UH Law Center Dean Baynes discusses education and innovation at US-China Summit

Law Center alumni Yang Wang '16, left, and Shen Wang '16, right, helped organize and participated in the Southern U.S.-China Summit held recently in Houston. Leaders in their professional fields, including Professor Zhihong Xu, former president of Peking University, second from left, and UHLC Dean Leonard M. Baynes, explored issues designed to improve relations between the two countries.

May 29, 2018 University of Houston Law Center Dean Leonard M. Baynes recently participated in a forum exploring issues affecting both the United States and China with the aim of fostering greater understanding and cooperation between the two countries.

Baynes spoke on a panel at the 2018 Southern U.S.-China Summit focusing on how education can foster entrepreneurship. The discussion, moderated by UHLC alumna Yang Wang '16, an associate with the firm of Reed Smith LLP, also explored the impact student exchanges have on development of science and technology; the role of universities in innovative development; and the value of a higher education in spurring entrepreneurial spirit.

"I was delighted to be invited to serve as a panelist," Baynes said. "China and U.S. relations are very important to the overall world economy. Learning about each other's legal systems is crucial for us to understand each other.

"I am very proud of UHLC grads Dr. Shen Wang'16 and Yang Wang'16 for putting this outstanding event together. They are young lawyers with a great deal of drive and commitment to the community."

Other panels included international leaders in education, business, healthcare and law who discussed issues ranging from "China's Reform and Opening Up" to energy, life science and healthcare, and technology.

Discussion of on-again, off-again trade talks between the two countries and the threat of a trade war was "hard to avoid," Yang Wang said. "The general belief is collaboration and partnership is always best because the two economies are dependent on each other in so many ways.

"These conferences are invaluable in bringing together the business and civic leaders of both countries," said Yang Wang, whose husband and fellow UHLC alum, Dr. Shen Wang '16, an associate with White & Case LLP, chaired the host committee of the Summit and moderated the energy & LNG panel discussion. "My husband and I feel honored to contribute to the strengthening tie between the U.S. and China," said Yang Wang

In December, Shen Wang traveled with a Houston delegation, including Mayor Sylvester Turner and members of the Greater Houston Partnership, on a trade mission to Shenzhen, Shanghai, and Beijing.

The 2018 Southern U.S.-China Summit was co-organized by the Houston alumni associations of Peking University and Tsinghua University with the support of the consul general of the People's Republic of China in Houston. It was held on May 13 at the Hilton Houston Post Oak hotel.

Organizers plan to make the Southern U.S.-China Summit an annual event in Houston with the next one scheduled for May 2019. That event will be larger, Wang said, because it will mark the 40th anniversary of full diplomatic relations between the U.S. and China as well as Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping's official visit to Houston in 1979.

UH Law Center alumna Yang Wang '16, left, Y. Ping Sun, representing Rice University, UHLC Dean Leonard M. Baynes, and Anoop Poddar of Energy Ventures Private Equity, discuss education issues at the U.S.-China Summit.           

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