Song of BRICS Skills Development Navigator

---The First BRICS Skills Development & Technology Innovation Competition

China has officially taken over the BRICS rotating presidency from Jan. 1st 2017. As one of the activities to promote politics, economics, humanities among BRICS countries, the 1st BRICS Skills Development & Technology Innovation Competition closed at Shanghai Institute of Technology on August 31st before the ninth meeting of BRICS leaders in Xiamen.

BRICS Skills Development & Technology Innovation Competition is one of the important achievements during the period of China serving as rotating presidency of BRICS Countries in 2017. The success of the competition has left a profound Chinese impression on BRICS mechanism and it also will be a long-term mechanism for BRICS cooperation.

The five independent events of the BRICS competition were held in Kunming, Nanning, Hangzhou, Shanghai respectively and the BRICS competition was strongly supported and extensively participated by the Chinese government and BRICS countries. Russia, India, South Africa participated in the competition events, selected and dispatched experts to participate in related activities. Belt &Road countries including  Kazakhstan, Slovakia,  Mongolia, Ukraine and Vietnam also responded to the invitation warmly and participated in the competition actively.

IIW·CWS·Arc Cup 2017 International Welding Competition

IIW·CWS·Arc Cup 2017 International Welding Competition was the opening event of BRICS Skills Development & Technology Innovation Competitionand was held in Shanghai from June 24th to 30th. A total of 73teams of more than 300 welding technicians and masters from Russia, India, China, South Africa, Kazakhstan, Slovakia, Mongolia, Ukraine, Vietnam, Cameroon, Nigeria and Spaintook part in this competition. All BRICS countries except Brazilparticipatedin the competition. The number of participants was as follows: China 253, Russia 50, India 5, South Africa 4. Nearly 1000 people from all walks of life attended the Opening and Closing Ceremony as well as various competition events.  Great attention has been given to the competition by domestic and foreign media, and China central television(CCTV) and Russia Central Television reported the event.

This International Welding Competition consisted of the First International Welding Technology Competition, the Fourth International Robot Welding Competition and the Fifth International Welding Skills Competition. Team Gold Prizes of enterprises were awarded for CRRC Group, Russia NAKS team and CEEC Group. In the BRICS countries, Russia won 4 first place, 1 second place, 1 third place in the individual prizes and 4 third grade prize. India competitor won a second place in the individual prizes. South Africa competitor won a first place in the individual prizes and other Prizes for China and corresponding participating teams.

The competition was once again awarded the “World Cup for Welding” with high level, participation, deep impact and IIW has praised its contribution to the progress of the world welding technology.

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BRICS Maker Competition

45 teams of more than 400 people participated in the series activities of BRICS Maker Competition in Kunming from August18th to 20th. More than 200 youth markers from China, Russia, India, etc. started a collision of creative thinking and make friends across the country in the two days of “Spring City Appointment”.

Minister of Competition for the WorldSkills Russia Alliance, Atem Nikolaev delivered a speech on behalf of all teachers and competitors of BRICS at the opening ceremony. He guided 4 Russian competitors to complete the competition projects and he attracted a lot of attention and applause during explanation.

With the recommendations from a number of marker organizations and universities in China, the makers have brought 42 outstanding works of various characteristics for the finalcompetition. They set their sights on Grand Global Challenge, Co-faced unique problems and development opportunity by BRICS countries, combining with innovative ideas and advanced technologies,to create a number of creative, innovative, technical leading products with social significance and industrial value.

The competition creatively adopted the form of combining the project exhibition and the on-site maker marathon, highlighting the real value of the project and the project realization of the product. It also tested the maker team’s ability to respond to assessment expert advice on site and put forward improvement program. The competition invited 32 experts from colleges and universities, science and technology industry, cultural creativity industry as review committee members, and emphasize the comprehensive investigation towards the project in social value, creativity, function realization, industrial design and so on.

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In combination with Data Mining and Modeling, China Unicom Research Institute has set up sub-event test to guide young makers to focus on the combination of new technologies and industrial applications in the digital age. The Institute of Cultural and Creative Development of Tsinghua University has given a special award of culture and creative industry for products around humanistic philosophy and creative industry.

