Hinrich Foundation and APRU Announce Winners of the 2018 Sustainable Trade Challenge
March 25, 2019

Hinrich Foundation and APRU Announce Winners of the 2018 Sustainable Trade Challenge

Hinrich Foundation and the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) declared the winners of the 2018 Sustainable Trade Challenge:

First Place: Ningcheng Cao of Hong Kong Baptist University

Second Place: Binil Mathew, Hao Nan and Devyani Chaturvedi of National University of Singapore (NUS)

With thousands of dollars in prizes at stake, the competition garnered interest from forward-thinking graduate students from 98 universities in 27 countries. Participants were challenged to develop policy proposals or industry solutions based issues raised in the Sustainable Trade Index.

The panel of judges chose the winning solutions for their viability and innovation, along with the promise of significant impact on selected issues. Judges included trade policy experts from National University of Singapore, INSEAD, UNESCAP, Asian Institute of Management, Abad Alcantara and Associates Trade Law Firm and Asian Development Bank.

Cao’s proposal was awarded the top score because of her data-driven approach, proposing a carbon tax in China using a model building method she learned in econometrics class. Cao said her personal experience with the haze phenomenon in her hometown of Beijing, along with reading about Photochemical smog in Europe and Los Angeles, USA, informed her research interests.

“Since there are too many variables …I want to find out an innovative, valid and efficient way for making our global trade…more sustainable,” Cao said.

The 2ndplace team developed a pioneering vocational tertiary education model using social impact investment in India.“Trade has become a primary cornerstone for peace and prosperity in Asia-Pacific,” said team member Hao Nan, a graduate student at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at National University of Singapore.

“From the International Relations perspective, inter-dependency brought by tight trade relations would lead to lasting peace,” Hao said. “From the public policy perspective, trade would facilitate the exchange of management experience, professionals and technologies between nations and further lead to national prosperity.”

The team, which also includes Binil Mathew and Devyani Chaturvedi, also masters students at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, chose to analyze the Indian economy because of the rapid trade growth India has experienced in the past decade. “By fulfilling the skilled labour demands of export industries, India would move towards sustainable trade,” Nan said.

The Sustainable Trade Challenge is part of the Hinrich Foundation’s research-based initiatives to improve trade outcomes, create maximum benefits for its participants and enhance geopolitical stability. The 2018 competition was held in partnership between the Hinrich Foundation and APRU.

Winning submissions:

About the Hinrich Foundation

The Hinrich Foundationpromotes sustainable participation in global trade through research initiatives, training and scholarship programs. The Foundation’s work is grounded in the belief that sustainable global trade drives economic growth, development and positive engagement between participating economies. The Foundation collaborates with thought leaders across the globe to research the conditions for making trade more sustainable and beneficial for participating economies. The robust scholarship program supports the sustainable development of global trade in emerging markets throughout Asia. Hinrich Foundation was established by Merle A. Hinrich in 2012.

About APRU

As a network of 50 leading universities linking the Americas, Asia and Australasia, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) is the Voice of Knowledge and Innovation for the Asia-Pacific region. It brings together thought leaders, researchers, and policymakers to exchange ideas and collaborate on effective solutions to the challenges of the 21st century. APRU was established in 1997 by the presidents of California Institute of Technology, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Los Angeles, and University of Southern California.