BEIJING, June 28 -- China now has the world's second largest number of thinktanks, but more support is needed if they are to play a bigger role in public policy.
At a panel on China's thinktanks on Friday, James McGann, director of an American thinktank research program at the University of Pennsylvania, called for competition between government and quasi-government thinktanks, while supporting and encouraging independent thinktanks.
"Now is the time to deepen reform and policy and organizational innovation in China, but this can only be achieved if China allows 1,000 thinktanks to bloom," said James
Joining him on the panel was Wang Huiyao, director of the Center for China and Globalization, a non-profit independent thinktank. Wang said Chinese entrepreneurs could do as well as their American counterparts did in the past, such as Andrew Carnegie, to donate money to the development of thinktanks.
According to a report by McGann's program, China had 426 thinktanks last year, after America's 1,828, but only six of the Chinese institutions ranked among the top 100.
McGann said the ranking was determined by the quality of a thinktank's staff, research and publications as well as who listens to their advice.