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Data Explorer | Guangzhou ranks among the top 10 leading global science cities in 2023

On February 19, Guangzhou High-quality Development Conference was held, following the 2024 Guangdong Provincial High-quality Development Conference in Shenzhen on Feb. 18. Taking high-quality development as a primary task, the conference also aims to accelerate the development of a modern industrial system led by sci-tech innovation. 

In 2023, Guangzhou has achieved many sci-tech breakthroughs, accelerating the formation of new productive forces and injecting strong impetus into the high-quality development.

According to the Nature Index global science city 2023 rankings, Guangzhou ranked 8th among the other leading science cities in the world. With a total research and development (R&D) expenditure exceeding 98 billion RMB, it ranked 4th in the country.

Tracking research papers published on 82 natural science journals by global major cities, the Nature Index science cities ranking reflects high-quality scientific and technological achievements and cooperation of institutes, countries, and regions. Guangzhou contributed nearly 6 percent to China's total share in Nature Index, according to the index 2023.

Over the past three years, Guangzhou has consistently climbed the rankings, progressing from 14th (2021) to 10th (2022), and finally securing the 8th position in 2023. In this year’s Top-10 list, Guangzhou is followed by Tokyo and Paris, two globally renowned metropolitan areas.

This year, three cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay area (GBA), namely Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong, have been ranked among the top 25 science cities in the world, aligning with the GBA’s goal of establishing an international innovation and technology hub.

According to the 2024 Guangdong government work report, the province’s regional comprehensive innovation capacity has been leading for seven consecutive years in the country. Its total R&D expenditure reached 460 billion RMB in 2023.

In addition, Guangzhou has deepened the integration of industrial and innovation chains. The number of newly-added invention patents reached 36,000, representing a 31.9 percent year-on-year increase. The latest statistics from the Guangzhou Municipal Science and Technology Bureau show that it has increased investment in basic research over the past year, accounting for 12.2 percent of the total.

In 2023, the city has also made great efforts in fostering new entities of scientific and technological innovation. The number of high-tech enterprises and small and medium-sized high-tech companies surpassed 13,000 and 21,000 respectively, reaching a new high.

Reporter | Fanny

Poster | Lu Lu

Editor | Olivia, Steven, Nan, Monica, James 

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