Jia Jiaya, professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and distinguished scientist and director of Tencent Youtu Lab, talks about Shenzhen’s potential leading role in developing smart tourism within the Bay Area given its prowess in high technology. (CALVIN NG / CHINA DAILY)
Shenzhen remains a hotspot for technological and innovative companies to take root, according to a distinguished scientist at Tencent’s Youtu Lab.
With the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, young hopefuls and entrepreneurs in the region prefer to set up shop in Shenzhen, while Hong Kong is the main port for delivering talents and experts, said Jia Jiaya, professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and distinguished scientist and director of Tencent Youtu Lab.
With the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, young hopefuls and entrepreneurs in the region prefer to set up shop in Shenzhen, while Hong Kong is the main port for delivering talents and experts
professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and distinguished scientist and director of Tencent Youtu Lab
As an integrated region of synergies, the nine cities in Guangdong province and the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions that make up the Bay Area cluster can deploy their competitive edges and complement each other by creating more opportunities, though challenges remain, Jia told China Daily at the sidelines of the eighth Global Tourism Economy Forum in Macao.
The Shenzhen government plays a vital role in the city’s technology and innovation sector, said Jia, a longtime resident of Shenzhen. He reckons that Shenzhen’s technological development far exceeds that of Hong Kong and Macao as the city prioritizes innovative technology development.
Jia suggested that Hong Kong invest more in developing innovative technology, which may create more job opportunities for the city’s young people. In addition, more programs to attract talents should be launched.
Preferable policies a draw
He noted that Hong Kong nurtures a great number of top talents each year, but his company chose to start its business in Shenzhen due to preferable policies and incentives introduced by the local government.
Tencent Youtu Lab is part of the company’s development strategies in artificial intelligence. Set up in 2012, the company focuses on image understanding, face and audio recognition, machine learning and data mining with more than 300 research and scientific experts. The lab has made achievements in academic scientific research and application.
Commenting on smart tourism, Jia said advanced technologies can be embedded into every step of the ecosystem — from tourism promotion to tourism experience and services. He cited the example of Tencent’s latest smart tourism app for users in Yunnan province in Southwestern China.
The project has narrowed the gaps between tourism practitioners, service personnel and tourists by providing an open online platform with convenience, efficiency and safety, Jia said. Moreover, it eliminates online and offline barriers, and can be widely used for other provinces and regions. Jia said the model will be promoted in overseas markets.
Youtu Lab works on technologies that, among others, can be applied in the healthcare industry, where the lab uses AI and other technologies to alleviate the shortage of medical resources in the less-developed cities and regions. Youtu Lab has a team of medical research and development, Jia said. Youtu Lab has eight essays on AI healthcare nominated to the ongoing International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer Assisted Intervention in Shenzhen, he added.
Another field Youtu Lab targets is smart-city development where facial recognition and smart environment detection can be applied. The lab also works on optimizing transportation, such as automated vehicles.
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