China has a “stunning edge” in 37 of 44 critical and emerging technologies, a security think tank said on Thursday after tracking defence, space, energy, and biotechnology as Western democracies lose global competition for research output. Are.
The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) said its study showed that, in some regions, all of the world’s top 10 research institutes are located in China. The study, funded by the United States Department of State, found that the United States was often second, although it led global research in high-performance computing, quantum computing, small satellites, and vaccines.
“Western democracies are losing global technological competitiveness, including the race for scientific and research breakthroughs,” the report said. China had established a “surprising lead in high-impact research” under government programs.
The report called for democratic nations to cooperate more often and “rapidly pursue strategically important technology step-ups” to build secure supply chains. ASPI tracked the most cited scientific papers, which it said were most likely to result in patents. China’s surprising breakthrough in hypersonic missiles in 2021 would have been identified earlier if China’s robust research had been detected.
“Over the past five years, China generated 48.49% of the world’s high-impact research papers in advanced aircraft engines, including hypersonic ones, and it hosts seven of the world’s top 10 research institutes,” it said. In the field of photonic sensors and quantum communications, China’s research power can “darken” for Western intelligence surveillance, including the “Five Eyes” of Britain, the United States, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.
National talent flows of researchers were also tracked, and monopoly risks were identified. China was likely to emerge with monopolies in 10 sectors, including synthetic biology, where it produces a third of all research, as well as electric batteries, 5G, and nanotechnology
The Chinese Academy of Sciences, a government research body, ranks first or second in most of the 44 technologies, spanning defence, space, robotics, energy, environment, biotechnology, artificial intelligence (AI), advanced materials, and quantum technology. China was boosting its research with knowledge gained overseas, and data showed that one-fifth of top Chinese researchers were trained in the Five Eyes country.
The study recommended visa screening programs to limit illegal technology transfers and instead favour international cooperation with security partners. Australia’s universities have said they are complying with foreign influence laws designed to prevent the illegal transfer of technology to China, but have also noted that international collaboration is an integral part of