The 863 program (Chinese: 863计划) or State High-Tech Development Plan (Chinese: 国家高技术研究发展计划) is a program funded and administered by the government of the People's Republic of China intended to stimulate the development of advanced technologies in a wide range of fields for the purpose of rendering China independent of financial obligations for foreign technologies.
|History of science and
technology in China
|People's Republic of China|
Named after its date of establishment (March 1986, 86/3 by the Chinese date format), the 863 Program was proposed in a letter to the Chinese government by engineers Wang Ganchang, Wang Daheng, Yang Jiaxi, and Chen Fangyun and endorsed by Deng Xiaoping. After its implementation during the Seventh Five-Year Plan, the program continued to operate through the two five-year plans that followed, with state financing of around 11 billion RMB and an output of around 2000 patents (national and international).
Under the plan, about US $200 billion was to be spent on information and communication technologies, of which US $150 billion was earmarked for telecommunications. In 1996 the key technological field of Marine Technology was added. The implementation took place during the Seventh Five-Year Plan and an update has been made during the period of the Tenth, which lasted from 2001 to 2005.
In 2001, under the Tenth Five-Year Plan, the program was reevaluated in consultation with foreign experts. The result was a widened focus to strengthen the competitiveness of China in the global economy. The evaluation practice has been included into the program as a project management system.
In a 2011 court case, Chinese-born scientist Huang Kexue was found guilty of stealing commercial secrets from US-based corporations and passing at least some of this information to the 863 program.
The program initially focused on seven key technological fields:
Since 1986, two more fields have been brought under the umbrella of the program:
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- Wu, Hequan (2002-08-06), "The progress of communication technology subject of hi-tech research development plan of China", International Conference on Communication Technology Proceedings, 2000 (Beijing) 1: 3–4, doi:10.1109/ICCT.2000.889157, ISBN 0-7803-6394-9
- Feigenbaum, Evan A. (2003), China's Techno-warriors: National Security and Strategic Competition from the Nuclear to the Information Age, Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, p. 141, ISBN 978-0-8047-4601-4, OCLC 49415750
- Science & Technology Newsletter No.380: 863 Program Creates RMB 56 Billion Ministry of Science & Technology of the People's Republic of China (MOST) September, 30th 2004
- See the program description by the MOST: 1.Orientation and Objectives, 2.Major Tasks
- loc.cit. 4.Organization and Management 2) Project Management
- BBC News Chinese scientist Huang Kexue jailed for trade theft December, 22nd 2011
- Ke Yan (Ke, Yan), Science and Technology in China, German Edition (Beijing 2005), p.109 Passages readable online
- The 863 program description by the Ministry of Science & Technology of the People's Republic of China