2019 Awards

Conference: Achieving Good Health at Low Cost: Enhancing Primary Health Care with Big Data Science 

Winnie Yip (Harvard School of Public Health)


China’s population is facing a crisis in which there is a rising financial strain on members of society, especially the poor, in affording to keep up with the current health care system. Furthermore, the state of the Chinese health care system is becoming more and more unsustainable and cannot meet the ever-changing needs of the Chinese population. The Chinese government is in a process of reforming the health care system in light of these concerns and has made building a primary care-based integrated delivery system a top priority in the nation’s health reform agenda in order to better suit the changing health needs of the Chinese population. Professor Yip is organizing a conference in order to allow for various academic researchers of different areas of expertise (big data, primary care based integrated delivery, entrepreneurs, policymakers) to come together to discuss and identify key efforts that must be undertaken in light of health care reform in China. Topics will include applications of big data in improving primary care, examinations of opportunities and constraints present in China’s health care system, and potential allowances for collaboration and implementation in solving these problems.

Conference: Confronting Disasters in an Era of Climate Change 

Harvard Center Shanghai


With each passing day, climate change becomes more prevalent in how we continue to live our everyday lives. Affecting areas such as disaster preparedness, response, and recovery, climate change is pushing the important topic of crisis studies to the forefront of our everyday discussions. The International Network of Disaster Studies (INDS) is an evolving network of academic researchers from various Asian countries, the United States, and Europe who bring these topics to the table through academic discussions. INDS will organize a conference to talk about the changing climate of our planet and its repercussions. There will be discussions on topics pertinent to our understanding of the consequences of increased meteorological events giving rise to chronic crisis, population migration, and civil conflict. This conference at the Harvard Center Shanghai will be the third in a series with support from various sponsors.

Research: Breathing New Life Into the Earliest Animals: Computed Tomography of Early Cambrian Fossils from South China 

Harvard University and Yunnan University


The Chengjiang Fossil Site in Yunnan Province, South China has an abundance of well-preserved fossils of ancient, complex organisms which had previously roamed the ocean floor at that very location 500 million years ago. This research project explores the oldest record of soft-bodied marine animals in helping provide a deeper understanding of organisms that inhabited the Earth millions of years ago and to learn more about the origins of our modern biosphere. The Chengjiang fossil site proves to be of particular significance in its preservation of soft-bodied organisms, a very rare occurrence when observing the typical fossil record. The goal of this collaborative effort between Harvard University and Yunnan University is to develop a more complete understanding and picture of the morphology, ecology, and evolutionary significance of the Chengjiang biota through the use of tomography and 3-D organization of soft tissues.