The Blind Smart Helmet Project of Kunming University of Science and Technology, Smart Skate Project of Fab Lab, St.Petersburg, Pattern Recognition Smart Mirror of Guangdong University of Technology, King Kong Poet of Zhejiang University and Smart Living Steward of Northwestern Polytechnical University, etc. won the special cultural and creative award.

Machinery & Electricity Skills Competition

Machinery & Electricity Skills Competition was held in Nanning on August 20th to 22nd. 288 competitors of 74 delegations of 55vocational colleges from the whole country performed their unique skills and started intense competition on the project of “Complex Components CNC Multi-axis Machining Technology” and “Installation and Commissioning of Automatic Production Line”.Totally more than 450 competitors participated in serious activities of Machinery & Electricity Skills Competition.

Mechatronics, the basis of industrial automation, is the main trend of mechanical industry technology and product development and also an inevitable requirement of the development of social productivity. In recent ten years, China has not only explored a large number of skilled professionals through the skills competition, but also promoted the rapid development of the vocational education and skills teaching, which has played a role of learning to promote skills by competition.

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South Africa dispatched a Focus Group consisting of 15representatives to learn organization experience from China. Two representatives from WorldSkills Russia visited the competition. Three officers from merSETA attended the Closing Ceremony, and they discussed with Chinese engineers and experts about the current situation of electro-mechanical skills development, prospect and competition organization.

Machinery & Electricity Skills Competition was held by Guangxi Technological College of Machinery and Electricity. The competition left a footprint in Guangxi and it also provides a platform for Guangxi to expand professional skills on education resources and attract professionals fully.

3D Printing and Intelligent Manufacturing Competition

3D printing and intelligent manufacturing Competition was held in Hangzhou, China from August 22nd to 26th. Over 300 technical professionals of 68 domestic colleges and universities from South Africa and Russia participated in the competition and more than 500 people participated in a series of competition activities.

Among the competitors, 6% of them are from the universities, 82% from the higher vocational colleges and 12% from the technician institutes. There was a fierce competition among 15 lecturers from different South African vocational colleges and 2 delegations from the WorldSkills Russia and many Chinese competitors. 5 officers from the merSETA watched the competition, and they thought that these competitions and the exchange and cooperation of the technical skills among the BRICS competitors would make the teachers of South Africa experience and learn new knowledge and skills, and it becomes one of the ways to promote the skills development in South Africa. By learning experience from China's skills competitions, they hope the BRICS can work together for common cooperation and progress.

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This competition is composed of two projects. 30 teams participated in the 3D Printing Modeling Competition and 51 teams participated in the competition of the Operation and Maintenance of the Intelligent Manufacturing Production Line. Through practical operation and technical defense, fierce competition started. 8 indicators of international professional competence were brought in during the technical defense process to test the competitors’ comprehensive abilities of basic theory applicationto determine and analyze the professional technology and solve practical problems.

The competition covered key technologies in digitalization, networking and intelligence, fully demonstrating the development achievements of intelligent manufacturing technology and industry, leading the direction of cultivation of intelligent manufacturing professionals in short supply and the transformation and upgrading of professional institutions,  promoting the transformation of competition achievements and the  industry-college-institute international cooperation and promoting the application and promotion of 3D printing and intelligent manufacturing technologies among the BRICS countries and Belt & Road areas.

Intelligent Manufacturing Challenge Competition

The Intelligent Manufacturing Challenge Competition, held in Shanghai on August 26th-30th, was the final event of the BRICS competition. More than 1,500 people participated in the Closing Ceremony of the BRICS Competition. More than 2,000 teachers and students from nearly 133 colleges and universities in China and nearly 400 participating teams advanced to this national finals after fierce competition.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

11 Lecturers and 2 officers assigned by the merSETA, 1 delegation of WorldSkills Russia visited the competition venues, learned the competition rules and participated in some competition activities.

