples for deepening the comprehensive reform and promoting a modern administration system.
According to the plan, science and technology societies - as independent third parties - are expected to intensify process monitoring and evaluation of results, and develop a system to pursue liability in cases of misconduct and errors, setting an example of fairness, justice and transparency for future reforms in the field.
The plan also requires that CAST and its members should coordinate market players in compiling standards for 3D printing, industrial robots, new energy vehicles and traditional Chinese medicine.