France and Singapore further cement science and innovation cooperation with new agreements and collaborative programme [fr]
The second meeting of the France-Singapore Joint Committee on Science and Innovation (JCSI) was held online on 24 June 2021. The meeting, which was attended by Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies and Chairman of the National Research Foundation, Mr Heng Swee Keat, and France’s Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, Ms Frédérique Vidal, saw the signing of 3 new agreements between France and Singapore and the planned commencement of a large collaborative programme on the use of hybrid-artificial intelligence in urban critical systems.
Singapore, 24 June 2021. The second meeting of the France-Singapore Joint Committee on Science and Innovation (JCSI) was held online on 24 June 2021. The JCSI aims to enhance research cooperation between France and Singapore in the areas of science and technology. The first JCSI meeting took place in Paris in November 2019.
The second meeting of the JCSI was co-chaired by the Chief Executive Officer of the National Research Foundation Singapore, Professor Low Teck Seng, and the Director-General for Research and Innovation of France’s Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, Dr Claire Giry. Various public sector agencies of both countries, including funding agencies and research institutions, as well as companies, were also involved in the event. The two chairs shared updates on the research and innovation strategies of both countries. The meeting also included exchanges on potential cooperation opportunities in four areas: circular economy, synthetic biology, agrifoodtech, and quantum technologies.
Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies and Chairman of the National Research Foundation, Mr Heng Swee Keat, and France’s Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, Ms Frédérique Vidal, met virtually before attending the second JCSI meeting. They exchanged their views on science, technology and innovation policies, international collaborations and related issues. During the JCSI meeting, they were briefed on the latest cooperation in areas of mutual interest such as health and infectious diseases, artificial intelligence, nuclear safety, space, and co-innovation between companies.
Singapore’s National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) shared on exchanges held through the Bilateral Singapore-France Scientific Working Group on Infectious Diseases (SWGID). First convened in July 2020, the SWGID aims to build and grow the friendship and network of the Infectious Diseases (ID) community between Singapore and France. This is particularly important in the current global pandemic context, as well as in preparation for future ID threats.
NRF and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) announced the planned commencement of the DesCartes programme as part of NRF’s Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE). The programme will be a collaboration of researchers from CNRS, NUS, NTU and A*STAR. The five-year programme aims to develop a disruptive, multi-purpose cross-disciplinary tool, that is based on a hybrid of AI-Physics-Engineering-Human centric approaches, to support and empower decision-making in urban critical systems.
Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and French Public Investment Bank Bpifrance shared the promising results and the perspectives of their collaboration which supports the technology partnerships between companies from Singapore and France.
The French Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN) presented the technical topics on which the Singapore Nuclear Research and Safety Initiative from the National University of Singapore and IRSN have worked on for more than two years: radiobiology, radiochemistry and nuclear safety.
At the invitation of the Centre National des Etudes Spatiales (CNES), Singapore’s Office for Space Technology and Industry (OSTIn) recently joined the Space Climate Observatory as its 30th member. The SCO is a One Planet Summit initiative that uses satellite-based Earth-observation data to study the impacts of climate change.
Three Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) were signed during the second JCSI meeting between Singapore’s institutes of higher learning and their France counterparts, further strengthening the bilateral relations between the two nations. An MOU signed by Singapore Management University and HEC Paris will develop a more strategic partnership in innovation and entrepreneurship through the exploration of academic and incubation-related initiatives and research and knowledge exchange collaborations. Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and the French Institute of Research and Technology SystemX extended their strategic collaboration to address issues around data driven approaches to circular economy and industry energy efficiency, autonomous mobility and electromobility. NTU also signed a new MOU with the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA): this partnership aims to promote joint research activities, including academic exchanges, to build talent in the field of magnetic fusion for the development of clean energy.
Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies and Chairman of the National Research Foundation Mr Heng Swee Keat, said, “Singapore and France have a long-standing and strong partnership in the area of science and innovation. At the 2nd meeting of the Joint Committee on Science and Innovation, we noted the good progress. We commit to deepening our partnership in areas including pandemics, sustainability, and clean energy; and to promote greater collaboration among companies and research institutions on both sides. I am confident that these initiatives will create value not only for both our countries but also for the global community.”
France’s Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation, Ms Frédérique Vidal, said: “Since its implementation in 2019, the Joint Committee on Science and Innovation, which I had proposed to Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat, has been a powerful accelerator of new collaborations between France and Singapore. In particular, the second meeting gave the opportunity to release the first programme between France and NRF CREATE dedicated to artificial intelligence in critical urban systems with the participation of 80 scientific experts from France and Singapore. It’s a major step for the cooperation in science and innovation between our two countries.”