On 28 April 2023 a delegation of the Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP-CSAM) attended the 2023 Lei Si International Conference in Zhenjiang, Jiangsu Province, China. The Conference was organized by Jiangsu University and relevant agricultural machinery associations in China on the theme of promoting industry-university integration in the field of agricultural mechanization.
On behalf of ESCAP-CSAM, Mr. Marco Silvestri, Programme Officer, delivered opening remarks at the conference reiterating the significance of the integration of industry and education in promoting sustainable agricultural mechanization. He commented that sustainable agricultural mechanization plays a pivotal role for achieving food security, alleviating poverty as well as helping reduce environmental fall-out, in particular, when being integrated with cutting-edge technologies such as digital devices, artificial intelligence and agricultural robotics. Emphasizing that intensified efforts must be undertaken to increase investment and synergies for research and development aiming at improved industry-university-research cooperation, and accelerated application of scientific and technological achievements for wider adoption of agricultural machinery, he urged for strengthened partnerships and collective efforts through agricultural mechanization solutions for the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific.
During the visit, Mr. Yan Xiaohong, President of Jiangsu University, met with CSAM’s delegation. Dr. Yan gave a brief introduction of Jiangsu University’s scientific laboratories featured at national level, its strong capacity in research and development for agricultural machinery and the university’s support for international education. From CSAM’s side, its work in capacity building, policy formulation assistance and gender mainstreaming, especially within the framework of South-South Cooperation and contribution to China’s poverty alleviation efforts, were highlighted by the visiting delegation. The two sides agreed to further collaborate under the Memorandum of Agreement signed between ESCAP and Jiangsu University in 2021 with a renewed focus on research, training, and gender mainstreaming activities. After the meeting, the CSAM delegation also held discussions with relevant faculties and colleges of the University including the College of Agricultural Engineering, School of Automotive and Traffic Engineering, School of Energy and Power Engineering as well as School of Law.