“Can We Trust Science from China?” Observations around the Ascent of a New Power Player
The People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) rapid ascent in the sciences over the past two decades has been met with both fascination and fear. Some consider Chinese science to be shrouded by secrecy. For this camp, the alleged withholding of COVID-related data of the Wuhan Institute of Virology is but one latest example. Others see China as a rising superpower rebelling against Western dominance and biases. The recently terminated "China Initiative’" in the United States is emblematic of the narrative of intolerance and bias. How can we make sense of the conflicting interpretations of China? Do Chinese scientists trust each other? If global mistrust of science from China persists, what are the implications for China, and for international collaborations? More importantly, how can we create conditions to encourage accountable science in and with China? Focusing on China’s development in the life sciences, this talk helps to shed light on these questions.