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People & Points
Print Edition> People & Points
UPDATED: December 8, 2008 NO. 50 DEC. 11, 2008

Salute to Reform Planner

Du Runsheng, a senior expert on rural affairs, has won the inaugural China Award for Theoretical Innovation in Economics for devising the household contract responsibility system that helped millions of Chinese farmers shake off poverty in the 1980s.

Du, 95, known as the "father of China's rural reform," participated in the policymaking process during his tenure as vice minister of the State Agriculture Commission in 1979-83 and director of the Rural Policy Research Office under the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China in 1983-89. At the end of 1981, he and his colleagues formulated the document that theorized the household contract responsibility system after summing up experiences from several pilot programs.

Under the system, which went into effect in 1982, income is linked to personal contribution, which greatly stimulates farmers' enthusiasm for increasing production.

The 500,000-yuan ($71,000) award is jointly launched by four prestigious nongovernmental academic institutions in China: the Dong Fureng Foundation, the Economic Research Institute affiliated with Peking University, the Economic Research Institute affiliated with Renmin University of China and the Economic Research Institute affiliated with Wuhan University. It will be offered annually or biennially to recommend time-tested original Chinese economic theories.

This year, Du secured 88 of all 148 votes by leading Chinese economists.

Successful PC Duo

Two top leaders of Lenovo Group Ltd., Chairman Yang Yuanqing and CEO William Amelio, have been named "Businessmen of the Year" by Forbes Asia.

According to the magazine's Silicon Valley correspondent Rebecca Buckman, the pair has tried to carve out a new global business model for Lenovo, the world's fourth largest PC maker. "For their unorthodox but effective partnership to date, they are Forbes Asia's 2008 Businessmen of the Year," Buckman wrote in a profile.

Yang, 44, joined Lenovo (then known as Legend Group) in 1989 as a salesman. He was credited with designing the marketing network that helped Lenovo beat foreign rivals to become China's best-selling PC brand after 1997. Before Lenovo bought IBM's PC unit in December 2004, he was the company's president and CEO. The U.S. BusinessWeek magazine picked Yang as one of Asia's rising stars in 2001.

American Amelio, 51, replaced Stephen Ward as Lenovo's CEO in 2005. He had worked at IBM Corp. and Dell Inc. The Forbes Asia story said that Amelio is showing his own revolutionary streak in leading the Chinese company together with Yang.

Ice Court Leader

Chinese speed skater Wang Meng became the world's first female athlete to finish the 500-meter short-track race within 43 seconds, at 42.609 seconds, on November 29 at the China stop of the International Skating Union Short Track Speed Skating World Cup.

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