Sept 28th, 2018
Source: JNU's Institute for Economic and Social Research
Author: Wu Qian
James J. Heckman, a winner of the 2000 Nobel Prize in Economics, was invited to lecture at Jinan University on Sept. 26 on China's Investment in Skills as part of Masters Visit JNU, a series of activities co-hosted by JNU and the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, assisted by JNU’s Institute for Economic and Social Research (IESR) and International Cooperation and Exchange Office. Heckman is also chairman of the IESR advisory committee and director of the University of Chicago’s Center for the Economics of Human Development.
Heckman said the investment of physical capital and an affluent mid-level technological labor force have contributed to China’s rapid development in the last 40 years. But now, he said, amid the pressure of the aging population, the government is paying more attention to investing in human resources and cultivating high-quality labor resources to face the challenges of aging.
(Heckman giving his lecture)
He held that population flow has pushed the economic growth, but meanwhile the skyrocketing urban population has made educational resources scarce He said he believes that the current opening of the market for private education might be effective in offering opportunities to attend school to the children of the floating population -- those who reside in a given population for a certain period, for various reasons, but are not generally considered part of the official census count.
In a welcoming speech, JNU President Song Xianzhong said Heckman's every visit has set off an academic tide at JNU, showing the great importance of academic masters to a university. He gave an introduction to Heckman's cooperation with IESR, especially the Chicago-Jinan Joint Human Development Research Program. Established in June as an Academic Free Trade Zone and combining the advantages of both sides, the program plans to set up an international academic platform.Song said he hoped such a high-level academic cooperation would promote the internationalization and level of JNU's economics discipline.
(JNU President Song Xianzhong giving the welcome speech)
After the lecture, Heckman met with six outstanding JNU students in economics-related majors. They raised questions about the two-child policy, machine learning and gender inequality, which Heckman answered skillfully and patiently.
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