On 26 February 2021 the China Association for the Management of Technology (CAMOT) and Tsinghua University, a UNAI member, launched the Global Innovation Webinar Series with participants from over 10 countries and a focus on social justice.

The goal of the series is to explore the new normal and rethink global innovation trends, opportunities and challenges in the post COVID-19 era, inspire strategic thinking, and examine ways to promote innovation and sustainability.

The co-organizers hope to foster creative and innovative ideas by bringing together diverse stakeholders such as governments, universities and global firms. The virtual series looks to address various questions about the new normal and rethinking of global trends, with the key question being whether we will cope with COVID-19 passively or face it pro-actively, according to Prof. Richard Li-Hua, the general convenor of the series. 

Ramu Damodaran, Chief of United Nations Academic Impact, noted that based on the circumstances and challenges imposed by the pandemic, “It is now the era of reflection, wisdom and open-mind and forward thinking.” He also underlined the interconnections between the Sustainable Development Goals and education as well as the proper management of technology.

Prof. Chen Jim, who leads the Research Center for Technological Innovation at Tsinghua University, emphasized innovation should be coupled with social justice so that breakthroughs were “not just for high-tech firms and developed countries, but also adopted for less developed regions.”

Other speakers stressed the critical relevance of higher education institutions to foster social inclusion at all levels, the need to understand social inclusion and equality, and the need to harness innovation and use that to overcome current and future challenges.

To learn more about how United Nations entities are leveraging innovative approaches to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic check out the Special Edition of the Innovation Update.