The Seventh Inforum World Conference in Beijing, China

The seventh Inforum World Conference was held at Central University, in Beijing, China.

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Here is a brief summary of the conference:

On Sunday evening, August 22, the guests were met with a welcome dinner at the "Expert" Hotel on the Central University campus.  The Expert Hotel was also the meeting place for the conference papers and discussions.

Monday, August 23
After introductory remarks by our hosts Pan Shengchu and Li Shantong, the various partner groups gave reports on their activities during the past year.  We gave a hearty welcome to our newest member, Guy West, from the University of Queensland, Australia.  After coffee break, Clopper presented some new features of G7, which allows for complete control of an Interdyme model from within the program.  He also presented some tentative results from a new revision of the Quest model, which uses a stock market variable in the savings rate and investment equations.   Mike Field then gave an account of his use of G7 in developing and maintaining the Mudan model databanks. 
After lunch, Mr. Sasai talked about his work with the new 1995 I-O table and the adjustments to the 1993 SNA for Japan.  Bert Smid then gave an account of his experiences in comparing different types of consumption demand systems for the Dutch model, including PADS, AIDS and LES.  After coffee, some of us joined Clopper in the Computer Lab.  Dinner that evening was in a nearby Sichuan restaurant.
Tuesday, August 24
The first paper of the morning was given by Douglas Meade, and was a description of the experiences in developing the new version of the U.S. model, called IdLift.   Next, Elena Alonso gave an outline of the plans at Tomillo for making a new version of the MIDE model.  After coffee break, Gosha and Marat gave two separate talks on Russia.  Gosha's paper was a description of the new RIM model, also presenting some first results.  Marat spoke about a new feature in the Russian economy: economic growth!  After lunch, Mr. Sasai and Dr. Imagawa described their new regional model of Japan.  That afternoon, the group enjoyed a stroll through the famous Summer Palace of the Last Empress.

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Wednesday, August 25
On Wednesday morning, Clopper Almon kicked off the day with an impressive talk on creating product-to-product tables with no negatives, and showed an example using the 1992 U.S. I-O table.  This was followed by an optimistic presentation by Michal Przybylinski on the power of exports to stimulate the Polish economy during the 1st decade of the 21st century.  After coffee, Bernd Meyer spoke about models of structural change for Germany.  Finally, Yuan Songqi discussed Mudan99, a simplified version of the Chinese model.  After lunch, the group made a trip to the Forbidden City, and that night, dinner was in the best Peking Duck restaurant in Beijing.
Thursday, August 26
The keynote talk of the morning was by Doug Nyhus: "A Study of China's Entry into the WTO".  After coffee, Josef Richter gave a fascinating account of his work in redesigning the statistical system for Austria.  Then Peter Rormose described the progress thus far on the Danish model, DANDY3M, and posed some questions to the group about the price solution where there exist different price indexes for the various final demand categories because of aggregation mix. 
After lunch, Mariusz Plich talked about his work on integrating the modeling of pollutants into IMPEC.  Marc Ingo gave an account on his research on the effect of demographic change on consumption expenditures in Germany.  That evening we went to the Beijing Opera.
Friday, August 27
On the last day, there were four talks.  First, Maurizio Grassini talked about a study he and Clopper had done using BTM, entitled "Reallocation of Industries within Europe".  Gerd Ahlert gave a polished report on the use of the SPORT model to study the economic impact of the World Cup 2006 in Germany.  After coffee, Lucja talked about new input-output tables and SAM's for Poland, and Cong Liang gave an account his impression of the impact of demand factors on price change in China.  After an open discussion on the future plans of Inforum, we all made a trip to the Great Wall.   The "heroes" who made it to the top of the mountain were blessed with aching bones.  Dinner was at the pagoda on the "North Sea" in Beijing, where we were the guest of Mr. Wang of the DRC. 
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Saturday, August 28
After an early breakfast, we proceeded by bus to the Jietai Temple and Tanzhe Temple, on the outskirts of Beijing.  It was good temple viewing weather -- cool and breezy.   After lunch at McDonald's (some of us snuck off to other fare!), the group went to the Temple of Heaven.  At this point, some broke off to do shopping, some wandered through the "Houtons" of Beijing in search of real life.

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