There were 8 official projects of the intelligent manufacturing finals, including continuous process design and development, continuous process application implementation, logic control design and development, logic control application implementation, motion system design and development, industrial information design and development, intelligent innovation research and development, industrial hardware research and development, and 1 trial running competition called industrial software research and development. This competition provided a practical platform to cultivate high-quality science and engineering professionals, testing the application ability of comprehensive knowledge of competitors. Based on this platform, young professionals can exchange knowledge, display skills and make progress together.

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International Seminar on Skills Development and Technology Innovation

On the occasion of the BRICS competition, the Organizing Committee organized two "International Seminar on Skills Development and Technology Innovation" in Hangzhou and Shanghai respectively on August 24th and 29th. Professor Zha Jianzhong, presenter of UNESCO Chair on Cooperation Between Higher Engineering Education and Industries, delivered a report "Strategies for Training Professionals for the Future Workplace"; Mr. Middledorf, Former President of German Welding Society (DVS)/Consultant of German CONVERSIO Company,  introduced the report of “China Industry 4.0 for Smart Enterprise and Digital Economy” and conducted in-depth exchanges on the issue of intelligent manufacturing between China and Germany with experts from various institutions and enterprises. Ms. HESTER, Minister of the merSETA, introduced and analyzed the status quo of skills development and training in South Africa and approved of the skills development in China. By learning from China's experience, she hoped that someday some skills activities could be organized in South Africa.

Domestic and foreign experts, representatives of WorldSkills Russia, officers from the merSETA, the Observation Mission of South African Vocational School, Hangzhou Vocational & Technical College and Shanghai Institute of Technology attended the two Seminars. Across the language barrier, people fully exchanged and interacted with each other. The seminars won the praise of the participants.

 

The significance and future of the BRICS Competition

In recent years, the BRICS countries have continuously optimized their own industries and become a major economic driver for the new round of world economic development. In this context, it is of particular significance for BRICS countries holding skills development and technology innovation competition.

First of all, the outcome of the competition has been fully affirmed by the top. During the meeting of BRICS leaders in Xiamen on September 4th, President Xi Jinping pointed out that the work of the Business Council and New Development Bank had achieved important results. He said: "The Business Council has done a great job in areas of e-commerce and skills development and has achieved good achievements."

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Dr. Liu Zhenying reporting the SDWG work during the meeting of the BRICS Business Council in Shanghai (Left)

Dr. Liu Zhenying attending the meeting of BRICS leaders in Xiamen (Right)

Secondly, the competition focuses on the skills development and technology innovation. It is a high-level skills competition with a wide range, strict requirement and high standard. Dr. Liu Zhenying, Chairman of BRICS Business Council SDWG and Chairman of Executive Committee of BRICS Competition said, under the background of BRICS and the "Belt &Road" initiative, the competition has taken place, taken root in China and opened up to the world. The competition aimed to promote the cooperation of engineering professionals cultivation, scientific research, cultural exchanges as well as the Industry-University Collaboration along Belt & Road countries and regions.

Thirdly, the competition ran its own characteristics, for example, it’s the first time to integrate the elements of internationalization, especially the BRICS elements into the industry vocational education competition; it’s the first time to show the trend of coordinated development of the pattern of intelligent manufacturing development and education by the competition; it’s the first time to create a new model of production and education’s collaborative development, innovation and optimization in the field of high-end technologies.

Finally, the competition becomes the cornerstone of the BRICS and global skills development in the future. On September 1st, the 2017 Annual Meeting of BRICS Business Council in Shanghai, South Africa was identified as the BRICS Chair in 2018 and it will organize the next BRICS Skills Development and Technology Innovation. During the meeting, Russia decided to Organize BRICS plus competition in 2020. These are all based on this successful BRICS competition organized by China.

The future of the BRICS competition must be open and flexible with fixed BRICS competition projects. At present, China is planning to cooperate with China Unicom Group to jointly establish a big data network platform. Based on this platform, BRICS competitors can  participate in the competition via the Internet remotely so that the competition costs are reduced greatly and more competitors from other countries will be attracted.

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