WASHINGTON-China is moving ahead with its reform of science and technology by weaning re search institutes from state support, rewarding scientists who develop commercial products, and encouraging proposals for basic re search from individual investigators.

Wu Mingyu, vice minister in the State Science and Technology Commission, discussed these and other developments during a recent 10-day visit to the United States. Wu led a six-man delegation that gathered information on the relationship between the law and scientific and technological developments.

Chinese scientific advances traditionally have been closely regulated by the state, Wu said. This tight control has stymied efforts to apply science and technology to improve conditions for the average citizen. A new policy was adopted in 1982, he said, and since then the government has supported an increasing number of programs that use science and technology to build the Chinese economy.

The goal of most of the reforms is to...

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